In an unprecedented move, the Pakistan Cricket Board handed out life bans to top players Younis Khan and Mohammad Yousuf following an inquiry into the team's disastrous tour of Australia. The PCB also banned Shoaib Malik and Rana Naved for one year, along with a fine of two million, for breaking the team's code of conduct during the tour of Australia.
Twenty20 captain Shahid Afridi, Kamran Akmal and Umar Akmal have been given final warnings on disciplinary grounds and are all on a six-month probation period. Kamran was handed a fine of Rs three million and younger brother Umar was fined Rs two million.
Afridi was fined Rs three million for ball tampering during the one-day series against Australia.
The bans were handed down by an inquiry committee which comprised former players Wasim Bari, Zakir Khan and Yawar Saeed, besides Wazir Ali Khoja, a member of the PCB governing council, and Rizvi. The committee held hearings on February 12th, 13th and the 27th, and looked into reports from former coach Intikhab Alam, manager Abdul Raqeeb and newly appointed coach Waqar Younis, who was the bowling consultant during the Australia tour.
Besides the players who were punished, the committee questioned Intikhab, Raqeeb, opener Salman Butt, assistant coach Aaqib Javed, the physio Faisal Hayat and the PCB's cricket analyst Mohammad Talha.
Attention will turn now to how the players will respond. Legal action or appeals will be a consideration though Rizvi insisted the board was on solid ground.
Albeit the reasons behind banning two of the most experienced cricketers (Younis, Yousuf) are still not known, but the PCB said it would be making the inquiry committee's report public in few days.
Yousuf was under tremendous pressure and had to face flak from all quarters for one of the most shoddy performance by Pakistan during Australia tour in recent years.
Younis, who had earlier stepped down as the captain of the squad saying he was not able to control the team, was recalled into the team for the five one-day internationals against the Kangaroos but failed to click any of the matches.
This decision will definitely turn into big drama. Lets see where will this all end.