Bangladesh's Shakib Al Hasan during the Cricket World Cup (Photo by Paul ELLIS / AFP)
Bangladesh's Shakib Al Hasan during the Cricket World Cup (Photo by Paul ELLIS / AFP)

World’s No.1 cricketer banned for two years

World No.1 ODI all-rounder Shakib Al Hasan has been suspended by the International Cricket Council after failing to report "corrupt approaches" in 2018.

The 32-year-old was handed a two-year ban from cricket, with one year suspended, after he failed to inform authorities about being approached by a bookmaker on multiple occasions in 2018.

The ban effectively rules out Shakib from next year's ICC World Twenty20, which will be held from October 8 to November 15 in Australia.

Former England captain and Fox Cricket commentator Michael Vaughn had no sympathy for Al Hasan, tweeting the Bangladesh captain's punishment was not sufficient.

"No sympathy whatsoever for Shakib Al Hasan, none whatsoever," said Vaughan.

"In this era the players get briefed all the time about what they can and can't do and what they have to report straightaway. Two years isn't enough. It should have been longer."

With 3862 Test runs and 210 wickets in 56 matches, Al Hasan is Bangladesh's third-highest run-scorer and highest wicket-taker. He is currently sitting at No.3 in the Test allrounder rankings and at No.1 in the ODI allrounder rankings.

Al Hasan was named in the 2019 Cricket World Cup Team of the Tournament after scoring 606 runs at an imposing average of 86.57, including seven 50+ scores in eight innings. He is the first player to score 500+ runs and claim 10+ wickets during an ICC tournament.

Al Hasan accepted the ban, admitting his mistake was damaging for the fight against corruption in cricket.

"I am obviously extremely sad to have been banned from the game I love, but I completely accept my sanction for not reporting the approaches," said al Hasan.

"The ICC ACU is reliant on players to play a central part in the fight against corruption and I didn't do my duty in this instance.

"Like the majority of players and fans around the world, I want cricket to be a corruption free sport and I am looking forward to working with the ICC ACU team to support their education programme and ensure young players don't make the same mistake I did."

The turmoil over Shakib came just days before Bangladesh were to embark on their first-ever full-pledged bilateral series in India featuring three Twenty20 internationals and two Tests.

Shakib was expected to lead the team in both series.

ICC General Manager for Integrity Al Marshall suggested Al Hasan was well-informed about the consequences of neglecting to report corruption.

"Shakib Al Hasan is a highly-experienced international cricketer," said Marshall.

"He has attended many education sessions and knows his obligations under the Code. He should have reported each of these approaches."



- with wires