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S Sreesanth happy after Supreme Court revokes his life ban

"Cricket is my bread and butter."

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S. Sreesanth
S. Sreesanth. (Photo Source: Twitter)

The Supreme Court of India on Friday scrapped cricketer S Sreesanth’s life ban for match-fixing but also stopped short of acquitting him. The court said in its statement that the Kerala bowler’s long-running case had not been handled well, and it gave the Board of Control for Cricket in India three months to reconsider his punishment, which can no longer be a lifetime ban on playing cricket.

In the 2013 edition of the Indian Premier League, Sreesanth, 36, was arrested for illegal betting and spot-fixing along with teammates Ankeet Chavan and Ajit Chandila. Back then, the police had also launched legal proceedings against the entire Rajasthan Royals franchise which was then banned from the IPL for two years.

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Sreesanth was released on bail, but till date faces criminal proceedings in the Delhi High Court. MS Dhoni-led Chennai Super Kings was also banned for two years after its owner Gurunath Meiyappan was held guilty on charges of betting in the same edition.

“The life ban has been lifted and that’s a big thing,” Sreesanth said after the ruling. “The court has given me a huge lifeline and I am happy with the opportunity given to me. There are so many leagues happening all around the country and cricket is my bread and butter. To take care of my family, I need cricket back.”

Statement from Sreesanth’s lawyer 

Sreesanth’s lawyer, on the other hand, reiterated that there is no evidence of the bowler underperforming in 2013 in return for cash from bookmakers. “The team (Rajasthan Royals) and its owners were banned for two years only. It is completely unfair that a life ban was imposed on him (Sreesanth),” his lawyer Salman Khurshid was quoted as saying by the local media.

The BCCI said that it complied with the court’s decision and would take up Sreesanth’s case in its next meeting. The 11th edition of the IPL will start on March 23 with a game between Chennai Super Kings and Royal Challengers Bangalore.

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