Karachi: Pakistan has hired a psychologist to help in the rehabilitation of paceman Mohammad Amir who was convicted and banned in a spot-fixing scandal, an official said on Saturday. Amir, 20, Salman Butt and Mohammad Asif were sent to prison for their parts in a spot-fixing scandal and banned by the International Cricket Council (ICC) for a minimum of five years.
"We have hired Maqsood Babri to counsel Amir as part of his rehabilitation," Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) spokesman Nadeem Sarwar told AFP. "The sessions of counselling will start soon and in this regard we are in touch with the ICC also."
While banning the trio, the ICC anti-corruption tribunal led by Michael Beloff had advised the ICC and PCB to rehabilitate the three players. Amir recently appeared in a ICC anti-corruption educational video warning the future players of the pitfalls of spot-fixing. He was also debriefed twice by the PCB last month.
Babri said he will do his best to help Amir. "It's a challenge for me but I will do my best to counsel Amir so that he can find his way back to international cricket. Amir is an exceptional talent and we must help him regain his place," he said.
The trio along with their agent Mazhar Majeed were charged with accepting corrupt payments in return for bowling deliberate no-balls during the Lord's Test against England in August 2010. Amir was released in February this year after serving half of his six month sentence, while Asif was released two months later. Butt and Majeed were still completing their sentences of 30 and 32 months.
Amir rose to fame in 2009 and was regarded as the hottest property at international level before he was embroiled in the scandal. The ICC had to withdraw his name from the nomination for the year's best young player award because of the scandal.