BCCI Ombudsman Justice (retd) DK Jain has ordered to reduce the life ban on tainted Indian fast bowler S Sreesanth to seven years. The announcement comes five months after the Supreme of Court of India ‘set aside’ the BCCI ban, asking the board to ‘reconsider’ a fresh ban in three months.
Post the 2013 IPL, the BCCI had imposed a lifetime ban on Sreesanth and his Rajasthan Royals teammates Ankeet Chavan and Ajit Chandila. The Kerala pacer allegedly indulged in spot-fixing, conceding 14 runs in an over against the Kings XI Punjab. However, Sreesanth dismissed the claims as false and continued to vouch for his innocence.
New lease of life
In a new order passed on August 7, Jain said that the fast bowler has already served six years. He will now face only one more year of the ban imposed retrospectively in September 2013.
“… 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.
“…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,” he concluded.
In February, the BCCI told the Supreme Court that the ban was “fully sustainable in law” as he “tried to influence” a match. A few months later, a bench comprising of Justices Ashok Bhushan and KM Joseph said that Justice Jain would reconsider the duration of the punishment.
Sreesanth’s lawyers countered the claims, saying there was no evidence to prove them. Senior advocate Parag Tripathi, on behalf of the BCCI, said the recorded telephonic conversations made it clear that there was a demand of money and Sreesanth probably received it as well.