Asif to appeal ICC ban

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Mohammad_Asif3 AP Mohammad Asif.

Karachi – Disgraced Pakistan paceman Mohammad Asif said Thursday he will pursue an appeal against a seven-year ban imposed on him by cricket's governing body over the 2010 spot-fixing scandal.

The 29-year-old was jailed by a London court in November last year after being found guilty of conspiring to cheat and conspiring to accept corrupt payments over no-balls bowled deliberately during the 2010 Lord's Test against England.

Teammates Salman Butt and Mohammad Amir have also been released after being sent to prison in the same case.

The International Cricket Council (ICC) banned the trio from playing all cricket for five years. Asif's seven year sanction includes a two-year suspended portion.

Asif said his appeal in the Switzerland-based Court of Arbitration for Sport (Cas) had been put on hold due to the criminal proceedings against him in England.

“I had filed the appeal when I was banned by the ICC (in February 2011) and now I have decided to pursue my appeal through my counsel Ravi Gill and hope that a date is given to me very soon,” Asif told AFP from London.

Once considered a fast-rising talent, Asif twice failed dope tests, in 2006 and 2008, the second during the inaugural Indian Premier League season which ended in a one-year ban.

He was also detained in Dubai for 19 days in June 2008 for possession of a banned drug.

Asif said he was practicing hard and played a club match in England on Monday, taking a hat-trick and winning the Man of the Match award, and was keen to resume his international career.

“I hope that I will get a fair result from the Cas and then hopefully able to revive my career,” said Asif, who has yet to return home since being released from prison in May.

“If I don't get an early date then I will return to Pakistan and whenever I get a date then I will go to Switzerland. It has been a tough period, without cricket and away from home but I am sure its going to be over soon,” said Asif.

Asif has taken 106 wickets in 23 Tests. His tally in 38 one-day internationals stood at 46. He also played 11 Twenty20s for Pakistan, taking 13 wickets. – Sapa-AFP

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