— Quetta Gladiators to seek replacement
The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) on Thursday suspended batsman Umar Akmal under its anti-corruption code with immediate effect.
This suspension implies that Akmal cannot take part in any cricket-related activity until the PCB Anti-corruption Unit (ACU) is investigating the cricketer.
Akmal is being investigated under Article 4.7.1 of the PCB Anti-Corruption Code which suggests that before a participant is either charged by the ACU or “there are other exceptional circumstances relevant to a participant […] it shall have the discretion to provisionally suspend the participant pending the Anti-corruption Tribunal‟s determination of whether he/she has committed an offense.”
“As this is an ongoing investigation, the PCB will not make any further comments,” a press release announcing the board’s decision said.
The press release further said that Quetta Gladiators are “allowed to apply for Umar Akmal’s replacement in the HBL Pakistan Super League 2020.” The Gladiators — who won the title last year — are ready to face off against two-time winners Islamabad United today in the first match of this year’s installment on HBL PSL.
Akmal was also investigated by the PBC earlier this month for alleged misconduct. According to a report published by ESPNCricinfo, earlier this month, Akmal had exposed himself to a trainer during his fitness test out of frustration and asked him, “Where is the fat?”. The player’s brother, cricketer Kamran Akmal said that Umar had done it out of mischief.
The PCB, in a statement given to ESPNCricinfo said it was “fully aware of the matter and was looking into punishments in the context of bringing the game into disrepute”.
The cricket board in its inquiry heard all parties concerned and concluded that the incident happened due to a “misunderstanding”, a press release later issued by the board had said.