Azhar Mahmood Calls for End to Mental Health 'Taboo' in Cricket

A hard-hitting batsman and canny seam bowler Azhar Mahmood -- who marked his Test debut for Pakistan with 128 not out against South Africa in Rawalpindi in 1997 -- is now one of a select group of truly global 'freelance' cricketers playing in a variety of Twenty20 competitions including the Indian Premier League, Australia's Big Bash League and the Caribbean Premier League.

updated: August 27, 2014 15:59 IST
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A file photo of Azhar Mahmood while he plays a shot in the Indian Premier League.

London: Former Pakistan all-rounder Azhar Mahmood hopes to make mental health less of a "taboo" subject in South Asia.

Last week cricket stars from several countries gathered at a leading London hotel for Mahmood's benefit dinner, where tributes to him were led by Pakistan great Wasim Akram.

But the dinner also saw more than 18,000 pounds raised on the night for the mental health programme across South Asia backed by the British Asian Trust -- a charity of which Mahmood became the first Pakistani cricketer to be appointed an ambassador earlier this year.

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