Salman Butt, the banned former Pakistan captain, has publicly admitted to his part in spot-fixing for the first time and issued an apology. He has also indicated his willingness to participate in PCB and ICC rehabilitation programmes and said he still retains ambitions of returning to international cricket. Butt was given a five-year ban, with another five suspended, from all cricket by the ICC for his part in a scam during the Lord’s Test in August 2010. He also served time in prison in England.
In April, Butt and his former team-mate Mohammad Asif lost their appeals to the Court of Arbitration for Sport for the suspensions to be reduced and Dave Richardson, the ICC’s chief executive, called on them to admit their wrongdoing and cooperate with the ICC’s anti-corruption and security unit (ACSU). “I admit the decision of the ICC tribunal,” Butt said in a brief statement to the media in Lahore. “I said it before and am saying again, that to all those who have been disappointed by my actions I do apologies for them. Also, the [negative] effect it had on cricket’s integrity, I would like to apologies for that.
Salman Butt apologises to nation about spot-fixing
I want to insist, to all those playing and wanting to play cricket, they must stay away from such wrongdoings because it negatively effects them and the game of cricket.” Butt also made another request for a softening of his ICC ban, so that he could play domestic cricket before a possible return for Pakistan. Zaka Asraf, the currently suspended PCB chairman, had previously indicated that there could be a route back for Butt and Asif, once their suspensions had been lifted. “I want to give my availability for any PCB rehab programme and from the ICC,” Butt said. “Since I have only two years left of my ban, I request the ICC to allows me to play in domestic cricket. So by the time my ban ends, I can be available for national selection.