Pakistan Cricket Board Sunday served Umar Akmal with a notice, hours after his comments on a TV channel about being offered money during the 2015 World Cup in Australia to “leave two balls alone in return for $200,000”. The PCB has asked the youngest of Akmal brothers to represent Pakistan to appear before the board’s anti-corruption unit on June 27 in Lahore to explain his comments.
The middle-order batsman, who has represented Pakistan in 214 internationals, made the comments on Samaa TV about the alleged approach made to him during the last World Cup, as well as other offers to miss games against India.
“I was offered $200,000 in return for leaving two balls alone during the World Cup,” Akmal said in the TV interview. "It was our first match against India in the 2015 World Cup. In fact, every match I play against India, they offer me money to make some excuse and opt out of the game. But I have told those people that I am very sincere about playing for Pakistan and to not talk to me on this topic ever again."
It is still unclear whether Akmal had reported these alleged approaches earlier to the relevant anti-corruption authorities or not. If he has not, Akmal might be in hot waters as failure to report an approach is also a punishable offence under PCB and ICC rules.
In the past, Pakistan pacer Mohammad Irfan and spinner Mohammad Nawaz have faced punishments for failure to report the approaches. Irfan was barred from playing all forms of cricket for a year – with six months suspended – after he pleaded guilty to failing to report two corrupt approaches made to him. On the other hand, the left-arm orthodox spinner Nawaz was banned for two months for his failure to disclose the full details of an approach to corrupt the game in the aftermath of corruption scandal that hit the 2017 season of Pakistan Super League, in which Shareel Khan and Khalid Lateef were banned for five-years each for spot-fixing.
Akmal has been involved in a number of controversies in the past one year. In May last year, he was sent home from England ahead of Champions Trophy for failing two consecutive fitness tests in as many days. Three months later, he was banned for three games and fined PKR 1 million for his public outburst against national team coach Mickey Arthur.
Akmal last represented Pakistan against Australia in ODIs in their 2016-17 tour Down Under.