This is just not cricket

Updated 19 March 2017
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This is just not cricket

Cricket has been running through my blood since childhood. As a Pakistani, I believe cricket is the only thing that unites us anywhere we may be in the world. But the recent suspension of fast bowler Mohammed Ifran for violating the anti-corruption code during the Pakistan Super league (PSL) shamed Pakistan and its people in front of the world.
I still rate Pakistani players among the best in the world. The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has gone an extra mile to back the players, but some fraudulent cricketers make us feel apologetic in front of the cricket world. The PCB should keep a vigilant eye on cricketers, and build self-confidence and fairness among them.
We also need an infrastructure of international standards in our country, because many new talents do not receive proper training in their early years, so they develop their skills on their own. Some might use shortcuts for money.
I saw the delight and pride Pakistanis felt during the PSL weeks in Dubai, and when the PCB decided to go ahead with its plan to conduct the PSL final in Lahore despite a spate of terrorist attacks in the country.
The Pakistani cricket legend Imran Khan said: “Compromise for your dream but never compromise on your dream.” The upcoming talent and current Pakistani players should follow the rules of cricket legends to achieve success, which is not possible without dedication and fair play.


Cartoon in bad taste

Updated 07 August 2017
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Cartoon in bad taste

I wish to use my “right of reply” to complain about the unfortunate caricature that appeared on Aug. 5, 2017, in your well-known newspaper. The cartoon represents President Nicolas Maduro sitting on a military tank and a hand coming out of the tank’s cannon writing on a book titled “New Constitution.” Such a caricature is offensive to my country.
What the caricature seems to imply is that President Maduro wants to rewrite a new constitution with the power of arms. This is totally false. It is immoral to give your readers such a forged image of Venezuela and its constitutionally- and democratically-elected government.
The revision of our constitution, which is among the best in the world, is mainly to reinforce it and make it more adaptable to the new times. It is not an imposition of our president; it has been backed by more than 8 million Venezuelans and has the objective of re-establishing the peace process that has been trampled by a violent opposition backed by interested foreign countries that pretend to give orders to our sovereign populace.
I fail to understand why some international media report fake news about my country, with the purpose of undermining our sovereignty, and the people of Venezuela’s absolute right to decide, in a free and independent manner, how it wants to conduct its internal affairs.
I invite your newspaper to inform about our country with the truth and the same respect that we, in Venezuela, treat to our brothers of Saudi Arabia.

Joseba Achutegui
Ambassador of Venezuela
Riyadh
Saudi Arabia