Spot-fixing controversy January 4, 2011

Suspended trio head to Qatar for hearings

ESPNcricinfo staff

Suspended Pakistan trio Salman Butt, Mohammad Asif and Mohammad Amir have flown out to Qatar to attend a hearing of the ICC's Anti-Corruption Tribunal. The three-member tribunal headed by Michael Beloff QC will hold a six-day long session starting Thursday before delivering its verdict on the three players.

The players were suspended by the ICC in September following spot-fixing allegations against them during the Lord's Test against England a month earlier. The allegations were raised after a sting operation by Britain's News of the World tabloid claiming that several Pakistani players took money from a bookmaker to bowl deliberate no-balls.

"My lawyer has prepared the case extensively and I hope that I will be cleared," Amir told reporters at Lahore airport. "This is the toughest period of my life but I am confident that it will be over and I will be playing for Pakistan soon."

Salman is being represented by British-based lawyer Yasin Patel, Asif by Allan Cameron, brother of British Prime Minister David Cameron, while Aamer's lawyer is Shahid Karim from Pakistan.

The ICC's three-man tribunal includes Beloff, Justice Albie Sachs of South Africa and Sharad Rao of Kenya. Beloff, the ICC's code of conduct commissioner, had chaired the hearings into the appeals of Amir and Butt against their suspensions in Dubai, and had upheld the ICC's decision.