Controversial cricketer Umar Akmal has been banned from all forms of cricket for a period of 3 years on corruption charges by the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) Disciplinary Panel.
The PCB Anti-Corruption officials had charged Umar with in two separate cases of not reporting an approach made to him to spot fix matches in the Pakistan Super League 5.
Umar, who was provisionally suspended on Feb 20 and barred from playing in the Pakistan Super League for his franchise Quetta Gladiators, has been charged for breaching Article 2.4.4 of PCB’s Anti-Corruption Code.
Umar had until March 31 to respond to the show cause notice sent to him by the PCB but he had decided not to challenge it.
The PCB had then referred the matter to the Chairman of the Disciplinary Panel Justice (retired) Fazal-e-Miran Chauhan, former Lahore High Court Judge.
Umar is the second high-profile cricketer banned on corruption charges after opening batsman Sharjeel Khan, who was handed a 5-year ban (half of it suspended) in 2017 for his role in the spot-fixing scandal that marred the PSL earlier that year.
Some big names in Pakistan cricket have repeatedly asked the PCB to set an example by banishing the fixing-accused players with former captain Javed Miandad even going on to say that these cricketers should be hanged for bringing their country into disrepute.
“Players who are involved in spot-fixing should be severely punished,” he said.
“Spot-fixers should be hanged because it is similar to killing someone and so the punishment should also be on the same lines. An example should be set so that no player even thinks about doing something like this,” Miandad had said on his YouTube channel.
Mohammad Hafeez was one of the first to suggest a life ban on all corruption-accused players in Pakistan cricket, a thought which former skipper Shahid Afridi also agreed with.
“I feel these examples should have been set in the past but this didn’t happen and that is why we have seen such cases on regular basis,” Afridi told the Geo channel.
“I have nothing against anyone but even now if the Board wants to set an example it can do that. Only then can we hope to curtail such cases,” he added.
Afridi who remains a big supporter of Umar Akmal and consistently picked him in the national team when he was captain also said that he was disappointed to see the talented batsman get entangled in controversy.
“Umar really needs to look at the company he keeps. He needs to get his priorities sorted out. He is a fine batsman but he can’t keep on carrying like this.”