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ICC bans Shakib in anti-corruption case

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India, B’desh to play first day-night Test in Kolkata

Bangladesh’s Shakib Al Hasan bowls against Zimbabwe during the Tri-Nation One-Day International cricket series in Dhaka, Bangladesh on Jan 23. (AP)

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates, Oct 29, (Agencies): Bangladesh captain Shakib Al Hasan was banned from cricket for one year on Tuesday for breaching the anti-corruption code. The International Cricket Council said Shakib admitted to three charges of failing to disclose full details of approaches or invitations he received to engage in corrupt conduct in January 2018 during the tri-series between Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Zimbabwe, and during the 2018 Indian Premier League.

Shakib, the Test and Twenty20 captain, also agreed to the sanction in lieu of a hearing.

The ICC said Shakib could avoid another year of suspension if he doesn’t commit any further offence before he is free to resume international cricket from Oct 29, 2020. That date rules him out of the T20 World Cup, which starts on Oct 18 in Australia.

“I am extremely sad to have been banned from the game I love, but I completely accept my sanction for not reporting the approaches,” Shakib said in an ICC media release.

“The ICC ACU is reliant on players to play a central part in the fight against corruption and I didn’t do my duty in this instance.”

Alex Marshall, the ICC general manager integrity, said Shakib had attended many education sessions and knew his obligations under the code.

“Shakib has accepted his errors and cooperated fully with the investigation,” Marshall said. “He has offered to assist the integrity unit in future education, to help younger players to learn from his mistakes. I am happy to accept this offer.”

Meanwhile, India will take on Bangladesh in both nations’ first ever day-night Test match, to be played at Eden Gardens in Kolkata from Nov 22 to 26 as the second game of a two-match series.

Newly appointed Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) President Sourav Ganguly, a long-time supporter of day-night Tests, first proposed the idea to home side captain Virat Kohli before speaking with Bangladesh Cricket Board officials.

“Day-night Test cricket is a huge step forward and we believe it will bring back the crowd into stadiums and a whole lot of young children to the sport,” Ganguly said in a statement on Tuesday.

Bangladesh will be without their all-rounder captain Shakib Al Hasan, who was banned from all cricket for at least a year on Tuesday after he was found to have breached the International Cricket Council’s Anti-Corruption code.

Ganguly said the match would help support Test cricket, the longest format of the game, which has seen dwindling audiences in recent years.

“Test cricket is of utmost priority, and we at BCCI will leave no stone un-turned to bring this format back to its feet,” the former India captain said.

India, Bangladesh, Afghanistan and Ireland are the only teams among the 12 Test-playing nations to have not yet played day-night Tests.

One of the major concerns for Bangladesh will be the lack of match practice with the pink balls used in day-night games, having only played one first class match with them in the country in February 2013.

“We’re really looking forward to the challenge,” Bangladesh head coach Russell Domingo told reporters. “We’re not going to have a lot of time to prepare with the pink ball, but it’s the same for India.”

The tour also includes three Twenty20 internationals, with the first match to be held in Delhi on Sunday.

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