New Delhi: Pacer Mohammad Amir was on Friday included in Pakistan's squad for the limited-overs away series against New Zealand, leading a huge debate in the cricketing circles.
The left-arm bowler who fell from grace in 2010 after admitting to his role in a spot-fixing scandal, returned to the national side after a gap of give years.
The 23-year-old's inclusion for the team camp in Lahore led to a protest from senior players like Azhar Ali and Mohammad Hafeez.
However, the duo was later placated by PCB chairman.
Aamir last appeared for the national team in a Test against England at Lord's in August 2010 before the scandal came to the fore.
“I am sure fans will love me. But even if there are taunts and harsh remarks I am ready for that and will do my best to reply to them with love and by taking wickets. I have toured New Zealand before and know they love the game and they are so caring and loving, so I don't expect anything untoward from them. I am sure they will adore me,” said Amir with regards to his comeback.
Here is how members of Pakistan's cricketing fraternity reacted to the news of his return.
Ramiz Raja: I am not surprised once the cricket board had taken a policy decision to give Amir a second chance. But we have to see how he performs because there will be lot of pressure on him and everything he does will be scrutinized. We have to see what is his form is in international cricket.
Waqar Younis: I am very excited over his comeback. Amir is on the right path and has worked really hard in the fitness camp and I believe this kid has plenty to offer to Pakistan cricket. It may take time for Amir to attain the same zip which he had in 2010, so we should not pressurize him and support him so that he can get back to his best.
Shahid Afridi: Happy to have Amir back in team. He told me truth first time I asked him in England. He admitted his mistake we should back him now. Amir also always backed team and didn't lie like others did. He didn't go to TV shows and criticized team like the others did for no reason. Amir spoke the truth both to courts and the Pakistani public. Unlike the rest who kept lying for two-three years. We now need to move on and I will back Amir and expect him to serve Pakistan cricket with total dedication and commitment.
Haroon Rasheed: We have picked Aamir in the touring squads for the internationals in New Zealand because he has done lot of hard work and shown intent to do well for Pakistan since returning to domestic cricket last year. If there are problems with travel documents and Aamir can't tour than Mohammad Irfan will replace him in the T20 squad. Irfan is not originally selected in the T20 squad because we want to give him a short break from the game.
(With Agency inputs)