India and Pune Warriors player Rahul Sharma on Monday said he will stop playing cricket if his blood test returns positive for drugs after the leg—spinner was detained at a rave party in Mumbai.
Sharma along with Pune Warriors team—mate Wayne Parnell were among the 94 people detained by the police after a raid at Hotel Oakwoods in Juhu, Mumbai.
“I know I am innocent, if the reports (of blood tests) are positive, I will leave cricket,” Sharma said, adding that the team management has full trust in them.
The player’s blood test report is expected in the next couple of days.
“Those who know me, including my team—mates, know that I have never touched champagne after victories. It’s a big thing.”
He refuted the allegation that he was present at a rave party at a Mumbai hotel, claiming that he had gone there to attend a birthday celebration.
“I was invited to a birthday party. Wayne Parnell was with me, I did not know that there was a rave party at the hotel,” said the spinner.
“We reached there at around 7 in the evening and all of a sudden within half an hour of us reaching there, the police raid happened. We didn’t know what was happening, I asked the police officers and they told me that a raid was in progress,” he told PTI—Bhasha.
“The police said there will be checking and those who are clean, they will let them go.”
Sharma said he has been cooperative with the police and claimed that he has never touched alcohol.
“We have cooperated with the police and have even given medical tests. I belong to a simple family and have not even had a beer in my life, where does the question of attending a rave party arise?” he asked.
“I have told everything to the team management and things would be clear once the medical report comes out,” he said.
Parnell claims innocence
South African cricketer Wayne Parnell claimed that he and fellow Pune Warriors team—mate Rahul Sharma were innocent, and that they were “at the wrong place at the wrong time” after the duo were detained at the raid.
Although Parnell admitted that both the players were present in the party at the Oakwood Premier Hotel, they said they were unaware of any drugs being supplied there.
“Myself and Rahul were invited to someone’s birthday. We got there about 5:00pm in the afternoon and by 7 p.m., the police officers were there. Obviously, once we were inside, we got caught indoors,” he said.
“It is unfortunate we were there. But at the end of the day, it was just a simple case of being at a wrong place at the wrong time,” Parnell said.
“We weren’t aware of any drugs there or any rave party. It was out on a pool terrace,” he told ‘Times Now’.
In their defence, Parnell said both he and Rahul are teetotalers.
“People who know me know that I don’t drink or smoke. We both were just drinking water and dancing,” he said.
Parnell said they went for the party after being invited by a common friend for a birthday bash.
“We met last year during the IPL. We phone each other and speak to each other regularly. They just said it is one of their friend’s birthday, so we just went there to meet them.
Because the IPL has finished and all our matches are over, it was the last day to get together. It is unfortunate that this has happened,” he said.
The South African left—arm pacer said as he was not guilty, he preferred to show his face during his arrest.
“I wanna fully co—operate with the investigation. That’s why last night I did not cover my face, which would have meant I am guilty,” Parnell said.
Parnell also said that he enjoys the full backing of his countrymen and IPL team Pune Warriors in this hour of crisis.
“Everyone who messaged me has supported me. Back home all are pretty confident that I am not guilty.
“The Pune team is also fully supporting us. They know us very well and know that we won’t participate in any such thing,” he said.
Parnell and Rahul along with 94 others were detained during a raid on a rave party Sunday night, but were let off on Monday after collection of their blood and urine samples.