Yousuf having second thoughts on joining ICL

After threats from IPL, Pakistan's senior batsman Mohammad Yousuf is confused over joining the 'rebel' Indian Cricket League.

updated: November 04, 2008 09:55 IST
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Pakistan's senior batsman Mohammad Yousuf is having second thoughts on joining the 'rebel' Indian Cricket League (ICL) after threats from the Indian Premier League to take him to court for breach of contract with it.

Sources said that Yousuf was recieved by former captain Inzamam-ul-Haq in New Delhi last evening and the duo consulted legal experts on Yousuf's problems with ICL and IPL.

"One does not know what the legal experts exactly told Yousuf but the official announcement of his signing with the ICL could be delayed as he is having a second thought to the whole issue now," one source said.

He said Yousuf was aware that he could find himself totally out in the cold if the IPL also lodged a legal case against him for rejoining the ICL.

"Obviously if Yousuf does play in the ICL it would be a coup for the organisers of the rebel league as the Pakistani batsman is a big name. So it would not be surprising if the IPL decide to spoil the party for him," the source added.

Indian board officials have made it clear that Yousuf was contracted to play in the IPL and had also been given an advance payment on the insistence of the Pakistan board and if he signs again for the ICL they would take him to court.

To make matters worse, Yousuf is already embroiled in a legal battle with the ICL over a breach of contract case.

PCB legal counsel, Tafazzul Rizvi who was representing Yousuf in his legal battle against the ICL before the Indian arbitrator and the Mumbai High Court said he was shocked by reports that the senior batsman had flown to India to join the 'rebel' league.

"I don't understand what he is trying to do because till few days back he was discussing the case with me to prepare for the next hearing," Rizvi said.

The ICL had filed the case against Yousuf claiming he took advance money in 2007 for signing a contract with them and then broke the contract without returning the money.

Yousuf had been saying he had returned the money to former Pakistan captain Moin Khan whom he claimed to be his agent for the ICL.

"The interesting part is that it was due to the efforts of Inzamam and Moin that the ICL management agreed to reopen negotiations with Yousuf and consider him for a contract to rejoin the rebel league," a source said.

He said Inzamam and Moin had mediated between the ICL and Yousuf after the Pakistani batsman approached them earlier this year and told them he was fed up of the way he was being treated in the Pakistan team and also by the fact that the PCB had not kept its promise that it would ensure he can play in the IPL.

Yousuf could not play in the IPL's inaugural season as the ICL had obtained a stay order against him from the arbitrator to play for any other league.

Meanwhile, PCB Chairman Ejaz Butt has told his officials to make one final contact with Yousuf and ask him clearly if he was intending to join the ICL so that the board can act accordingly.