The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has allowed tainted batsman Sharjeel Khan to play club cricket in what could be a massive step towards his eventual induction into the national fold.
Earlier, Tainted international cricketer Sharjeel Khan, who was suspended from playing cricket in a spot-fixing case, has offered unconditional apology to the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB), team-mates, fans and family.
Sharjeel was suspended from national and international cricket for five years by the PCB in 2017 along with Khalid Latif and Nasir Jamshed in a spot-fixing case which erupted on the very first day of the second edition of the Pakistan Super League’s (PSL).
After completing half of the period of ban, Sharjeel was allowed to re-enter into competitive cricket after undergoing half of his ineligibility period and that he wil go through a thorough rehabilitation process.
Now after given clearance by the board to resume playing club cricket, Sharjeel Khan is set to be part of the players draft for the fifth edition of PSL.
Sharjeel, according to sources close to the matter, passed on his second attempt the PCB Anti-Corruption and Security Unit’s written test.
He will now have to give lectures in Bahawalpur, Sheikhupura, and Karachi, where he will reportedly have to express his regret and explain to junior players how corruption can hurt them. He will also have to visit an orphanage as part of his rehabilitation.
Once that is out of the way, Sharjeel’s name could be added to the pool of Pakistan Super League (PSL) players.
Based on his performances in the PSL, he could even be considered for the tour of the Netherlands, Ireland and England in the summer of 2020. However, it is unlikely that he would be allowed to play in domestic cricket in the ongoing season.
Earlier, In a column for cricket.com.au in April, Misbah-ul-Haq who was Sharjeel’s skipper at Islamabad, made his position clear on what he believed should be the fate of players found guilty of spot- or match-fixing.
“We need to set a tough precedent this time. If the investigation makes it 100 per cent clear that the players were involved in corrupt activities, then we need to show everyone that there is no room in cricket for such players,” Misbah said of the PCB investigation.
“They should be banned for life if found guilty.”
It is pertinent to mention here that Sharjeel was handed a five-year ban in 2017 – half of which was suspended – for his part in a match-fixing scandal in the PSL that year. He admitted his guilt earlier this year and entered the rehab programme.
In the past, former Pakistan captain Salman Butt, pacers Mohammad Asif and Mohammad Amir had also been caught up in the similar case. After completing half of their ban imposed by the International Cricket Council, they all went through the rehab process by apoligising in public and held press conferences separately.