Pakistan’s attacking batsman, Umar Akmal will feel a sigh of relief as his ban from cricket has been reduced from 18 months – which was initially 3 years – to 12 months and he will soon return to cricket.
The Court of Arbitration for Sports (CAS) has taken this decision to mitigate his ban by a period of 6 months, but an amount of PKR4.25 million is being levied on the wicket-keeper batsman.
In February last year, Umar Akmal was suspended by the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) for failing to report fixing approaches by bookies. On 27 April 2020, the Chairman Disciplinary Panel had found Umar Akmal guilty on two charges of separate breaches of Article 2.4.4 of the PCB Anti-Corruption Code in two unrelated incidents and handed a three-year suspension
“CAS has announced its decision on the Appeals filed by PCB and Umar Akmal against the Order of the Independent Adjudicator. CAS through a consolidated Order on both Appeals has been pleased to impose on Umar Akmal a sanction of a 12-month ban and a fine of PKR4.25million on one count of breaching Article 2.4.4 of the PCB Anti-Corruption Code,” the PCB said in a statement.
“Umar Akmal, who was suspended on 20 February 2020, will now be eligible to reintegrate into competitive cricket subject to deposits of fine of PKR4,250,000 and undergoing the program of rehabilitation under the PCB Anti-Corruption Code,” the statement added.
CAS refused to return Umar Akmal’s two mobile phones
The 30-year-old appealed the suspension and on 29 July 2020, the Independent Adjudicator modified the period decreasing it to 18 months. Now, once again, after another appeal, the ban has been reduced further to 12 months and he will be seen in action soon, provided he pays the final and undergoes a rehabilitation program as prescribed by the PCB Anti-Corruption Code.
The CAS has refused to return Akmal’s two mobile phones which were seized at that time and will remain with the PCB for investigations.
“CAS has also refused the request of Umar Akmal seeking return of his two mobile phones, which are in PCB’s custody for some different investigation and held that under the PCB Anti-Corruption Code it has the power to do so.
“The PCB once again urges and remind all participants to abide by their duty and promptly report any approaches to the anti-corruption offices and help themselves as well as the anti-corruption unit effort to eliminate the anathema of fixing,” the statement further added.
The right-hander last played for Pakistan in October 2019 and has been ousted owing to his low returns with the bat.