07-26-2005, 04:08 PM
Shoaib Akhtar on a pay-as-you-play contract
Shoaib contract linked to fitness
Shoaib's express pace makes him a potent threat when fit
Worcestershire have revealed that fast bowler Shoaib Akhtar is with the club on a pay-as-you-play contract. He was unable to play against Yorkshire two weeks ago because of a calf strain and the amount he earns for the rest of the summer depends on him staying fit.
"He is here on the basis that he will do well if he appears and performs," said chief executive Mark Newton.
"If he doesn't do either of those things, then he will not be costing the club a lot of money."
Shoaib showed his value to the side by taking 6-47 in the first innings of their last Championship game against Northants, but it failed to prevent them suffering an 82-run defeat.
But they are fourth in the Division Two table, just nine points behind third placed Yorkshire, and in contention for a promotion spot.
"Shoaib has come here for two reasons - to try and resurrect his own career and, we hope, to win us some games," Newton added.
"The contract is very incentive linked and appearance linked. We have never done this with a player before because we do not think it is ideal in terms of the team culture.
"But Shoaib was delighted to come to Worcestershire on that basis and what he did at Northampton last week is what we have brought him here for."
Shoaib was left out of the Pakistan squad for a home series against India and tour to West Indies earlier this year but the selectors were not satisfied about his fitness.
He had to return home early from Australia last winter because of a hamstring problem.