Kaneria wants open appeal against ECB life ban for fixing verdict

Updated: Jun 28, 2012, 16:41 PM IST

Karachi: Pakistan leg-spinner Danish Kaneria has called for an appeal against a life ban imposed on him by the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB), for a fair trial.

Kaneria was last week found guilty on two charges of corruption in relation to the Mervyn Westfield spot-fixing case, but denies any involvement, claiming that he has been made a scapegoat, reports a source.

Kaneria will face the end of his career in cricket if the ban is upheld. He is allowed a 14-day period to lodge an appeal after he receives the ECB`s final judgement.

"We`re going to have an appeal. What we want is an independent observer to sit in and listen to the evidence. What we want is a fair hearing in front of an independent panel," said Steven Hourigan, who represented Kaneria at the ECB tribunal.

The ECB disciplinary panel, in the written summary of their findings concluded that Westfield, despite inconsistencies in his evidence, ``was plainly telling the truth``.

Kaneria, who is Pakistan`s fourth-highest wicket-taker in Tests, has previously called the verdict against him ``unfair``, based on Westfield`s word against his, and Hourigan suggested that it was in the ECB`s interests to pin the blame on someone from outside the domestic game in England.

"It has been suggested that what the ECB wanted to do and needed to do was, in order to present English cricket as being clean, that this one incident of corruption was caused by a foreign player coming to the UK and corrupting a young, English player," he said.

"The fact Danish was an outsider and from Pakistan is easily believed and therefore he must be corrupt. If we had had a fair hearing, that wouldn`t have been the result," he added.

Kaneria maintained that the case against him was motivated by Westfield`s desire to minimise his own involvement in fixing.

"He wanted to reduce his sentence...he is ruining my career to reduce his sentence," Kaneria said.