Pakistan news July 1, 2013

Amir could be allowed PCB training facilities


A five-member ICC sub-committee, which was set up after the 2013 annual conference to review the anti-corruption code, will also look into relaxing certain conditions of the five-year ban imposed on Pakistan fast bowler Mohammad Amir after the spot-fixing scandal of 2010. While the most stringent stipulations of the ban will still remain, the PCB has requested the ICC to consider a few concessions, especially with regard to Amir using the board's facilities for training.

A PCB spokesman told ESPNcricinfo: "The ICC, during the annual conference week, constituted a five-member committee that will review and recommend amendments to the ICC Anti-Corruption Code, and on recommendation from the PCB, will also provide its suggestions to the ICC board on the ban related to Mohammad Amir." The ICC was unwilling to the reveal who would comprise the sub-committee.

Regardless of the recommendation from the committee, Amir will not be able to play any kind of club, domestic, or international cricket and will not train with the national team. The only significant allowance that could be made is that he regain access to the training facilities offered by the PCB.

ESPNcricinfo understands that the PCB made the request to the ICC only because Amir had complied with conditions of the ban: not committing any further breach of the anti-corruption code and undergoing the ICC's educational and rehabilitation programme. Amir will be available for national selection from September 3, 2015, and the PCB sought the relaxation of some terms so that he could be ready to play as soon as his ban ends, rather than spend more months in training.

Amir had not been aware of the PCB's request but seemed content with anything that would help him return to cricket. He hasn't been doing full-fledged training but has kept himself in good shape. By the time he completes his ban he will be 23. "I will come hard despite the five-year in-activeness," Amir had told ESPNcricinfo last year. "I want to come back with my head held high, with a new spirit and as a role model."

Salman Butt, the Pakistan captain who was banned for ten years by the ICC on charges of spot-fixing during the Lord's Test in 2010, had made a similar request in a personal capacity two days before the ICC's annual conference. His case, however, was not accepted as it was believed that Butt had not fully complied with the ICC's conditions.

Butt had recently taken the first step in his rehabilitation by publicly admitting to and apologising for his part in the spot-fixing scandal. He also indicated his willingness to participate in the PCB and ICC's rehabilitation programmes. Five out of Butt's ten-year ban from any cricketing activities were to be a suspended sentence on condition that he would commit no further breach of the anti-corruption code and participate in a PCB-controlled anti-corruption education programme.

Of the three players banned by the ICC before the criminal trial began in London - fast bowler Mohammad Asif being the third - only Amir had pleaded guilty to the charges at the Southwark Crown Court. Both Butt and Asif had pleaded not guilty and appealed their bans at the Court of Arbitration in Sport in Lausanne, Switzerland.

Umar Farooq is ESPNcricinfo's Pakistan correspondent. He tweets here

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Android on July 18, 2013, 6:59 GMT

    Junaid Khan is better than Amir check out the stats

  • Dummy4 on July 3, 2013, 12:14 GMT

    amir was pressurized by salman and asif in the spot fixing scandal in england .....he should be forgiven as pak need him to come back and replace wahab riaz... who is the only bowling weak link compared to junaid and irfan

  • Zahid on July 2, 2013, 21:19 GMT

    I think he should be given one more chance to play for Pakistan

  • asad on July 2, 2013, 19:24 GMT

    It's fair for Amir to get access to training facilities becauses he accepted his mistake immediately. I don't think his ban should be decreased though because if that happens then future players being caught in spot fixing will be in hope of decreasing their bans because of M. Amir. Anyways he did do spot-fixing and he deserves punishment for it,

  • Will on July 2, 2013, 18:52 GMT

    The other two senior figures should have received a lot heavier punishments as they were guilty of leading on a vulnerable impressionable child. If Amir plays before the other two are considered, I believe that is fair. We must all be clear on one thing though. It makes NO difference that Pakistan's chances in world cricket will be better served with Amir in the team - the same sanction should apply to the worst players as well as potentially the best ones.

  • Cricinfouser on July 2, 2013, 16:36 GMT

    @Moizullah Malik - Amir maintained his innocence throughout the ICC disciplinary hearing in spite of overwhelming evidence to the contrary. You are right that he didn't actually mislead the authorities since his pathetic attempt to do so was doomed to failure. There are plenty of talented, honest players out there. The idea that allowing a cheat to play is for the 'betterment of cricket' is absurd.

  • Nasser on July 2, 2013, 12:11 GMT

    Brilliant idea from Chucky Doll!

  • Dummy4 on July 2, 2013, 11:54 GMT

    his ban should be atleast 3 or 4 years

  • Dummy4 on July 2, 2013, 10:28 GMT

    great news for world cricket

  • Jason on July 2, 2013, 9:23 GMT

    Really this is the thin edge of the wedge, first training facilities, then playing for affiliated sides, then a request to allow him back to play FC games, then back to play in the 2015 WC.

    He was banned from playing associated cricket, that means he shouldnt have access to any Board run facilities.