Amir let off with a warning from ICC over breach of ban

Mohammad Amir has escaped with a warning for breaking his ban on playing cricket by appearing for a UK side.
Mohammad Amir has been given further clarification of what he can and can’t do during his five-year ban from cricket.
Mohammad Amir has been given further clarification of what he can and can’t do during his five-year ban from cricket.

Mohammad Amir, the former Pakistanbowler currently serving a ban for spot-fixing, has been let off with a warning by the International Cricket Council (ICC) after he appeared for a UK club in a league game in June.

Amir took part in one game for Addington 1743 in the Surrey Cricket League (SCL) Division One, playing a central role in the win with four wickets and an innings of 60.

That appearance was in breach of the sanctions imposed on him by the ICC after a hearing into the spot-fixing case in which he was originally implicated found him guilty.

The tribunal banned him for five years - and fellow players Salman Butt and Mohammad Asif for 10 and seven years - and barred him, under ICC stipulations, from participating in any game at a recognised level.

As it was an official game Amir could have faced further sanctions. But the ICC has decided to let the matter rest with a warning.

"He has been warned officially and the ICC has provided him with further clarification with regards to the conditions of his suspension," an ICC spokesperson told The National. The letter is believed to have been sent to Amir late last month.

This was not the first time Amir had appeared in a club game since the scandal broke. In January this year, while serving a provisional suspension, he played for a club in Rawalpindi, although that game was eventually found to be an unofficial one.

Addington 1743, on the other hand, have faced much harsher consequences.

They were initially expelled by the league on July 27 for having fielded a player banned by the ICC as well as one of a "notably higher standard than the normal level of that division," according to a league statement.

The expulsion order was originally suspended and due to remain in place until the end of the 2013 season, but according to the league's website, the club was fully expelled with immediate effect on August 21.

The final expulsion was based "on the continued non-payment of fines which had already resulted in the club's current suspension", and a "further serious disciplinary breach which occurred on July 30.

"As a direct result, the club was deemed to be in breach of the suspended expulsion order issued by the disciplinary panel on July 19 2011." As a consequence the club's records will be removed from league records.

Amir, Asif and Butt were found guilty by the tribunal of having bowled deliberate, pre-planned no balls during the Lord's Test against England in August 2010.

The trio continue to protest their innocence and are currently facing a criminal charges in the UK over the incident.

Meanwhile, the trio's former teammates flew out to Zimbabwe yesterday hoping to give Waqar Younis, the outgoing coach, a fitting farewell from his tenure in the position.

Waqar steps down at the end of the series for health reasons after a tumultuous 18-month stint in charge.

Pakistan play one Test, three one-day internationals (ODI) and two Twenty20s against an upbeat home side coming off a Test and ODI series win against Bangladesh.

"We were shocked by the sudden announcement of him leaving after the tour, but we all respect that and want to do well and win the coming series for the coach," Misbah-ul-Haq, the captain, told Agence France-Presse.

Pakistan travel with an inexperienced side, having chosen to rest regulars such as Umar Gul, Wahab Riaz and Abdur Rehman for the tour. "We have some promising fast bowlers, with Sohail Tanvir staging a comeback and I am sure all these bowlers will try their level best to help Pakistan come out victorious on the tour," Misbah said.

"We are aware of their [Zimbabwe's] progress and cannot take them lightly."

Pakistan have also called up Shoaib Malik, after the former captain was cleared by the Pakistan board's integrity committee.

Shoaib has not played for Pakistan since July 2010, a casualty of the fallout of the spot-fixing scandal.

Pakistan open on Sunday with a two-day practice match in Bulawayo. The first Test starts on September 1.


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Published: August 26, 2011 04:00 AM


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