x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 19 January 2018

Mohammad Amir released from prison and wishes Pakistan good luck

Misbah-ul-Haq says focus will stay on completing an England whitewash, following the news of the fast bowlers release after serving half his six-month sentence.

DUBAI // Misbah-ul-Haq, the Pakistan captain, insists his side remain focused on completing a series cleansweep over England and will not be distracted by news of the release of Mohammad Amir.

Amir, the Pakistan fast bowler, has been released from a young offenders institution in the UK after serving half of a six-month sentence for his part in the spot-fixing scandal of 2010.

Upon his release, his lawyer stated he now hopes to appealing his five-year suspension from cricket, while Amir issued a statement congratulating his former teammates on their success in the UAE.

"I am delighted for the Pakistani cricket team," his statement read. "My thoughts are with them. I wish them every success."

According to Misbah, whose side have won their first two Tests against England, and have been free from crisis for once in the process, Pakistan are solely focused on the final Test in Dubai.

"It is totally up to the management and what the ICC decide and what the [Pakistan Cricket Board] decide," Misbah said.

"It is not my decision. Once he is cleared, once he is available, then we will see what happens. We are here to play fair and we are focused on this game.

Andrew Strauss, the England captain, said Amir, who was found guilty of corruption along with his fellow Pakistan players Salman Butt and Mohammed Asif, had suffered badly.

"The deterrent for match-fixing or spot-fixing should be as strong as it possibly can be, to make sure people don't do it in the future," Strauss said.

"There was a long judicial inquiry into how long those bans should be. These guys have suffered quite badly, they have been to prison, [but] on the cricketing side, that is for the ICC to decide."