'No in­ter­na­tional cricket for Butt, Amir, Asif un­til 2016'


Three Pak­istan crick­eters will have to un­dergo a six-month re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion pro­gram be­fore they can re­turn to in­ter­na­tional cricket af­ter their five-year ban ends on Septem­ber 1.

The Pak­istan Cricket Board (PCB) will al­low open­ing bats­man Sal­man Butt and fast bowlers Mo­ham­mad Asif and Mo­ham­mad Amir to play di­vi­sion two and club cricket from Septem­ber 2, but the trio will be barred from first class and in­ter­na­tional match un­til the pro­gram ends on Fe­bru­ary 28 next year.

The ICC banned the crick­eters for at least five years for spot-fix­ing af­ter Asif and Amir bowled de­lib­er­ate no-balls dur­ing a Test match in 2010 in which Pak­istan was led by Butt.

PCB chair­man Sha­har­yar Khan said the board had to con­sider the pos­si­ble neg­a­tive ef­fects of re-in­sert­ing the play­ers into Pak­istani cricket. "Hav­ing con­sid­ered all these fac­tors we have come up with an ac­tion plan that will en­sure a smooth and grad­ual in­duc­tion of these play­ers into cricket," Khan said in a state­ment.

The three crick­eters will start work­ing with PCB's vig­i­lance and anti-cor­rup­tion depart­ment from Septem­ber 2 and will de­liver lec­tures in 16 re­gions all over Pak­istan. The PCB had al­lowed the trio to prac­tice at the Na­tional Cricket Academy from Septem­ber 2 but they will not use the fa­cil­ity when na­tional team play­ers are present. The PCB has also asked the three play­ers to regularly visit or­phan­ages and schools "in or­der to pub­licly con­trib­ute to­ward so­cial re­spon­si­bil­ity obli­ga­tions."

The trio will also have in­te­gra­tion ses­sions with the na­tional team's bowl­ing coach Mush­taq Ahmed and Pak­istan play­ers so that if they re­turn to in­ter­na­tional or first class cricket they have "con­ge­nial en­vi­ron­ment" in the dress­ing room.

"The (three) play­ers should have an apolo­getic at­ti­tude to­ward their fel­low play­ers, se­lec­tors and other stake­hold­ers as a sign of sin­cere re­morse," the PCB said.

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