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Saleem Malik’s life ban may again be reconsidered: Najam Sethi

Saleem Malik © AFP
Saleem Malik tried to hold a benefit match in Lahore recently © AFP

Karachi: Apr 30, 2014

Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) may again look into the life ban imposed on former captain Saleem Malik in the next few days, PCB chief Najam Sethi said.

Sethi said that he would meet Malik in the next few days as the former captain has claimed his ban has been lifted by a court order.

“He sent us some court documents which he says the lower court removed his ban in 2008. Our legal team is studying them. I have told him we are ready to review his case if the situation has changed,” Sethi said.

Malik’s ban was highlighted recently when he first launched a welfare/benevolent fund for former players/umpires and officials and then tried to hold a benefit match at Gaddafi stadium in Lahore for former Test pacer Ehtshamuddin.

The board, after initially giving permission for the match which was to feature some top players, withdrew it at the last moment.

Sethi conceded he had initially signed a letter permitting the match to be organised.

“I sign a lot of papers everyday and I signed this one as well but later on when I was told about the ban on Malik the situation changed. Unfortunately, Malik’s name is on the letterhead of the welfare association and even on the match invitation card.

“We would have allowed the match without Malik’s participation in it but it was too late,” Sethi explained.

Malik, 51, played 103 Tests and 283 One-Day Internationals (ODIs)  and he was banned for life in 2000 after a 18-month long judicial inquiry headed by judge Malik Qayyum into match fixing allegations against Pakistani players.

The commission found Malik guilty of match fixing and recommended life ban but he kept on proclaiming his innocence and after a seven year battle in courts, he said in 2008 that the sessions courts accepted his appeal against the ban on the orders of the Supreme Court.

“I have just wanted that the Board listen to me and read the court orders. I am no longer banned and I want this stigma removed from my name even though the damage has been done to my life and family,” Malik told PTI.

Sethi said he had asked for opinion of the International Cricket Council (ICC) on the issue.

“We are willing to review his case as he has served Pakistan cricket but so far we have obeyed recommendations of the Qayyum commission,” he said.

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