I am a relieved man: Azharuddin
Former India captain Mohammed Azharudding said he is "a relieved man" after the Andhra Pradesh High Court on Thursday overturned the life ban imposed on him by the Board of Control for India (BCCI) in 2000.
"I am a relieved man. I fought this battle for so long with patience. It has been a tough battle and I am grateful to everyone who has supported me during this difficult period," Azhar told media reporters during a press conference here.
The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) had banned Azharudding from playing professional cricket after he was found guilty of match-fixing charges in 2000.
"My name is cleared and I don't want to dwell upon what happened in the past. If people want to keep talking about the past I can't help them. I am happy, I have not done anything wrong and I do not have any regrets," said Azharuddin, who is presently a Congress Lok Sabha member from Moradabad constituency in Uttar Pradesh.
Asked if he regrets getting stuck on 99 Tests, Azharudding said: "I think I was probably destined to play 99 Test matches hence played that many. I believe what has to happen, will happen."
Azharuddin said he was never hurt with the BCCI's action.
"I was never hurt with their action. That was their line of thinking. I can't blame them for that," he said.
Azharuddin said he always played the game honestly.
"I have always played the game honestly and with command. Today I am a relieved man after what I have suffered for the last 12 years. I fought this battle for so long with patience. It has been a tough battle and I am grateful to everyone who has supported me during this difficult period,"
Azharuddin said it has been a tough year and a half for him after his younger son Ayazuddin passed away last year in a road accident.
"The last year has been very tough. Today I want to be happy with my elder son Abbas. I wished the judgment had come a bit early," he said.
Asked who all from the cricket fraternity supported him during the last 12 years, Azharuddin said: "I always got support from Raj Singh Dungarpur, Kapil paaji and Kamal Morarka."