Mohammad Aamir, we want you back!

Published: September 7, 2012

When Amir was handed over a five-year ban, Pakistan had realised that it had lost, to some extent, the future of Pakistan cricket.

Not too long ago, Pakistan witnessed the début of one of the most talented and mesmerising young bowlers in the history of cricket. An aspiring teenager who, at the age of 17, had begun bowling for his country in all formats of cricket. Yes, I am talking about the very promising Mohammad Aamir.

I don’t think anyone has been able to forget what a match-winner this lad had proven to be. Who can forget those deadly spells that played a significantly important part in winning us the World T20 in 2009, or the sight of a 17-year-old showing Sachin Tendulkar the way back to the pavilion?

Suffice to say that numerous flashbacks will keep flowing in – including some very unwanted ones.

In the summer of 2010, Aamir was found guilty of deliberately bowling two no-balls against England in the Lords Test match. The left-arm fast bowler who was at the peak of his career at the time, claims that he was forcefully asked to bowl the no-balls by Mazhar Majeed – a British sporting agent and a bookmaker who played the ‘lead role’ in the spot-fixing story.

Aamir is seen giving an explanation in his latest interview on September 5, in Geo News’ ”Bolain Kya Baat Hai”:

“On one hand he (Majeed) was telling me that a report about me had gone to the ICC, and on the other, that he wanted me to bowl two no-balls for him. I was panicking so much that it didn’t even occur to me how ridiculous it was. I thought that they were saving me and if I don’t do it, it might be a problem for me. “

No doubt, the news of the spot-fixing scandal came as a shock to the world, and Pakistan was, yet again, let down by its golden boys. However, dismay and shame took over when Aamir was handed over a five-year ban by the ICC; Pakistan realised that it had lost a priceless gem.

Who would’ve thought that a gifted teenager from Punjab would walk into the cricket field one day, stun the world with his monumental talent and then knock himself down completely? Surely, he came, he saw, he conquered ─ and he left. Now this is where the buck stops.

“Although I was a good student, I quit school for cricket. Now that I don’t have cricket, I don’t have anything.” says Amir, who now feels helpless every time he watches cricket on TV. ” One day I was on top of the world, and the next day I had come crashing down.”

Is it over for him? Is this a full-stop to his cricketing career just like Mohammad Asif and Salman Butt?

Well the answer is probably, no.

You may ask me why I exhibit sympathy towards someone who disgraced their country and the game of cricket?

To that, all I have to say is that Aamir was young and he made a mistake. Please show me a person who never made one.

Soon after he was charged, the teenager didn’t think twice before admitting to the world what he had done and how apologetic he was. He has been seen in some interviews and other television appearances stating that he had made a mistake; he is quite literally pleading for forgiveness.

“I’ve learnt from my mistakes. I cannot explain the pain I go through each day. It hurts to see the team play and then realise I can’t be part of that. I messed it all up because of one mistake. But I apologise for that and promise that if I’m given another chance, I will put in all my effort with sincerity and honesty.”

It breaks my heart to see genuine tears on Aamir’s face. I believe in him and I believe he is sorry for what he has done. Hasn’t he been punished enough? What is humanity if people aren’t given a second chance? What kind of a nation would we be if we cannot exhibit forgiveness – a trait of our beloved Prophet (pbuh) and a beautiful name of Allah (SWT). Mohammad Amir deserves a second chance.

Let’s face facts; Pakistan has not and will not see a fast bowler as talented, gifted and astonishing as Mohammad Aamir. It is for this reason alone that the world can’t wait to hear about his comeback.

Although I can’t comment on the fate of  Salman Butt and Mohammad Asif, I have an inkling that this 20-year-old speedster could be leading the Pakistan bowling attack by the ICC Cricket World Cup 2015.

Only time will tell.

Do you think Mohammad Aamir will make a comeback to international cricket in 2015?

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Roha Nadeem

Roha Nadeem

An aspiring A' level student crazily in love with cricket, Roha is a budding writer who enjoys interacting with people. She tweets as @RohaNadym

The views expressed by the writer and the reader comments do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of The Express Tribune.

