Pakistan cricketer Sharjeel Khan banned for 5 years

BY AP • August 30, 2017

ISLAMABAD (AP) The Pakistan Cricket Board's anti-corruption tribunal banned test cricketer Sharjeel Khan for five years for spot-fixing on Wednesday.

The tribunal backdated the ban to Feb. 10, 2017, when the 28-year-old Sharjeel was first suspended during the Pakistan Super League. He was sent home from the United Arab Emirates along with Islamabad United teammate Khalid Latif.

Half of Sharjeel's sentence will be suspended if he goes through the PCB's rehabilitation process.

''We are going to appeal against them,'' said Sharjeel's lawyer, Shaigan Ijaz. ''We are objecting to the decision because we believe three serious charges have not been proven.''

Sharjeel stood with his lawyer during a news conference but didn't take any questions.

Sharjeel faced five charges of breaching of the PCB's anti-corruption code. He was found guilty on all five counts by the tribunal and was handed the minimum punishment.

The three-member tribunal was headed by retired Lahore High Court judge Asghar Haider, with former PCB chairman Tauqir Zia and former Pakistan captain Wasim Bari as its members.

PCB legal advisor Tafazzul Rizvi said the verdict shows the cricket board had solid evidence against the batsman.

''He (Sharjeel) is found guilty and with this our case against the player stood vindicated,'' Rizvi said. ''The judgment is a proof that all the evidence was strong enough against player.''

Rizvi also said the suspended sentence doesn't mean that the player could return to cricket immediately after completing half of his punishment.

''There is a lengthy process of rehabilitation which has to be followed,'' he said.

Sharjeel made his test debut against Australia in January and scored 44 runs. He has scored 812 runs in 25 ODIs and 360 runs in 15 Twenty20 internationals.

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