Karachi: Mohammad Asif, who served a jail sentence after being found guilty of spot-fixing, has dismissed speculation that he intended to apply for political asylum in the United Kingdom.

"I am training hard and regularly to keep myself fit and I am also preparing to file appeals against my convictions in the spot fixing case," Asif said.

Asif was released from a prison in Canterbury last month after completing a 12-month jail sentence in the spot-fixing case.

He has preferred to remain in London and said that he was been helping his legal team to finalise his appeal against his two convictions at the Southwark Crown Court that relate to spot-fixing allegations.

Asif said that he still wished to clear his name in the whole scandal. "I am training regularly these days. I spend a lot of time speaking to my family on the phone and over the internet. I am hopeful that I will play for Pakistan as I played before."

He also made it clear that he had no intentions of applying for political asylum. "There is no question of applying for political asylum in Britain. Those who run away from Pakistan apply for asylum. I want to return to Pakistan as soon as possible. I intend to return to Pakistan and play for my country," he added.

Asif revealed that he had spent the last few weeks assisting his lawyer Ravi Sukul of Balham Chambers with the preparation of the final grounds for appeal the two convictions. Speaking about the help provided by his legal team at the SJS Solicitors, Asif remarked: "I am very happy with the way my legal team has dealt with my case. They have done a good job on my appeal papers."

Asif has been granted permission by the Home Office to remain in the UK to assist in the progression of both his appeal against conviction and his appeal against the ICC ban. Ravi Sukul and Savita Sukul of SJS Solicitors said that Asif's application to appeal against his convictions is being considered by the Court of Appeal.

Ravi Sukul suggested that Asif's appeal against those two convictions is based upon mistakes made by the judge during the trial. The mistakes, according to him, are related to some of the Judge's decisions and the explanation he gave to the jury about the evidence the prosecution brought against Asif.

The appeal papers also focus on the fact that the marked "corrupt" money was found in the hotel rooms occupied by Salman Butt and Mohammed Amir but none was found in Asif's room.


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