Cricket-Pakistan wicketkeeper Zulqarnain not seeking asylum

KARACHI Tue Nov 9, 2010 2:52pm GMT

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KARACHI Nov 9 (Reuters) - Pakistan wicketkeeper Zulqarnain Haider, who fled from Dubai to London because he said he feared for his safety after being ordered to cooperate with bookmakers, said on Tuesday he was not seeking political asylum.

Zulqarnain told the televison channel Geo News that he had been interviwed by British police, the border control agency and the International Cricket Council's Anti-Corruption and Security Unit.

"The border agency has taken my fingerprints and isued me a temporary stay," he said.

"I had no intentions of applying for political asylum at this stage and, if the Pakistan government is ready to give me assurance of security for me and my family, I am ready to return to Pakistan.

"I have no issues playing for Pakistan again provided the Pakistan Cricket Board wants me to play."

Earlier Zulqarnain said he was retiring from international cricket since he and his family were "constantly getting threats".

He left the team's hotel in Dubai before the fifth and final one-day international against South Africa.

"I was told to cooperate or I would face lot of problems," he said.

"This person approached me while I had gone out of the hotel for dinner. He told me cooperate with us and you can make a lot of money.

"He said, 'If you don't cooperate you will no longer be part of the team and we can make life very difficult for you'."

(Editing by John Mehaffey; To query or comment on this story email sportsfeedback@thomsonreuters.com)

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