Monday, February 7, 2011

Pakistan vs Corruption - Only Half the Job Done

And so the verdict finally comes out.
  • Salman Butt - 10 years 
  •  Mohammad Asif - 7 years 
  •  Mohammad Amir -  5 years
This includes all cricket, domestic or international. If all the bans were carried out in their entirety, it means that Butt and Asif will probably never return to international cricket (they will be 36 and 35 years old respectively). Only Amir, who will be 23 will be back.

The bans are crucially important to Pakistani and world cricket. They are a symbol of the state of corruption in Pakistan, and the level of tolerance from the ICC. But here is the kicker, the bans are only as good as long as they are actually enforced. 

In Pakistan, ban's seem to disappear like magic and disgusting on-field acts result in a slap on the wrists.

Taking the slang 'cherry' a bit too far.

If this trio end up back on the field before their allotted time, the symbols are crushed. It basically tells us that Pakistan does not take cricketing corruption seriously, and neither does the ICC.

This is what worries me, from the article we see the following:
"...which means that the trio cannot play any official, sanctioned cricket, international or domestic, for a minimum of five years...". Hold on, a minimum of five years?. What happened to the original numbers? 

"The suspended sentences on Butt and Asif have been made conditional on their making no further breaches of the code and participating in an anti-corruption education programme...". So let me get this straight, as long as they make no further breaches, during five years of not playing the game at all, and turning up to a few night classes reminding them that "corruption is bad, naughty boys", their bans will be reduced to that minimum of five?

"It must also be noted that not until the full judgement is released will the picture become fully clear..." In other words, what you just read could be utter tripe.

"Amir will appeal against the decision..." What on earth can the man possibly appeal on? He has no excuse, no refuting evidence, and the lightest of the three bans. He's lucky he even has a cricketing future.

"Now, in theory, the 26-year-old Butt could return after five years...". I give up.

In terms of dealing with corruption, this is the big one, the pinnacle. The evidence indisputable, and the the excuses nil. If this situation gets molly coddled like the rest, then cricket is in serious trouble.

Reading between the lines in the article above, I think we know where this is heading.


  1. Interesting huh. Great role models.

    I can only see this turning out badly for Pakistan and the ICC, their reputations aren't good as it is, and decisions they are making don't seem to be set in concrete, another judicial system that is too weak to uphold their responsibilities.

    What would the outcome have been if it was a New Zealand, English or Australian player? Jesse Ryder put a fist through a window and lost half the countries support.

    And how can Amir appeal the decision? He was found guilty, if he claims he is not then who is? He messed up, knowing full well what the consequences were, and now he should (whether he will or not depends on how good his lawyer is) accept them.

  2. You're right actually. The Western counties are generally very quick to punish their own and do not tolerate breaking the cricketing law (look at where Symonds is now).

    In both India and Pakistan the punishments are usually too light, and thats only what comes through in the media. Behind the curtains anything could be happening.