Tainted Pak cricketers vow to return to international cricket

Lahore, Feb.6: Talented but tainted former Pakistani cricketers Salman Butt, Mohammad Asif and Mohammad Aamer have vowed to make a return to international cricket, three years to the day of them being banned for spot-fixing.

It maybe recalled that on February 5, 2011 an anti-corruption tribunal of the International Cricket Council (ICC) banned the three players for a minimum of five years for arranging no balls during the Lord’s Test against England in August 2010.

Butt, 29, who has been banned for ten years, with five years suspended, was quoted by Sports24, as saying that he is trying very hard to forget the event, but some one or the other, always turns up to remind him of what he calls that tough day.

Asif was banned for seven years with two suspended, while Aamer was banned for five years, meaning all of them could return to the game in August 2015.

The players said that there are still playing cricket and are very keen to stage a comeback.

West Indian Marlon Samuels is the only player ever to return to international cricket after serving a two-year ban on fixing.

Butt, who played 33 Tests, 78 one-day internationals and 24 Twenty20s for Pakistan, says he wants the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) to help him get permission to play first-class cricket.

The ICC last year formed a committee to consider relaxing some of the sanctions of Aamer’s ban.

Asif has found a sideline on the silver screen and is about to star in a joint Indian-Pakistani film, but says he wants to return to the game.

Twenty-one-year-old Aamer said he is looking forward to returning to international cricket. (ANI)