Danish Kaneria's exclusion from the national team looks set to continue for a while yet, after the PCB has said the communication the legspinner sent the board from his former employers Essex "failed to satisfy requirements" of the integrity committee.
The PCB had asked Kaneria to send them a certificate of clearance from Essex following his arrest by police and eventual release last summer in a spot-fixing case involving another player from the county. Earlier this week, Kaneria sent the board an email from Essex in which the club thanked him for his services and explained the reasons he was not being offered another contract. It was an email he had already submitted to the board late last year.
"We have responded to Kaneria," PCB spokesman Nadeem Sarward told ESPNcricinfo. "The clearance letter he sent is something he sent to us six months ago and which we had. We sought legal opinion and confirmed with the ECB, and decided that the document failed to satisfy the requirements of the PCB. So Kaneria has been advised to provide a clearance certificate at the earliest."
What exactly constitutes a "clearance certificate" is unclear: "We just want an idea of what Essex say about him and the case. They were his employers at the time. Will they consider him now?" is what the board's legal advisor Taffazul Rizvi told ESPNcricinfo recently. Whether or not Essex will or can provide such a document is another matter altogether. Indications from board officials suggest that such a certificate may not arrive so readily, which leaves a question mark over Kaneria's international future.
Kaneria, presently Pakistan's leading Test wicket-taker, has not played internationals since last summer. He was selected as part of the squad to face South Africa in a series in the UAE in November 2010, but was prevented from travelling by the PCB at the last minute. The board said he had not been cleared by the integrity committee, newly-formed in the wake of the Lord's spot-fixing scandal.
Since then, Kaneria has submitted various financial records and documents and appeared in front of the committee several times, but hasn't managed to satisfy members. Until recently, the committee was asking him for transcripts of his questioning by police in the case, something Kaneria and his lawyers insisted they could not provide as it was part of an ongoing investigation in the UK.
"This is an integrity issue for us," Rizvi had said nearly two weeks ago, when asking for the clearance certificate. "The committee is not just made up of board members or cricketers, it has an ex-judge of the Supreme Court on it and in their opinion, Kaneria had not satisfied them so he has not been cleared. We can't take a risk, so we have asked for this clearance now."
Osman Samiuddin is Pakistan editor of ESPNcricinfo