Former Pakistan opener Khalid Latif has lost an appeal against a five-year ban for spot-fixing but had his one million rupee ($10,000) fine waived, the country’s cricket body said.
Adjudicator Justice Faqir Khokhar upheld the ban, saying there was “overwhelming” evidence against Latif, but waived the fine as his career was almost over, Pakistan cricket Board lawyer Taffazul Rizvi told reporters in Lahore.
Latif, who had shown tremendous early promise as a cricketer but failed to make an impact at international level, played five one-day internationals and 13 T20Is, the last of which was against the West Indies in Abu Dhabi in September 2016.
The scandal surfaced during the second edition of the Pakistan Super League in February last year when Latif was playing for Islamabad United.
Latif, 32, was charged with orchestrating a deal with a bookie that would see his fellow opener Sharjeel Khan deliberately playing two dot balls – deliveries off which no run is scored – in the opening match against Peshawar Zalmi in Dubai.
Spot-fixing involves determining the outcome of a specific part of a match rather than the overall result, and is therefore harder to detect than match-fixing.
Sharjeel was also banned for five years – two and a half years suspended – and his appeal was rejected last November.
Paceman Mohammad Irfan and spinner Mohammad Nawaz were banned for one year and two months respectively for not reporting fixing offers.
Another former opener Nasir Jamshed – alleged to have played a role as coordinator in the PSL fixing deal – was banned for one year for not cooperating with the inquiry.
The decision against another international player, Shahzaib Hasan, was reserved and will be announced on Saturday.
Pakistani cricket has long been tainted by allegations of spot-fixing.
The most infamous incident came on the 2010 tour of England, when then-captain Salman Butt and bowlers Mohammad Amir and Mohammad Asif were all given prison sentences for conspiring to bowl deliberate no-balls in the fourth Test at Lord’s.
27-year-old Abbas is expected to play for the majority of the 2018 season for the outfit bar late April to mid-June where he could be a part of Pakistan’s side for the tour of England.
33-year-old Sohail has been signed as cover and will fill in for Abbas for the remainder of the season should the latter be called up to the Pakistan squad.
Seamer Abbas has been Pakistan’s top domestic bowler for the past two years finishing as the highest wicket-taker in both of them. He has played five Tests for his country in his career so far picking up 23 wickets.
Sohail meanwhile has played nine Tests for Pakistan with his last appearance for his country coming in the historic T20I series against the ICC World XI in Lahore last year.
Leicestershire coach and former England international Paul Nixon was delighted with the addition of the two seamers for the upcoming season.
Speaking to the BBC, he said “We have been looking for a quality fast bowler as our overseas professional and Mohammad Abbas ticks all of the boxes.
“His Test match record is different class, he is the new kid on the block, and I am delighted to secure his signature.
“It was vital that we secured high-class cover. Sohail Khan has a superb record both in red and white-ball cricket.”
Pakistan all-rounder Shoaib Malik showed signs of delayed concussion after being hit on the head by the ball during Tuesday’s one-day international with New Zealand, the Pakistan cricket Board announced.
Malik, who was not wearing a helmet, was struck on the back of the head by a fielder’s throw as he returned to his crease after advancing down the pitch for an attempted single.
The 35-year-old was able to continue batting but faced only four more balls before being dismissed for six, and he did not come out to field when New Zealand batted.
Pakistan team physiotherapist Vib Singh said in a statement: “While trying to take a run Shoaib Malik was hit on his head with a wayward throw.
“Shoaib was assessed on field by match doctor and myself. He did not have any symptoms of a concussion and was able to carry on playing. After getting out he was reassessed and was showing delayed concussion signs. He is doing well and is resting.”
When asked about Malik’s health after the match, Pakistan coach Mickey Arthur told a press conference: “He’s concussed, he’s not great at the moment. I haven’t got the final report.”
Arthur also admitted Pakistan had felt the absence of the veteran all-rounder after slumping to a five-wicket defeat in Hamilton.
He added: “With Malik out, he gave us 10 overs of off-spin which was very, very needed for us out there. We could have taken pace off with a lot more overs.
“We always had Haris (Sohail) up our sleeve but Malik’s a genuinely good offspinner and a proper offspinner, with all due respect to Haris.
“So that’s disappointing because those overs would have been crucial for us tonight.”
Pakistan trail 4-0 in the five-match ODI series.
Provided by Press Association Sport