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Pakistan rules out Younus's return

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan's cricket chief ruled out on Tuesday the imminent return of former captain Younus Khan to the national team, after the player's lawyer complained that he had been left out of an England tour.

The player failed to make the selection for the tour after the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) refused to clear his name, despite an indefinite ban being overturned last month.

Ijaz Butt, said Younus and his lawyer Ahmed Qayyum had broken players' rules in a subsequent written appeal.

“Younus and his lawyer have given inappropriate statements. There is a players' code of conduct in place and we will not spare anyone who violates the code,” Butt told reporters after meeting federal sports minister Ijaz Jakhrani.

Indefinite ban

Younus, 32, was banned indefinitely from the team in March following an inquiry into problems during a tour of United Arab Emirates, New Zealand and Australia.

The inquiry committee, which probed Pakistan's dismal performances and disciplinary problems, recommended bans for Younus and another former captain, Mohammad Yousuf, over “infighting in the team”.

Five other players — Shoaib Malik, Rana Naved-ul-Hasan, Shahid Afridi, Kamran Akmal and Umar Akmal — were also banned and fined.

However, an arbitrator later lifted bans on Younus and Malik and halved the fines. Naved's appeal is still pending, while Yousuf did not appeal and retired from cricket in protest.

Butt also ruled out Yousuf's return to the team.

“Yousuf has announced his retirement, so he is also not available,” said Butt of the experienced batsman, who has reportedly hinted himself at a comeback in October this year.

No argument

Meanwhile, Younus told Pakistani media in England that he had no argument with the PCB.

“I am available to play for Pakistan whenever required,” Younus told a Pakistani television channel in England, where he had featured in the county season.

“I have no fight with the PCB nor can I think of it. I am a known player because of Pakistan and the PCB.

Younus has not played a Test match since the Lahore Test against Sri Lanka in March last year, a match cut short by terrorist attacks on the visiting team bus.

The Pakistan team is currently on tour in England where it is playing Australia in two Twenty20 matches followed by two Tests. It will also play four Tests, two T20s and five one-day matches against England. — AFP

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