Karachi, Feb 6 (ANI): Former Pakistan cricketers have said the bans imposed by the International Cricket Council on Salman Butt, Mohammad Asif and Mohammad Aamir over spot-fixing charges will damage Pakistan cricket.
The tribunal imposed a 'sanction of ten years ineligibility' on Butt, "five years of which are suspended on condition that he commits no further breach of the code and that he participates under the auspices of the Pakistan Cricket Board in a programme of Anti-Corruption education."
On Asif, a sanction of seven years ineligibility has been imposed, two years of which are suspended "on condition that he commits no further breach of the code and that he participates under the auspices of the Pakistan Cricket Board in a programme of Anti-Corruption education," whereas the tribunal imposed a "sanction of five years of ineligibility" on Amir, the youngest of the three accused.
Former Pakistan captain Wasim Akram admitted that the lengthy bans handed out to the trio represented a new low for Pakistan cricket.
"I feel sad for all three of these kids, two just over 20 and one just 18. I feel for their families because they are key players. This is a low for Pakistan cricket," the Daily Times quoted Akram, as telling a news agency.
Former Pakistan spinner Iqbal Qasim, who is also the head of the National Bank team for which all three featured in domestic matches, termed the tribunal's decision as "upsetting".
"All three players were the future of Pakistan cricket, so it's a very upsetting day," he said.
"I hope these punishments will help future cricketers be more responsible. I think it should also serve as a jolt for the PCB who should have curbed this before it happened," he added.
Former pacer Sarfraz Nawaz termed the decision as "pre-judged".
"The ICC had decided to give punishments to the players because there was too much pressure on them to curb fixing," he said, adding, "It's an important day for world cricket and very sad for Pakistan."
Nawaz said both Aamir and Asif would be sorely missed in the forthcoming World Cup.
"Aamir and Asif are a huge loss. They are the world's best opening bowlers and will be missed, while Butt has matured into a solid opener," he said. (ANI)