  • Rehman

    Yes but serve your ban first!Recommend

  • http://isharearena.com M.Aswad Mehatb

    Ahh… Amir !! What a great loose !!
    He deserves another chance. period Recommend

  • Awans

    No fraudster should be given another chance. If he will be given another chance then it will be my last day to talk about cricket as Ethics are pretty important for any game and in my view he should made an example by slapping him a life time ban. Recommend

  • Uzair

    Muhammad Amir is left arm fast bowler !!!! link might help u

    http://www.espncricinfo.com/pakistan/content/player/290948.htmlRecommend

  • https://twitter.com/EmranSpeaks Imran Muhammad

    Fair enough, Adding him in our 2015 WC bowling line-up will be tremendous. He can be the key for us to win The WC but he needs some trust from us and his teammates as well, and With some of his batting, he’s well deserved to be in the team for the WC. But I hope he’ll maintain his pace in these 3 years. It’s not easy making a comeback with same bowling talent he had before 5 years.Recommend

  • Uzair

    Who’s that right arm fast bowler!!!!
    Muhammad Amir is left arm fast bowler, link might help

    http://www.espncricinfo.com/pakistan/content/player/290948.htmlRecommend

  • ovais khan

    2nd chance would be given to him as he was deceived by his enemiesRecommend

  • Asim Shamim

    Indeed it was quite disappointing to see such a brilliant talent bwing involved in such a wicked act. But the thing is it had to be done to set such examples so that cricketers of the upcoming generations could take a lesson out of it.Recommend

  • Uzair

    thanks for changing that bowling style . . :DRecommend

  • Roha Nadeem

    @Uzair: The correction is made.Recommend

  • Noman Ansari

    His punishment must be more severe!Recommend

  • https://twitter.com/pugnate Noman Ansari

    When his career is ashes. He has my permission to die.Recommend

  • shahbaz

    he should serve his term and also be fined heavily, his account and properties should be checked against his earnings. actually this should happen for whole team. HE IS A TRAITOR TO OUR NATION.Recommend

  • Manishj

    I think the management also should take ownership of his mistake. How do you expect a 17 year old boy to handle all the pressure he might be facing all alone when he made that mistake ? He perhaps did not have any one around him to bank upon and discuss what he is going through. Such talents need be taken care of. Ideally, some one senior in the team should be asked to be mentor. One who can speak his language, who belongs to the same background, one who a chap like him can open up to etc.

    i think he should be allowed to make a come back. After Shoaib akhtar, we are waiting for a blazing fast bowler from the sub continent. watching him take that stride towards the pitch itself will be so exciting.Recommend

  • forgive me

    if forgiveness is such a nice virtue,why not bestow it upon other two hapless beings.lesser mortals i guess.Recommend

  • zehra

    nope, it is ok to lose the wc 2015 but not give the cheats a chnce, it is our habit of forgiving corrupted ppl that has landed us in this mess. it is about time that it stops somewhereRecommend

  • Khan

    It’s very refreshing to see some people opposing this cheat. Media is backing this cheat heavily and in almost all cases majority of comments are in his favor .. Shame on all these people who bother to write in the defense of these cheaters and criminals.
    IF he was so young why was he representing 180 million people?
    IF he was so immature why was he given a chance over many thousands of talented players, who work harder than him but might never get a chance and will have no future.
    He was mature enough to be building multi million worth bungalows in a country where people study their whole life but don’t afford to have a roof on their head.
    All those who’re saying every one does a mistake should know this was no ordinary mistake it was a crime. He has not cheated just a single person but have sold our country and till Pakistani cricket exists people will look down upon us and will always look at us with suspicion.
    He along with other criminals has written our name in the history for all the wrong reasons. People in the media around the world were mulling to put a ban on the whole Pakistani team because of these three and you guys are up to include them again in the team?(Perhaps we deserve that since we have become all cheats for defending them).

