Mohammad Aamer attends counselling session

Aamer returned home in February after completing a six months jail term but is still serving his ban Getty Images

Lahore: June 17, 2012

Pakistan’s disgraced pace bowler Mohammad Aamer had his first one on one counseling session with a sports psychologist, hired by the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) to help reform the teen-aged player.

“It was a very good session and the most positive aspect is that Aamer himself realises his mistakes and wants to redeem himself,” Dr. Maqbool Babri on Tuesday.

The PCB has hired Babri who is also a hypnotherapist to hold counseling sessions with not only Aamer but other players who have had disciplinary and attitude problems in recent years.

“Babri will not only work with Aamer but also some other players who we feel can serve Pakistan cricket well in the future but need to change their attitude and discipline themselves,” chief operating officer Subhan Ahmed said.

But Ahmed admitted that Babri’s main focus will be on Aamer.

“Aamer is serving a five-year ban from the ICC and under anti-corruption regulations he has to undergo a reformation program. The Board feels that counseling sessions with a sports psychologist will help him a lot,” the COO added.

Aamer was first suspended in September, 2010 alongwith teammates, Salman Butt and Mohammad Asif for their role in spot fixing on Pakistan’s tour to England in the year.

In February 2011 the anti-corruption tribunal of the ICC banned the trio for a minimum of five years after finding them guilty of spot-fixing while they were also given different jail terms last year in October by a crown court.

Aamer returned home in February after completing a six months jail term but is still serving his ban.

There have been clear indications that the PCB is keen that he returns to international cricket in the next two years and sources said that the counseling sessions are part of a program to help Aamer when he decides to appeal to the ICC to reduce his ban on humanitarian grounds.

“The board realises it is important for Aamer to undergo his rehabilitation program before he decides to approach the ICC,” one source said.

Babri said he had focused on making Aamer go through all his past events that led to his ban and jail term.

“It was a good two hours session and he is responding which is good,” Babri said. (PTI)