Razzaq out of World Cup

Pakistan’s troubled build-up to the World Cup took another blow, as allrounder Abdul Razzaq has been ruled out of the tournament with a knee injury. The bighitting Razzaq damaged his knee during practice and will be out of the game for three weeks.

There are fears that the injury may range in severity from ligament damage to a fracture. The experienced Azhar Mahmood has been called up as his replacement.

Pakistan is already uncertain of the availability of key bowlers Shoaib Akhtar and Mohammad Asif, both of whom are yet to pass compulsory dope tests. The two fast bowlers were banned from the game late last year when traces of nandrolone were found in their bodies. The ban was subsequently overturned, as the players proved “exceptional circumstances” for taking the drug.

Both Shoaib and Asif were in England at the time of the PCB’s most recent dope testing. The two were tending to injuries and are the only members of the Pakistan World Cup squad yet to undergo testing.

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