Rana ban likely to be lifted at hearing

Lahore: The 12-month ban imposed on Pakistani all-rounder Rana Naved-ul-Hasan by the Pakistan Cricket Board is likely to be removed tomorrow, when he will appear before an appellate tribunal, formed to hear appeals of players banned or fined after a disastrous Australian tour.

"He has already served six months of the ban (imposed in March) and the tribunal is expected to remove the remaining ban period immediately," a source said.

The all-rounder had met with the PCB chairman Ejaz Butt last month in which he apologised for his conduct and behaviour on the Australian tour that eventually led to his ban and fine of two million Pakistani rupees.

Rana was among seven players who were either banned or fined by the board on the recommendations of an inquiry committee that probed the team`s poor performance in Australia and found the players guilty of misconduct and indiscipline.

Except for Rana all the other players have had their bans lifted or fines halved by the board or the appellate tribunal.

"There is every likelihood the fine may also be halved or waived as Rana, during his meeting with the PCB chief, specifically requested him to remove the ban and fine," a source said.

Rana and former captain Younis Khan have both not been picked for the national team since the Australian tour.

Younis has not been picked despite his indefinite ban being removed by the appellate tribunal in July. A source in the legal department of the PCB told PTI that Younis would not be considered for Pakistan until he met with the PCB chairman like the other banned or fined players and "sorted out his issue."

"The legal department of the board has sent Younis letters and reminders asking him to come to the PCB offices and meet with relevant officials to resolve the issue," the source added.

Younis has kept a low profile since returning from England in August after playing county cricket and despite being repeatedly ignored by the PCB, even for the series against South Africa in Dubai and Abu Dhabi, starting later this month.