PCB launches CAS appeal against Akmal’s reduced ban for anti-corruption breach

Cricket - First Test - England v Pakistan - Emirates Old Trafford, Manchester, Britain - August 7, 2020 Pakistan's Mohammad Rizwan in action, as play resumes behind closed doors following the outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) REUTERS/Lee Smith/Pool

(Reuters) – The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) on Monday said that it will appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) against the reduction of batsman Umar Akmal’s ban for an anti-corruption breach.

The middle-order batsman was banned in April for failing to report approaches to engage in corrupt practices ahead of this year’s Pakistan Super League Twenty20 competition.

An independent adjudicator last month reduced Akmal’s three-year ban to 18 months, saying Akmal’s confession that he failed to report match-fixing approaches on two occasions had left “no room for doubt as to the veracity of the charges”.

The PCB said the decision to file an appeal was made following a review of the independent adjudicator’s order, which said the ban was reduced “on grounds of taking a compassionate view”.

“The PCB doesn’t take any pride in seeing a cricketer of Umar’s stature being banned for corruption, but as a credible and respectable institution, we need to send out a loud and clear message to all our stakeholders that there will be no sympathy whatsoever for anyone who breaches the regulations,” the board said in a statement.

Akmal’s 18-month ban had been backdated to Feb. 20 when he was provisionally suspended and the 30-year-old will be eligible to play from August 2021.

He last played for Pakistan in a Twenty20 International against Sri Lanka in Lahore last year.

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