ECB seek Mohammed Amir explanation

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The Independent Online

The England and Wales Cricket Board have asked the Surrey Cricket Board to assist with their investigation into banned Pakistan bowler Mohammed Amir's appearance for a village side.

The 19-year-old paceman was suspended for five years by the International Cricket Council in February after being found guilty of deliberately bowling no balls in the spot-fixing scandal against England last year.

His ban states Amir must not take part in any cricket-related activity but he confirmed on Wednesday that he had played for Addington 1743 on Saturday in the Surrey Cricket League, with the club website stating that he took four wickets in seven overs and made 60 runs against St Luke's

Amir insisted that he had checked with the club if the match fell under the auspices of the ECB, but was told that it was a friendly.

He told "I was informed by club representatives before the game that it was a friendly match, being played on a privately-owned cricket ground.

"I asked the club representatives if the match fell under the jurisdiction of the ECB and they informed me that the match did not.

"I spoke to several club representatives about the issue and they all told me that it was a friendly match and therefore would not contravene my ban from the ICC. I was informed that I was fine to play."

The ICC immediately launched an investigation into the reports with the ECB following suit, and the latter have now asked the Surrey Cricket Board to help them look into the matter.

An ECB statement said: "The ECB today announced that it has requested the Surrey Cricket Board to assist it in its investigation of the circumstances surrounding the Pakistan cricketer Mohammed Amir's appearance for Addington 1743 CC in a Surrey Cricket League Division One match last weekend.

"ECB has also written separately to Addington 1743 CC seeking a full written explanation from the club of the events leading up to Amir's appearance in the match.

"The decision came after ECB confirmed Addington 1743 CC falls under its regulatory jurisdiction by virtue of the club being affiliated to the Surrey Cricket Board. The ECB will also continue to assist the ICC with its own inquiry into the matter."

Pakistan captain Salman Butt and seamer Mohammad Asif were banned along with Amir over the spot-fixing scandal, receiving bans of 10 and seven years respectively.

The trio, along with a fourth man Mazhar Majeed, are due to face trial at Southwark Crown Court in October accused of cheating and conspiracy to obtain and accept corrupt payments. They deny the charges.