PCB says Butt and Asif not in contention for Pakistan yet
The re-admission of Mohammad Amir having raised enough eyebrows, the PCB looks to be in no hurry to reinstate the other two accused of the infamous 2010 spot-fixing saga, Salman Butt, and Mohammad Asif, as Haroon Rasheed, Pakistan’s chief selector said that the two are still completing their rehabilitation process.
The two cricketers are touted to resume playing domestic cricket in the National One-day Championship from January 10 after the PCB granted them permission to do so for their team- the WAPDA- in the national tournament that begins in Karachi and Islamabad.
"I would say they will have to wait until the next season and appear in the first class tournament before we can decide whether their form, fitness, and attitude makes us consider them for national selection," said Rasheed on Geo Super channel.
Citing the case of Amir, Rasheed said that the left-arm pacer was called into the conditioning camp only after a full domestic season.
“In Aamir's case, the ICC allowed him to resume playing last April and first he played Grade-11 cricket, then in different T20 tournaments and finally in the Quaid-e-Azam Trophy and Bangladesh Premier League before we invited him for the national camp.”
“It was only after we were satisfied with his form, fitness and behavior in the camp that we decided to give him a second chance to play for the national team and picked him for the tour to New Zealand.”
The selector also said that the latest inductee into the Pakistan side had gone through proper rehabilitation program before being considered and said that it’s too early to consider the other two veterans.
"It is too early to consider Butt and Asif. They are still completing their rehab and we have to see how they perform. But they will have to wait I think until next season," he added.
After due deliberations, negotiations, and patronage, the PCB finally managed to overhaul the dissidents and successfully re-admit Amir into the National side when it announced the squad that would travel to New Zealand to play in the limited-overs fixtures.
However, the path isn’t a bed of roses for the aforementioned cricketer, as he still faces legal hurdles in terms of being granted a foreign visa, as the NZ immigration authority has reservations agianst those convicted for criminal offences.