Malik wants second chance but PCB adamant

Saleem Malik

From our correspondent 

KARACHI: Former Pakistan’s captain Saleem Malik again is in headlines after requesting the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) that he deserves second chance after being backed by former Pakistan captain Inzamam-ul-Haq and Saqlain Mushtaq recently.

But the PCB, according to sources, is not willing to take his services due to certain pending inquiries against the former right-handed batsman.

“There were outstanding and serious questions with regard to his [Malik’s] integrity,” Tafazzul Rizvi, PCB legal attorney, told ESPNcricinfo. “He was given a transcript to clarify but he never returned even after repeated calls.”

These inquiries are linked to a sting operation in England conducted by Mazhar Mehmood, the journalist who broke the 2010 spot-fixing scandal that resulted in three Pakistani cricketers – Salman Butt, Mohammad Amir and Mohammad Asif – going to jail. The PCB had intended to open a file based on that information eight years ago and called upon Malik for clarification but he never responded. Although Malik had volunteered to clear his name when the PCB set up an integrity commission in the wake of the 2010 spot-fixing saga, he is yet to adhere to the summons based on the Mehmood sting.

Malik’s cricketing career was ultimately ended by the match-fixing scandals. In a judicial inquiry – that began in 1998 and continued for 13 months – he was found guilty of offering bribe to Australian cricketers Shane Warne and Mark Waugh to lose the 1994-95 Karachi Test. Malik was fined Rs 1 million and banned for life in 2000, but eight years later his sentence was overturned by a Lahore sessions court, allowing him theoretically to return to the fold.

Malik was also seen submitting applications for coaching jobs with the Board in the last but he was never considered.

In a video message released to media the 57-year old Malik requested the PCB to consider him for any coaching job, citing examples of recent cricketers who have made their way back into the system after completing their sentence.

“I see there are a lot of cricketers saying good things about my batting, fielding and captaincy,” Malik said. “Since 2008, when the honourable court lifted my ban, I had tried to get a coaching job but was never considered. In recent years, Mohammad Amir went on to play for Pakistan; Salman Butt, [Mohammad] Asif [are] playing domestic cricket [and] even Sharjeel Khan went on to play PSL. So I request the PCB, if I am of any use for them, please consider me. I wish I [will] be able to serve Pakistan in any shape whatever I can do in my capacity. Whatever skill I have, I can pass on it to youngsters.”

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