Disgraced former Pakistan captain Salman Butt returned to the country on Friday night amid the hustle and bustle of a chaotic crowd at the airport and a cry of innocence from the 27-year-old.
Salman, who served seven months in prison after being found guilty of spot-fixing charges, continued to plead innocence but apologised for ‘not reporting the approach’ to the International Cricket Council (ICC). Salman, who is also serving a ban of at least five years imposed by the ICC, also dismissed the court’s verdict, saying he had ‘never asked anybody to do anything or bowl no-balls’.
“I apologised to the ICC for not reporting the approach,” said Salman. “I also apologise to the nation and those who supported me but I should clear that this apology is for not reporting the offer I was made. I never accepted any offer for fixing. The person who offered me was a known fellow to me and I just wanted to give him time and that stopped me from reporting the incident.”
The 27-year old added that he will reveal facts in the next few days.
“I never asked anybody to do anything or bowl no-balls. I am considering an appeal and will sit with my legal team over this.”
The left-handed batsman also expressed a desire to make a cricket comeback.
“All I want is to make a comeback as a good person, a good Pakistani and a good cricketer.”
PCB to discuss Salman’s rehab
While the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has arranged rehabilitation for Mohammad Amir, the board was yet to reach a decision on whether to help Salman.
“We’ll have to speak to the ICC regarding this,” said an official close to the PCB. “It also depends on whether he contacts us or not.”
The official, however, said the PCB was not too keen on assisting Salman like it did in Amir’s case.
Published In The Express Tribune, June 23rd, 2012.
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