    May I ask you all what is punishment for taking bribe? Is it forgiving or putting those behind the bars who’re involved in bribery?
    What action have we taken against these three cheaters since they were found guilty of taking bribe?
    The ban was served by the ICC and they were put behind bars by England, because their acts were done in England then What punishment have we given them for cheating the whole nation? Why this leniency?
    I say put them behind the bars and take every single property and all the money they have earned through this country.
    There are thousands of better crickets than him .. Don’t show his face ever with those crocodile tears of him. He’s lucky that he lives in this society in any other country media will give them sleepless nights for rest of their lives.
    Unless we change our attitude we will be always represented by cheats and corrupts from the Presidency to Sports to Media & every where else.Recommend

  • Usman

    You know he will take more Australian Dollars for a no Ball in cricker WC 2015. Recommend

  • Shabbir

    @Khan: You are right in the outrage. He denied his crime when initially confronted. He made a fool of Pakistan. Remember how the Pakistani Ambassador in London was defending all of these guys. They made a mockery of Pakistan’s Izzat.

    Nobody is above the game or sport. When people can’t trust a system, they will stop participating in the system, and then all of us lose. If people think that every cricket match is rigged, then we will not watch the cricket games, and then the loss is to the sport itself and all of us fans lose.Recommend

  • Ali S

    At the least, he deserves credit for owning up to his mistake and realizing what he did was very, very wrong – unlike the other two who are still shameless (Salman Butt apparently thinks he is some sort of a framed hero in Punjab). But even if he is given a second chance, I think that he should be monitored very closely since this I’ll-cheat-if-I-can-get-away-with-it mentality runs very deep within our people. It’s also interesting to note that he quit school to play cricket – maybe if he actually paid attention to his studies he might have had a better sense of commitment and responsibility.

    Also, the PCB should give all new recruits – especially those from underprivileged and rural backgrounds – a thorough orientation and make it clear to them that if they’re found to be involved in such incidents even once they should consider their professional career over.Recommend

  • roadkashehzada

    players are role models. do we really want our kids to idealize people like him. why do we fall in traps of if and but(t)s?? we have to have zero tolerance for such matters. no justification. he was young but didnt come out of egg 2 days ago. he knew whts right and whts not. at least we can set an example for other so called innocent kids.Recommend

  • Shayan Butt

    Quite true…… The youngster should get another chance!Recommend

  • bangash

    A cheater like Mohammad Amir should not be allowed back in the team. Nobody will ever trust him.Recommend

  • Waila

    he made me hate Cricket! Recommend

  • Mirza

    Nobody should be rewarded especially if they have not told the whole truth in the first place not after they are caught. This cheat acted as hardened criminal and continued to lie through his teeth even during the hearings.
    Looks like many people want him back. They can get him, they deserve him and it is Pakistan which rewards digging of wicket, chewing of ball and selling of matches and lie. Recommend

  • Salman

    If we do a mistake we want forgiveness but if someone else do mistake our answer is kill him. He should be given another chance. Recommend

  • Anonymous

    not at all Recommend

  • hassan

    One great thing about the Pakistani society is that, even if you commit a heinous crime in broad daylight, there will be people to support you, to condone your actions and to even go any extent to defend you.

    This article is yet another example. Keep it up ! Recommend

  • Huma Adnan

    Our Nation has one big problem. we dont know the word “Compassion”. For all those who are posting against this article that Mohammad Aamir should not get a second chance, Partially, i share the same feeling of sadness and heart broke that we suffered due to his mistake, but the question is What now..?? Should we hang him coz he just got carried away with human instincts..? Should we banish him from our hearts and minds just because he made a mistake? or we can forgive him, show some compassionism towards him and give him a chance to make us all proud again. If one of us had done the same mistake, we would have definitely be waiting for a second chance, coz i believe, everyone deserves a second chance specially if one admits and realises what blunder he/she has done. So, i pray and wish that we give Mohammad Aamir another chance and show us all what bright star he is :)
    PS: Well done Roha, very well written and articulated article :) Recommend

  • MonsieurCritique

    No we DON”T.

