The banned Dhaka Gladiators owner Shihab Chowdhury said he wishes Mohammad Ashraful well as the cricketer’s five-year suspended ban for match-fixing is set to end on August 13 this year.
Ashraful was at the epicentre of the scandal in 2013 after he confessed to the International Cricket Council’s Anti-Corruption and Security Unit of his involvement in match-fixing for the Bangladesh Premier League franchise. His punishment will however, be over next month after he was pardoned the extra two years by producing “a certificate of good conduct from ICC”.
Shihab however, remains banned after he was also convicted of “fixing” during the BPL’s second edition. He is now serving the 10-year ban. He said yesterday Ashraful was saved by becoming a “witness” to the investigation.
“There is nothing personal between us. It is good for him that he has got the chance to come back having served the ban. What he did in the whole issue was only to save his career. He had become witness to the ICC and the BCB so that things can get easy for him. I wish him all the luck,” Shihab told Dhaka Tribune.
Shihab said he does not blame Ashraful for the chaos but a few individuals who played key roles in the saga which ran for around two years.
“I don’t blame Ashraful but there were a few who had played key roles in this whole thing. What Ashraful had done was to save his career. I hope he makes a good return,” said Shihab.
Mosharraf Hossain Rubel and Mahbubul Alam Robin, who were found not guilty in the BPL tribunal regarding the same allegations, didn’t want to comment on Ashraful’s return when contacted by this correspondent.