By AYYAZ MALIK
In what has been one of the biggest ‘soap operas’ of 2015 thankfully, Pakistan cricketer Mohammed Amir has been recalled to the national side for the tour of New Zealand in the fifty over and T20 formats.
Amir, who famously was involved in the ‘spot-fixing scandal’ has been on the path to redemption ever since being allowed to resume his cricket career by the ICC.
The ICC had banned the left-armer for five years, but ever since that ban completed earlier in 2015, Mohammed Amir’s career has been blighted due to events ‘off the field’.
Twenty-three-year-old Amir’s reintegration back into the national side after a five-year absence hasn’t pleased everyone. Ex-players such as Ramiz Raja have been fiercely against the return of the former Pakistani bowler, Raja even got involved in a very heated TV debate with former Pakistani batsmen Mohammed Yusuf in regards to this issue.
Even current players such as Mohammed Hafeez and Azhar Ali have been very vocal with their opposition to the move of bringing back the bowler that many call the ‘next Wasim Akram’.
Their grievance (Ramiz Raja, Azhar Ali and Mohammed Hafeez) has been that a player who has damaged the nation doesn’t deserve to get a second chance.
Ali who is the captain of the Pakistan one-day team wanted to tender his resignation, which was swiftly rejected. In the case of these players and ex-player, one understands their stance – they’re trying to uphold the spirit of the game.
This is understandable, but what’s not fair is the constant reminder Mohammed Amir gets that he made a mistake five years ago. He has ‘repented’ so many times, what else is Amir suppose to do?
Yes, he made a mistake – and yes he said he is sorry, that should be case closed surely. If certain people within the Pakistani cricket community want to worry about the ‘integrity of the game’ then I wish they would have been just as critical of other players who were banned for taking drugs.
Isn’t that cheating, isn’t that damaging the honor of the Country? We all make mistakes Mohammed Amir knows that. In Amir’s case, he is letting his cricket doing the talking, the 23-year old has been sensational on the pitch ever since he returned to first-class cricket.
Mohammed was brilliant in the last edition of the Bangladesh T20. His form in the Bangladesh version of the T20 lead the 23-year old to be included in the Pakistan Super League, where he will be appearing for Karachi kings.
I for one hope Amir’s inclusion will lead to a call-up in the world T20 squad. I genuinely believe the ability that Mohammed Amir has would make it a ‘crazy decision’ not to pick him.
If this boy plays a starring role in the world cup, which I am sure he will, then I am sure all this ‘spot-fixing scandal’ stuff will be all forgotten.