KARACHI: Pakistan opening batsman Khalid Latif has been handed five-year ban with Rs one million fine in the Pakistan Super League spot-fixing case.
The right-handed opening batsman faced six charges including persuading other teammates – Mohammad Irfan and Sharjeel Khan – take part in spot-fixing during Pakistan Super League (PSL) second edition, held in Dubai earlier this year.
In February this year, Islamabad United batsmen Sharjeel Khan and Khalid Latif had been provisionally suspended under the PCB’s Anti-Corruption Code over alleged spot fixing.
The PCB had charged the duo for breaching various articles under Clause 2, for attempts to corrupt a game, and for failing to disclose suspect approaches. Both had challenged the charges and a tribunal was formed to hear their cases.
Latif was last issued a notice on April 17 by the PCB, asking him to appear for another interview before its Security and Vigilance Department. Latif had already been charged with serious breaches of the PCB’s anti-corruption code during the PSL in February, and was provisionally suspended for alleged misdemeanours and sent home from the tournament with immediate effect
He had made a comeback in the World T20 after four years out of the side. Since his debut in 2008, Latif has played five ODIs and 13 T20Is and his most recent appearance for Pakistan came in the T20 series against West Indies in September last year.
The PCB had already banned Sharjeel Khan for five years after finding him involved in spot-fixing on August 30 this year. However, with half of his sentence suspended, Khan would not be able to play domestic and international cricket for half the sentence and will be kept under observation for remaining duration.
On the flip side, Latif cannot return to cricket at least 2022 as none of his sentence was suspended. The tribunal decision against the right-handed opener is being deemed as the harshest punishment so far in the PSL spot-fixing saga.
What are the charges against Latif?
The specific articles both cricketers (Latif and Sharjeel) alleged to have violated are: 2.1.1, 2.1.2, 2.1.3, 2.4.4 and 2.4.5. In addition, Latif is alleged to have breached 2.1.4.
Both players had denied some of the alleged breaches they were accused of but admitted to at least one of the more minor charges that was related to not reporting the corrupt approaches.
The charges are mainly centred on the opening game of the second season of the PSL, as well as activities around it, in Dubai. Islamabad United had registered a comfortable seven-wicket win, by the D/L method, over Peshawar Zalmi. Sharjeel was dismissed for 1 off four balls and Latif did not play the game. Both players were provisionally suspended by the PCB and were sent home with immediate effect.