KARACHI: The captain of Pakistan’s blind cricket team, who was shifted to a hospital in critical condition after he drank acid from a bottle which was supposed to contain water, was treated and released from the hospital, Express News reported Saturday.
The Indian media, however, has alleged that the Pakistani captain consumed detergent water, not acid and accused Pakistani media of blowing the issue out of proportion.
Captain Zeeshan Abbasi – who is leading the country in the Blind Twenty 20 series underway in Banglore – consumed the hazardous substance from a bottle on his table.
“The mineral water bottles were given to us everyday; the acid was in one of those bottles,” said the team manager.
The manager said that since the entire team is blind, they did not know that there was acid inside the bottle instead of water.
“How can this be a mistake? How was it on the breakfast table?” he enquired.
Chairman Blind Cricket Council Sultan Shah – speaking to Express News – was shocked by the incident and said that such a thing had never happened before.
Just yesterday, Abbasi led the team to its fourth consecutive win in the tournament, and that too against India. Pakistan beat India by eight wickets.
Why the acid was placed on his table or who put it there is under investigation, said the chairman.
Abbasi was shifted to a hospital where he is under treatment he confirmed, adding that they had an argument with the hotel management over the incident.
The hotel management has assured the chairman that they will check through CCTV footage and find the reason behind the incident.
The PBCC has accepted an apology by the hotel administration and has decided to continue playing in the tournament.
One man’s mistake not to damage ties
Meanwhile, Pakistan cricket board chairman Zaka Ashraf told reporters in Lahore that Abbasi has been released from hospital after treatment. He added that the Pakistan-India cricket series scheduled for late December will not be affected by this incident.
Ashraf said that initial information about the substance ingested was misreported, and that it was infact washing liquid, and not acid. He added that the hotel management has suspended the erring server.
The Pakistan high commissioner in Delhi has also spoken to the concerned ministry over the incident. The mistake of one man will not affect Pakistan-India relations, nor affect the upcoming bilateral series.