Mohammad Amir set to return to first-class cricket after early end to spot-fixing ban
Last Updated: 29/01/15 8:11am
Mohammad Amir, the convicted spot-fixer, has been cleared to play domestic cricket in Pakistan.
Amir will make an early return to domestic cricket in Pakistan after a rule change made by the International Cricket Council.
Amir, 22, was jailed and banned from the sport for five years for his part in a spot-fixing scandal during his country's 2010 tour of England.
The talented seam bowler, who delivered pre-arranged no-balls at Lord's as part of a plot involving Mohammad Asif and their captain Salman Butt, was not due to play again until September 5.
But after a meeting of the ICC Board in Dubai it has been announced that cricket's governing body, the Pakistan Cricket Board, and anti-corruption chief Sir Ronnie Flanagan had approved his domestic availability with immediate effect.
An ICC statement read: "The ACSU [Anti-Corruption and Security Unit] chairman, Sir Ronnie Flanagan, with the prior approval of the ICC Board and the Pakistan Cricket Board, has exercised his discretion to allow Mohammad Amir to return to domestic cricket played under the auspices of the Pakistan Cricket Board with immediate effect.
"Amir's five-year ban is scheduled to expire on 2 September 2015. The ACSU chairman had exercised the powers vested in him under Article 6.8 of the ICC Anti-Corruption Code after he was satisfied that Amir had cooperated with the ACSU by fully disclosing his part in the matters that led to his disqualification, admitting his guilt, showing remorse and cooperating with the unit's ongoing investigations and by recording messages for the ACSU education sessions."
In the aftermath of the spot-fixing scandal, Amir distinguished himself from his co-conspirators by admitting his guilt and showing remorse.
Asif and Butt repeatedly fought charges before being found guilty at Southwark Crown Court. The latter pair were also jailed, with Asif banned from cricket for seven years (two suspended) and Butt 10 years (five suspended).
The change will mean Amir will be able work on his form ahead of England’s full tour to the UAE to play Pakistan in nine matches later this year: three Tests, five one-day internationals and a Twenty20 match.
Amir hit centre stage for Pakistan in 2009 when he made his international and Test debut as a 17-year-old, continued his stellar start by being named man of the series against in England in 2010 with 19 wickets and also became the youngest bowler ever to take 50 Test wickets.