“Spot-fixing begins from club cricket. The Ramadan tournaments are central to such activities. The PCB needs to work at the micro-level to eradicate it.”
Former paceman Shoaib Akhtar termed a year ban on Mohammad Irfan to be lenient and said that the 34-year-old should consider himself lucky because of the short duration of the punishment.
The Pakistan Cricket Board suspended Irfan’s central contract and fined him $10,000 on Wednesday for his failure to report approaches by bookmakers linked to spot-fixing.
The fast-bowler admitted that he had been invited to indulge in the crime twice, but he could not report them to the cricket board’s anti-corruption unit because of the distress due to his parents’ death, one after another in a year.
“What really concerns me is that he had been approached twice but he did not inform once,” Akhtar said in a Television talk show in the late hours of Wednesday.
“He [Irfan] should consider himself lucky for being banned for just a year after this. This is a very lenient punishment.”
Akhtar went on to add that spot-fixing is deeply rooted in Pakistan’s domestic circuit. “Spot-fixing begins from the club cricket. The Ramadan tournaments are central to such activities. The PCB needs to work at the micro-level to eradicate it.”
When asked about the future of the other individuals involved in the Pakistan Super League (PSL) spot-fixing controversy, Akhtar said that the law should be same for everyone while mentioning Mohammad Amir, who was fast-tracked to the international cricket by the PCB despite being adjudged guilty in a spot-fixing scandal for bowling no-balls in 2010.
“The law should be same for everyone. It should not treat Mohammad Amir different from Salman Butt or anyother individual. Those who are talking about life bans on these cricketers must know that these are just allegations for now.”