Before Pakistan paceman Muhammad Amir gears up for battle against Cook & Co. and bowls his first delivery at Lord’s on Thursday, he will have to exorcise a ghost from the past. It was at Lord’s in 2010 where Amir bowled those no-balls that saw him get banned for five years for spot-fixing. This will be Amir’s first Test match since that ban. While his case is very high-profile, there have been other instances where cricketers have made a comeback from fixing ban. Here’s a look at them…
Herschelle Gibbs and Henry Williams (SA)
The South Africans were banned for six months after found guilty of receiving £10,000 each for underperforming in an ODI match against India in 2000. The two didn’t just get away with a soft sentence, the ban was given in late August with retrospective effect, allowing them to become eligible from January 1. The decision received a lot of flak. Gibbs, however, made an immediate impact with two tons against India in the home series in 2001. While Williams disappeared soon, playing a few first-class games, Gibbs made 12 of his 14 Test tons after the comeback.
Ajay Jadeja (India)
With colleagues Mohammad Azharuddin and Ajay Sharma getting banned for life, former India international Jadeja was red-carded for five years following the fixing scandal that rocked Indian cricket in 2000. The Delhi High Court however, overturned the ban in January 2003, allowing him to play international and domestic cricket. By then though, India’s golden era had started and there was no space in the India team. Jadeja managed to play for various domestic teams --- Rajasthan, Jammu and Kashmir and Haryana, even mentoring them.
Marlon Samuels (West Indies)
The West Indian all-rounder was caught in the dock after it was revealed that he had passed information to a well-known bookie before a January 2007 ODI against India. The Nagpur police chased him. He was banned from 2008-2010. But since his return, he has become the batting mainstay for West Indies, helping the Caribbeans to two World T20 titles. He won man of the match awards in the World T20 finals of the 2012 and 2016 editions.
The Pakistan paceman was banned after he was found guilty for dealing with bookies during the 2000 scandal that rocked Pakistan cricket, leading to a life ban on Salim Malik and fines on the likes of Wasim Akram, Waqar Younis and Inzamam-ul Haq. He returned but could play only first-class cricket, mostly at a basic level representing second XIs of English county Derbyshire.
The 2013 IPL fixing scandal saw many Indian domestic players get banned. Goa offie Amit Yadav, Himachal’s Abhinav Bali, Madhya Pradesh’s Mohnish Mishra and Gujarat and Saurashtra bowler Siddharth Trivedi were banned for a year before they came back to represent their state sides.