Controversial Pakistani cricketer Umar Akmal has left the country to play league cricket in the United States. Akmal had recently completed its ban for violating PCB’s anti-corruption code.
Espncricinfo reported that the 31-year-old has signed a short-term contract with the Northern Cricket California Association and is ready to explore a long-term future that will sever his ties with Pakistani cricket. He scored 0, 14, 7, 16 and 29 for the Central Punjab Second XI in the PCB Cricket Associations T20 tournament before deciding to go to California.
The Quaid-E-Azam Trophy is set to debut on October 20, and it is not clear whether he will return to play in the country’s first domestic competition. The website claimed that Akmal’s return had not been well received on the circuit and that he had not been selected for the current T20 National Cup.
“There are a few others who have been banned with larger charges but have received unprecedented support to make their comeback. The system was never fair to Umar. Blatant compromises were made to select a few less fit players, but the benchmark was tightened up for him to make sure he was kept out, ”a family member said.
Akmal has been the center of controversy several times during his career, but he was granted an 18-month suspension for violating PCB’s anti-corruption policy. The suspension was later reduced to six months following the verdict of the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS).
Akmal was suspended hours before his PSL team, Quetta Gladiators, faced Islamabad in the opening game of the 2020 edition. The PCB indicted him for two breaches of Article 2.4.4 of its anti- corruption in two unrelated incidents in February this year before the PSL. Akmal is the younger brother of former Pakistani wicket beater Kamran Akmal, who performed 53 Tests, 58 T20, 157 ODI and cousin of current captain Babar Azam.
Akmal, who last played for Pakistan in October, competed in 16 tests, 121 ODIs and 84 T20s, scoring 1,003, 3,194 and 1,690 points respectively. Akmal, who has promised a lot after making a hundred in New Zealand on his test debut, has failed to live up to the high expectations that came with great performances early in his career.