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ICC imposes lengthy sanctions on tainted Pak trio

Source: PTI
Last updated on: February 05, 2011 23:05 IST
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The International Cricket Council on Saturday banned former Pakistan captain Salman Butt for 10 years and sanctioned seven and five years of ineligibility for pace duo of Mohammad Asif and Mohammad Amir after finding the three cricketers guilty of spot-fixing.

In its verdict, the ICC imposed a 10 year ban on Butt with five years of suspended sentence, Asif was awarded a seven-year sanction with two years suspended, while Amir was banned for five years.

"The tribunal heard the charges as Amir agreed to bowl no-balls, and did bowl no-balls and Butt was party to the bowling of those deliberate balls, and the tribunal impose the following sanctions," a statement read out at the tribunal said.

 "On Butt's ten years ineligibility, five years of which are suspended on the condition that he doesn't commit further breaches of the code, and that he participates under the auspices of the Pakistan Cricket Board in a programme of anti-corruption education," the statement said.

"On Asif, a sanction of seven years of ineligibility, two years of which are suspended on the condition that he commits no further breach of the code and also participates in an anti-corruption programme.

"On Amir, a sanction of five years ineligibility. No further sanctions are imposed on any player," it added.

The verdict was announced after a lengthy nine-hour hearing in front of ICC's three-man tribunal comprising Michael Beloff QC, Sharad Rao and Justice Albie Sachs and the players and their legal teams at the Qatar Financial Center in Doha.

There was lot of drama and argument in the hearing as the players' lawyers requested the ICC to adjourn the verdict as it could have an impact on the criminal case filed by UK's Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) against the players in London on Friday.

- The Match-fixing Episode-II

The charges relate to alleged incidents of corruption during a Test match against England at Lord's last year when a British tabloid claimed the players were involved in spot-fixing.

The players have been suspended by ICC from all forms of cricket since September 3 last year after the tabloid alleged that they bowled deliberate no-balls at prearranged times during the fourth Test at Lord's.

The trio was alleged to have obtained 150,000 pounds ($241,000) through a bookie Mazhar Majeed who was believed to have accepted  50,000 pound to set up the deal.

The members of the ICC tribunal, headed by Michael Beloff, heard the case for six days last month before deferring the announcement on the request of players' lawyers.

Meanwhile, in a separate development on Friday, the three players as well as Majeed were issued summons by Britain's Crown Prosecution Service to a first hearing at City of Westminster Magistrates' Court on March 17.

The trio, however, have repeatedly denied wrongdoing and said expressed hope that they will come out clean from all the charges.

The bans on the tainted trio have come just a fortnight before the ICC World Cup which starts in Dhaka on February 19.

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