Pakistan news March 19, 2010

Malik and Naved cleared to play in Bangladesh

Cricinfo staff

The Pakistan Cricket Board has granted permission for two of its banned players, Shoaib Malik and Naved-ul-Hasan, to play in a domestic Twenty20 league in Bangladesh. This comes just two days after the PCB allowed Mohammad Yousuf to play in the country.

"The penalties on these players were for international cricket for the Pakistan team, but they are eligible to play in domestic competitions, so they are cleared to play in Bangladesh," Wasim Bari, the PCB's chief operating officer, told AFP.

The announcements have come shortly after the PCB banned and fined seven leading players on various charges during the disastrous tour of Australia which ended in February. Pakistan lost all three Tests, five ODIs and the lone Twenty20 match on tour.

Former captains Younis Khan and Yousuf were banned indefinitely while Malik, also a former skipper, and allrounder Naved received one-year bans. Shahid Afridi, Kamran Akmal and Umar Akmal were fined between Rs 2-3 million [USD24,000-35,000] and put on six-month probations.

The bans, however, do not extend to domestic cricket in Pakistan and competitions abroad although the PCB confirmed no player can participate in overseas competitions without prior approval.

"Besides Malik and Naved, some other players also applied for permission and we have an open mind on that," Bari said.

Several members of Pakistan's World Twenty20 squad, including Afridi, Razzaq and Mohammad Hafeez, were scheduled to play in Bangladesh later this month but Cricinfo understands that none of the 20-member contingent (15 plus five reserves) will be allowed to travel as the board wants them to participate in the training camp prior to leaving for the Caribbean late next month.