Smith Smith barred from BPL 2019 By Bangladesh Cricket Board

Written by Vishwas Gupta

Australia captain Steve Smith, who has been serving a one-year ban post his involvement in the ball-tampering scandal, suffered another blow after the Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) banned the right-hander from participating in the upcoming edition of the Bangladesh Premier League (BPL). The move came after franchises participating in the tournament expressed reservations over Smith’s inclusion in the league.

For the BPL’s upcoming season, Smith was signed by Comilla Victorians as a replacement for Asela Gunaratne. What didn’t go down well with the franchises was the fact that Smith was signed from outside the draft – a move which went against the laws of the tournament. The franchises first discussed the concern with BPL’s governing council and the matter was handed over to the BCB to take a final call.

“The rule of the tournament is that if a franchise takes a replacement, his name should be in the list of initial players’ draft. But Smith’s name was not there, ” BCB chief Nizamuddin Chowdhury said.

“Yes he [Smith] is not available for us. We have received a mail in this regard last night,” Victorians chief executive Col[retd] AKM Zaki was quoted as saying by Cricbuzz. The upcoming season of BPL is set to kick off from January 5.

Smith was supposed to arrive in Bangladesh after the departure of senior Pakistan all-rounder Shoaib Malik – who will leave the tournament to resume his international duties with the Men in Green for a limited-overs series against South Africa which begins from January 19.

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Vishwas Gupta