<
>

PCB slaps corruption charges on Nasir Jamshed

Nasir Jamshed chipped in with 30 Getty Images

After 12 months of allegations and only a minor charge, the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has blinked and made its first major move against Nasir Jamshed. The PCB's anti-corruption unit has formally charged the opening batsman for as many as five breaches of their anti-corruption code. Jamshed is already serving a one-year ban after the PCB had found him guilty of the relatively minor charge of non-cooperation in the PSL spot-fixing investigation - that ends on February 13.

But all through the last year, the PCB firmly believed that Jamshed was more central to the plots to corrupt games during the PSL and it was made clear several times by the board that he would face further consequences. That, potentially, could be the case now, as Jamshed has been charged with fixing, accepting money to improperly influence games as well as inducing other players to indulge in corrupt activity.

Jamshed was also arrested in the UK by the National Crime Agency in February last year in connection to this case, though he was quickly released on bail. That investigation is believed to be ongoing, though officials familiar with the case believe a decision is expected in a few weeks - Jamshed, these officials believe, is not the centre of the NCA's investigation.

"The Pakistan Cricket Board has today issued a notice of charge to cricketer Nasir Jamshed, wherein he has been charged with multiple violations of Articles 2.1.1, 2.1.2, 2.1.3, 2.1.4 and 2.4.4 of the PCB's Anti-Corruption Code for Participants ("the Code")," a statement said. "Nasir Jamshed now has fourteen (14) days to respond to the notice of charge."

According to officials involved with the case, the PCB acted after the emergence of fresh evidence, centering around alleged meetings prior to the PSL in the UK. The board has, over the past year, claimed to have overwhelming evidence against Jamshed and also said that they have been waiting for the NCA to share their evidence - the latter has not occurred, though an NCA official did appear as a witness via video link in one of the PCB's tribunal hearings. At least one part of the evidence against Jamshed is a collection of WhatsApp voice recordings allegedly between Jamshed and others also implicated in the case; these recordings were leaked to the media.

Jamshed has all along denied any wrongdoing and has, in fact, threatened to take the PCB to court for maligning his name. He is based in Birmingham and has been communicating with the PCB through his Lahore-based lawyer, and has appeared before the PCB tribunal via video link.

Jamshed was the fifth Pakistani player sanctioned in relation to the spot-fixing case that marred the start of the second season of the PSL last February. Sharjeel Khan, Khalid Latif, Mohammad Irfan and Mohammad Nawaz were all fined and banned for various periods of time, for a variety of charges. Shahzaib Hasan was also charged and is presently undergoing legal proceedings before a PCB three-man tribunal.

Jamshed hasn't played an international game for Pakistan since the 2015 World Cup and last featured in domestic cricket in December 2016.