By: Mehdi Qazi
In 2009, fast bowler Muhammad Amir began his career with T20 cricket at the minor age of 17, and impressed the world with his bowling skills.
But in 2010 before he could grow any further, he was mired in a spot fixing controversy where he was convicted of having carried out specific on-field actions, including bowling no-balls at pre-determined times, during the test match against England on the instructions of a bookie, which ultimately led him for a five-year ban.
This year in September the ban ended— and big names and senior officials in cricket discussed if he should be given a chance to play for Pakistan or not.
This year Amir’s comeback remained a source of anxiety among several Pakistani team members. But Amir took a step forward and apologized for his mistake and slammed former captain Salman Butt and bookie Mazhar Majeed of tricking him into bowling deliberate no-balls in the 2010 Lord’s test against England.
He then joined Bangladesh Premier League and proved his mantle by performing the best of his career, which led Pakistan Cricket Board to seriously consider his options for return in the national Squad.
This caused a debate among fellow cricketer whether he should be allowed to play or not. The media report surfaced which claimed that Muhammad Hafeez refused to play BPL because he ‘could not play with Muhammad Amir who had tarnished the image of Pakistan due to his involvement in a match fixing scandal.’
Two days later, he joined BPL but played against Amir with Dhaka Dynamites.
Umar Gul was also at par with the junior player, he said in an interview, “I think it will be unfair if Mohammad Amir comes back and takes the place of a player who has been performing well. However, I don’t think Amir can just walk in and displace a player who has done well. The selectors will not simply drop a player to make a place for Amir.”
Whereas on the other hand Pakistan Coach Waqar Younis supported Muhammad Amir’s return to the international Cricket.
“We all have to move forward. I think Amir has served his sentence and has served his punishment and I honestly feel that he deserves a second chance.” Younis said in an interview to PakPassion.
Fast bowler Shoaib Akhtar also said that Muhammad Amir will be handy in World T20 schduled in India next year.
With this support, Muhammad Amir was given another hope for his return when Fast bowler was inducted in a fitness training camp for 26 players which also includes T20 captain Shahid Afridi.
Rameez Raja, cricket commentator and former captain, claims that if he was in a decision making power, he would have vouched for Amir. Legendary Fast bowler Wasim Akram also believed that Amir’s inclusion in national squad will strengthen the team.
Amir is proving every one wrong by his smashing performances. If he is able to counter his critics with his performances is something that is yet to be seen.
He is signed by Karachi Kings in Pakistan Super League which will start in February.
We hope year 2016 is better for Amir
Read #9: Mahira khan sweeps hearts with grace
*The above story is part of our of “10 most discussed personalities of the year” series. Mahira Khan made it to no. 9. Visit our website tomorrow to find out who is next.