BCCI Ombudsman Justice DK Jain on Tuesday diluted the life ban imposed on cricketer S Sreesanth to seven years. The development means that the cricketer, who is serving a life ban owing alleged role in the IPL spot-fixing scandal, will now be eligible to play all forms of cricket from 13th September 2020.
DK Jain while announcing his decision on the same highlighted the fact that Sreesanth co-operated with the inquiry and the offense did not plague the IPL’s commercial value. “In the report of the Commissioner there is no allegation that Mr. Sreesanth did not co-operate in the Inquiry. Additionally, the BCCI has not been able to controvert the specific plea of Mr. Sreesanth that the offences allegedly committed by him did not substantially damage the commercial value of the IPL matches, or even the final result of the subject match,” the Omudsman says.
Moreover, lack of evidence against the cricketer also motivated the ombudsman to reconsider the ban imposed on the veteran. “Although the BCCI has referred to his erratic behaviour, both on and off the field, with fellow players, but nothing has been brought on record by the BCCI to show that any sanction was imposed on him in the past. On the contrary, he was regularly participating in the national and international matches,” the order says.
The order might have come as a relief for Sreesanth, however, his best cricketing years are already history – mentions the order. “Even other wise, 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. Bearing in mind, all these factors, 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. 22. It is ordered accordingly,” the order concludes.