According to the ICC, Pakistani journalist Zainab Abbas left India due to personal reasons.Pakistani presenter Zainab Abbas hit the headlines for controversial reasons, as she left India on Monday after receiving criticism on social media for alleged anti-India posts in the past. Meanwhile, the ICC has stated that she left India due to personal reasons and not because of the alleged posts.
Zainab was in Hyderabad, where she was assigned to cover Pakistan’s three World Cup fixtures in the city. She was there at the Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium during Pakistan’s opener vs Netherlands. Her job was to travel to cities where Pakistan are set to play, which include Chennai, Bengaluru and Ahmedabad.
Who is Zainab Abbas?
She was born in Lahore on February 14 1988, to domestic cricketer Nasir Abbas and politician Andleeb Abbas. She belongs to a politically-connected family in Pakistan and studied at Aston University in Birmingham. After that, she got an MBA from the University of Warwick, followed by working for two years for Dolce and Gabbana at Harrods.
Her father represented Faisalabad and Hafizabad cricket teams and was a bowler. He also belonged to the same college as Ramiz Raja. Meanwhile, her mother is a senior member of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaaf party. She also covered a few cricket events as a journalist, including the 1999 World Cup.
Abbas’ husband is Hamza Kardar, and the duo married in November 2019 in Lahore. He is the son of former finance minister and former governor of State Bank of Pakistan, Shahid Hafeez Kardar, who himself is the son of Abdul Hafeez Kardar, Pakistan’s first cricket captain.
Abbas’ journalist career began when she auditioned to appear as a guest on a show on Dunya News for the 2015 World Cup. She was successful, and it launched her career as a presenter and commentator. She travelled to England for Dunya News, to cover Pakistan’s 2016 tour, and also appeared as a guest on BBCs Test match Special.
She is also one of the presenters of the Pakistan Super League and Abu Dhabi T10. She has worked with TEN Sports, Star Sports. She has also hosted a web series, where she has interviewed various Pakistani cricketers. In May 2019, she created history by becoming the first woman sports reporter and commentator to cover the 2019 World Cup from Pakistan.
Fan-favourite Pakistani presenter Zainab Abbas, who has gained much acclaim over the past few years, has shared that the parent of a “notable player” called her after she wrote unfavourable facts about the player on social media.
During an interview with a digital sports network, Abbas, who has represented Pakistan in cricket tournaments all around the world, was asked how fans reacted when she wrote unfavourable things about players.
Abbas laughed and said that not only fans but also parents of players would reach out to her to not say negative things.
“I am not lying here. I got a call from the parent of a notable cricketer. I was asked to not write something I wrote about the cricketer based on facts. Whatever I wrote was just based on facts and you can find that on Cricinfo,” she disclosed.
“It happens,” she added.
Abbas’s voice in Pakistan cricket is too familiar. Cricket fans follow her opinions related to the game.
Meanwhile, in the same interview, she also claimed that certain players present gifts to journalists and ask for favours.
“I know for a fact that certain players have been giving a lot of gifts to certain journalists to make sure that they talk in their favour. This is a rather common practice. You increase your [digital] following, and this all happens automatically. But yes, this is a very prevalent practice. If not gifts, then tickets can do the deal as well,” the presenter said.
Moreover, she said social media trends for players are probably run by their managers and players mostly don’t have any idea about it.