Umar Akmal‘s one-match suspension has been put on hold, which means he will be available to play the T20 against New Zealand in Auckland on Friday. The decision was made after the player appealed against the suspension; the PCB confirmed to ESPNcricinfo that his penalty stands suspended till his appeal is decided upon by a tribunal.
Umar was handed the one-match suspension last week for a clothing breach in Pakistan’s domestic first-class tournament, the Quaid-e-Azam Trophy. He had been reprimanded twice earlier for the same offence, before being given the ban, which was applicable to his very next game any official level of cricket – scheduled to be Friday’s T20. All through, Umar had pleaded not guilty to the charges.
“Umar has advised PCB that he wishes to appeal against the ban,” the PCB said. “Since Umar has opted to appeal against the decision, hence as per the PCB’s regulations, the penalty of one match will remain suspended until the decision of appellate tribunal.”
The PCB had found a flaw in procedure days after the team management was informed not to play him in the opening game of the New Zealand tour. It is understood that there is a procedure in place that requires a match referee to conduct a formal hearing in any case where the player pleads not guilty to the offence. However that procedure was not followed, with the match referee handing out the penalty and taking the signature of team manager without hearing out the player. He was officially found to have breached the PCB code of conduct for players, relating to “abuse of cricket equipment or clothing, ground equipment or fixtures and fittings during a match”.
Umar Farooq is ESPNcricinfo’s Pakistan correspondent. @kalson
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Source: ESPN Crickinfo