    Go to school, get a degree and a job like the rest of us. Your cricketing days are over. Recommend

  • http://www.kabacreations.com Vishnu Dutta

    He was given 6 months jail in UK for defrauding british bookies, as he had committed a crime against British.

    He was banned for 5 years by ICC as he had committed a crime against cricket.

    He has cheated 180 million people, where is the punishment for that?
    Shouldnt PCB take action as he had cheated them and ruined the name of pak cricket?
    Shouldnt Law take action against him as he has cheated with pak awam?Recommend

  • Ahmed Zafar

    I think the writer did a fantastic job in pleading Amir’s case, and has absolutely convinced me that he deserves a second chance. After all imagine what kind of place this world would be if we were not forgiving one another. Well done Ms. Roha.Recommend

  • gp65

    “Although I was a good student, I quit school for cricket. Now that I don’t have cricket, I don’t have anything.” says Amir, ”

    Well what stops him from going back to school now? HE is just 18.

    Anyway this is the 2nd blogpushing for Amir to be back in PAkistani team. Considering that it is still 2 whole years before he can do that per ICC punishment, he has clearly activated his PR machine in very good time.Recommend

  • gp65

    @Noman Ansari: “When his career is ashes. He has my permission to die.”

    Permission to die? Why so harsh?This seems so unlike you.Recommend

  • Noman Ansari

    @gp65:

    The Dark Knight rises quote. It was a joke. :) Recommend

  • EYM

    Once a traitor, always a traitor!Recommend

  • mohammad ali

    hey bloody mad peoples kabi apne bare me socha kitne fraud karte ho allah se apne gharwalon se han or ek banda sorry bol rha hai to y not us ko chance nhi milna chaye milna chaye or mile ga in shallahRecommend

  • http://blogs.tribune.com.pk/story/13767/mohammad-amir-we-want-you-back/ SAM

    These three Pakistani players were not the fixers because there were many others n there is no one i have seen in cricket who didn’t earn money by illegal means. Amir must be back rather than others………Recommend

  • Sheharyar

    Hey ppl he won’t be available for 2015 world cup anyways! as the five year ban will end in sep of 2015 and world cup will might be starting In oct(wiki), one
    Month won’t be enough i guess!!Recommend

  • MUHAMMAD HASSAN

    yes he must be return but he will surly not be able to play cricked which he used to play an year ago. He will return after completing the 5 years ban and if a player is out of the screen for such a long period he surely can not return to his peak time. We have lost a great player due to Salman Butt. (sham on butt).Recommend

  • gp65

    @Noman Ansari: “When his career is ashes. He has my permission to die”.

    I have read many of your posts which are always level headed. Why such bile for his young man (you have my permission to die). Like you, I too feel he should no longer play (just as Jadeja and Azhar were thrown out by India for life).But why should someone so young be denied a shot at having a good life is some other field? It’s surely not too late for a fresh start elsewhere?Recommend

  • adi

    His punishment should not be so much sever we must give him the 2nd chance to prove himself.Recommend

  • Gratgy

    Aamir should consider himself lucky he got of with a light sentence. Considering that match fixing is like stealing money from the spectators and bringing bad name to Pakistan, I guess under Shariat laws he would have said farewell to his arms. (I might be wrong here.)

    What would have been his prescribed punishment under Shariat laws?.. Anyone?Recommend

  • http://www.facebook.com/gcufpharmd Dr. Suleman Atique Gondal

    I think he should pay back all the money he has got from this insane act.He should submit it to Govt.of Pakistan.He should also declare his assets to the Public and inform nation how he managed to buy residential plots in most expensive area of Lahore.From where he got that money.Because he has some plots even before this matter came in Public.Then he should be accepted back otherwise not.Recommend

  • M

    I’m sorry, but I have no sympathy for Muhammad Amir. He deserves what he got. Pakistan has had brilliant bowlers in the past and will continue to produce brilliant bowlers. Recommend