Don't blame the pitch: Graeme Swann
26 Feb 2021
The Court of Arbitration for Sports (CAS) has reduced Pakistan wicket-keeper batsman Umar Akmal’s ban by six months. The 18 months ban, which was imposed on him by the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) is now over, making him eligible to return to representative cricket.
The PCB had banned Umar just ahead of the start of last year’s PSL on February 20th. Thus his ban is officially over now, though he would have to go through a rehabilitation programme run by the anti-corruption unit of the board. He also needs to pay a fine of PKR 4.25 million (approx $27000) to be fully integrated back into the cricket system.
The Lahore born who has represented Pakistan in 221 games across formats and scored more than 5800 international runs was banned by the PCB after the emergence of a call recording where the junior Akmal was caught talking to a bookie.
After PCB’s decision to ban him for 36 months was overruled and his ban was reduced to 18 months by an independent enquiry committee set up by the board, Akmal moved to CAS to get the ban lifted. PCB approached the sports arbitration court to increase the duration of the ban. The ruling is in favour of neither, but Akmal would cherish it nonetheless.