The lifetime ban imposed by Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) on cricketer S Sreesanth was set aside by the Kerala High Court on Monday. The ban was imposed over allegations of spot-fixing during a 2013 Indian Premier League (IPL) match.
Though S Sreesanth was acquitted in 2015 by a Delhi court, the BCCI slapped a lifetime ban which Sreesanth fought in the Kerala High Court. The cricketer is happy that the court set aside the ban imposed by the BCCI.
Speaking exclusively to NewsX on next steps, Sreesanth says, “There’s a BCCI meeting tomorrow. I don’t know if they will be discussing my case but I would like them to give me the green light stating I can play and the lifetime ban is lifted. I have waited for four-and-a-half years for the court’s verdict so I don’t mind waiting a few more months for BCCI’s announcement. I need the support of the BCCI and the Kerala Cricket Association. I am hoping to play the Ranji trophy in October.”
The cricketer has been confident of the lifetime ban being overturned by the High Court and has kept a low profile since he was vindicated by the Delhi court of spot-fixing charges.
Says Sreesanth, “I wanted to make sure that the removal of the ban comes through the right channel. I had full faith in judicial system and I am happy with the outcome. After I was cleared of charges in 2015, I was expecting the BCCI to life the ban but there was no news. So I had to approach the Kerala High Court. I am thankful to my counsels Sivan Madathil and Rebecca John. I hope BCCI respects the law.”
The Kerala High Court had admonished him for not disowning his friend Jiju Janardhanan who is alleged to have played an active in spot-fixing. Ask Sreesanth about this and he says, “I was never really close friends with Jiju. He was a cricketer who played alongside me for many years. It was during the case hearings in Delhi that I came to know about his involvement. I’m not in touch with him. I don’t have any hatred towards anyone but I felt it’s better to stay away. I wanted to clear my name and I am happy that I have.”