Like most cricket fans when the Pakistani players were alleged to be involved in spot fixing the only thing that once my mind wasn’t ‘I hope it’s not true’ as deep down we all thought it was but in fact ‘Please not Mohammad Amir’. Sadly though my hopes and those famously of Michael Holding on Sky Sports were to be dashed relatively quickly.
Having been a cricket lover all my life it pains me to see the sport brought into disrepute but what pains me more is to be the best young player I have ever seen coming through the ranks (Sachin and Warne whilst not before my time breakthrough when I didn’t have Sky so couldn’t fully appreciate them as young starlets) fall by the wayside and see his career gone before it ever really got started.
I recall that Australia tour down under where Pakistan to be blunt were a shambles at best and a joke at worse. They lost all three tests if I remember correctly but in two of them they gave the Aussies a real scare thanks to Amir and the bowlers suddenly getting their tails up. It happened over here to in the now infamous series where when the Pakistani bowlers go their tails up they caused the English batsmen all types of problems.
Yet I as type this the players that was the great hope of Pakistani cricket is sitting in a cell underneath the court waiting to be transported to prison to serve a six month sentence for deliberately bowling two no balls. His fellow fast bowler Mohammad Asif got a sentence of a full year whereas the captain has two and a half years to think about what he has done.
In some ways I think the sentences are harsh and yet on the other hand less so. I really don’t know how to feel about it apart from a sense of great loss that the world of cricket feels knowing that arguably the most important player of a generation is unlikely to see the field of play again. I know his ban will be up by the time he’s 23 but can Pakistani cricket bring him back into the fold? I’m really not sure.
He was the one that could have brought Pakistani cricket back and that nation is one of the most important amongst the test playing countries. Pakistani cricket will limp along but deep down all this case does is leave a horrible taste in the mouth. I couldn’t care less about the spot fixing per se which is wrong but honestly I couldn’t care. What I did care about was seeing Mohammad Amir lead Pakistan cricket back to the forefront of the sport. Instead all he’d lead in the next few months is an existence behind locked doors.
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