Players cleared by ICC can be picked for World Cup: PCB

<img border='0' align='left' title=' ' src='' class='caption'> PCB chairman Ijaz Butt has said that if any of the three suspended players are cleared by the ICC, they would be included in the World Cup squad.

Updated: January 17, 2011 16:06 IST
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Pakistan Cricket Board chairman Ijaz Butt on Monday said if any of the three suspended players are cleared of spot-fixing charges they can be included in Pakistan's World Cup squad.

The International Cricket Council anti-corruption tribunal is due to announce its verdict on the charges filed against Salman Butt, Mohammad Asif and Mohammad Amir on February 5.

The Pakistani selectors will announce the final 15-member World Cup squad on January 19.

"The squad is to be announced on January 19 but if any of these players gets a clean chit on February 5 he can be considered for late inclusion in the World Cup squad," Butt told reporters during a visit to Larkana where the PCB is constructing a new stadium in the name of late Benazir Bhutto.

"We have spoken to the ICC about this and they have in principle agreed to consider any late replacements in the final squad," Butt said.

Indications are that the PCB is keeping its fingers crossed that left arm pacer Amir might be cleared off the charges by the tribunal because of his young age (18) and the selectors are ready to include him in the squad even at a late stage.

But Butt made it clear that the final decision would be with the national selectors.

"They have to eventually decide because it is a fact these three have not played any cricket at all since September so that has to be taken into consideration," he said.

The PCB Chairman said that the board was taking various steps to convince the ICC special task team on Pakistan cricket to push for the revival of international cricket in Pakistan.

"At one stage last year their was a strong proposal to bring a world eleven team to Pakistan with players from all test playing and associate nations but the spot-fixing scandal spoilt everything and now there is no clear deadline when international cricket can resume in Pakistan," he said. 

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