Court suspends Pakistan ICL ban

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Players free for domestic cricket return

PAKISTANI players contracted to the rebel Indian Cricket League can return to their home country to play domestic cricket after a ban imposed by the Pakistan Cricket Board was temporarily suspended.

The lifting of the ban, coming courtesy of a Pakistani court order, will come as a huge boost for a selection of the players who have challenged the ban since it was imposed by the PCB in 2007.

A total of 20 Pakistani players play in the ICL, all of whom were told they had no future in Pakistan cricket unless they left the rebel league.

The players, including star batsman Mohammad Yousuf, can now apply their trade in domestic leagues across the country.

The ICL players challenged the ban in the provincial Sindh high court last month. Their lawyer Zahid Fakhruddin Ibrahim said justice had been done.

“Judge Amir Hani Muslim has suspended the PCB ban imposed on the ICL players and they are now free to play,” Ibrahim told AFP.

But he said the ban did not extend to internationals adding only the PCB could clear the way for the players to be considered for international duty.

Moin Khan, a former Pakistan captain and coach in the ICL, said the suspension of the ban was good for Pakistani cricket.

“Some of the ICL players can still play for Pakistan and when they play in domestic cricket, youngsters will learn from them,” Khan told AFP.

“The ban had hurt the players financially as well as cricket-wise, so it’s a great decision,” he said.

Last month Mohammad Yousuf called on the PCB to rethink their policy on the ban.

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