Afghanistan wicket-keeper batsman Shafiqullah Shafaq has been on Sunday (May 11) banned from all formats of cricket by the Afghanistan Cricket Board (ACB) for six years.
Shafaq was handed a six-year ban after the keeper accepted his involvement in corrupt activities during the Afghanistan Premier League (APL) T20 and Bangladesh Premier League (BPL).
The ACB said the 30-year-old had fixed or tried to fix matches in the inaugural edition of the APLT20 playing for Afghan club Nangarhar Leopards in 2018 and Sylhet Thunder in the last edition of the Bangladesh Premier League (BPL) 2019.
The board further said Shafaq accepted four charges relating to the breach of the ACB Anti-Corruption Code during both franchise T20 events in Afghanistan and Bangladesh.
The ACB said in a statement: “Shafaq was charged under breach of article 2.1.1 which is directly related to “fixing or contriving in any way or otherwise influencing improperly, or being a party to any agreement or effort to fix or contrive in any way” which also includes deliberate under-performance.”
It further reads: “The breach of article 2.1.3 relates to seeking, accepting, offering or agreeing to accept any bribe or other Reward to (a) fix or to contrive in any way or otherwise to influence improperly the result, progress, conduct or any other aspect of any Domestic Match.”
Meanwhile, the other two charges are related to failure to report a corrupt approach to the anti-corruption unit with the ACB release saying: “Under the provisions of the Code, Mr. Shafaq chose to admit the charges levied against him and agreed to the sanctions by ACB in lieu of an Anti-Corruption Tribunal hearing.”
Commenting on the first spot-fixing issue in Afghanistan cricket, ACB's Senior Anti-Corruption manager, Sayed Anwar Shah Quraishi said: “This is a very serious offense where a senior national player is involved in the corruption of a high-profile domestic game in APL T20 2018.”
Shah further added, “The player had also attempted but failed to get one of his teammates to engage in corruption in another high-profile game during the BPL 2019.”
However, the ACB said Shafaq, who has played 24 ODIs and 46 T20Is for Afghanistan so far with his last international appearance came against Bangladesh in a T20I last September, is willing to contribute to future integrity education programs to help younger players learn from his mistakes in the country.
(With PTI Inputs)