The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has finally decided to lift the life ban on the Indian cricketer S Sreesanth. The ban has now been reduced to seven years which will effectively end on September 13 2020. Sreesanth was accused of spot-fixing during the 2013 season of the Indian Premier League (IPL) while playing for the Rajasthan Royals (RR). But he was relieved of all the charges due to lack of evidence.
However, the BCCI had refused to lift the life ban on him which led to Sreesanth not being able to take part in any kind of cricket all these years. He contested the appeal in the higher courts time and again but to no avail. Rather, BCCI, on February 28, told the apex court that the life ban imposed on him was fully sustainable in law as he had tried to influence the match.
The cricketer’s lawyer though had countered the argument then stating that the spot-fixing didn’t place in the IPL match and there was no substantiated evidence against his client as well. In April this year, the bench of justices Ashok Bhushan and KM Joseph had said that the BCCI Ombudsman DK Jain would reconsider Sreesanth’s quantum of punishment within three months.
DK Jain, in an order passed on August 7, reduced the ban on S Sreesanth to seven years stating that the suspension would meet ends of justice. “…for Mr Sreesanth, who is now in his late thirties, his prime years as a Cricketer, particularly as a fast bowler may already be over,” Jain reasoned in his order according to the Times of India.
“… I am of the view that banning Mr. Sreesanth from participating in any kind of commercial Cricket or from associating with any activities of the BCCI or its affiliates, for a period of seven years with effect from 13.09.2013, i.e. the date from which, the period of ban imposed by the Disciplinary Committee had commenced, will meet the ends of justice,” Jain said in the order.
Sreesanth who will be 37-year-old by next year has one final chance to revive his cricketing career. Though it remains to be seen if he will be able to represent his domestic team Kerala.
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