Aamer hopes for return

2013-07-02 20:01
Mohammad Aamer (AFP)
Lahore - Pakistan fast bowler Mohammad Aamer has said Tuesday he hoped to play international cricket again "as soon as possible" after the game's governing body said it would consider a request for his ban to be relaxed.

Aamer, along with former captain Salman Butt and pace partner Mohammad Asif, was banned for a minimum of five years by the ICC on charges of spot-fixing during Pakistan's tour of England in 2010.

Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) interim chairman Najam Sethi raised Aamer's ban at the annual meeting of the International Cricket Council (ICC) in London last week.

On Monday a PCB spokesman told AFP that the ICC had formed a five-member committee to look into Aamer's ban.

ICC committee chairman Giles Clarke, also chairman of the England and Wales Cricket Board, confirmed the formation of the committee.

In a telephone interview with AFP on Tuesday, 21-year-old Aamer -- who was seen as a rapidly developing paceman in 2010 -- said he was "thankful" at the prospect of certain conditions of the ban being relaxed.

"I am thankful to the PCB chairman Najam Sethi for raising voice for me on the ICC platform and now ICC forming a committee has given me a new vigour to restart my career," Aamer said.

"This is the first time that someone in Pakistan cricket has made an effort for me and I am very happy at the prospect of getting a relaxation."

All three players along with their agent Mazhar Majeed were jailed on charges of corruption by a UK court in 2011.

While Aamer pleaded guilty before the UK court, Butt and Asif appealed against the ban in the Switzerland based Court of Arbitration for Sports, but were rejected in February this year.

Aamer said he had apologised to the nation and has cooperated with the ICC's Anti-Corruption and Security Unit (ACSU).

"I have cooperated with the ACSU and will do it as and when required, so I hope that I will get to play international cricket as soon as possible."

The talented pacer, caught in the controversy at a very early stage in his career, said the events were behind him now.

"I was enjoying cricket and suddenly that happened but those sad events are behind me. I am training well and I am eager to play for my country again."

Aamer, likened to Pakistan's legendary left-armer Wasim Akram, took 51 wickets in 14 Tests. His tally of wickets in 15 one-day matches was 25 and he took 23 wickets in 18 Twenty20 internationals.

Former Pakistan great Imran Khan tipped Aamer to be the hottest property at international level in 2009.

Read more on:    mohammad aamer  |  cricket

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