Afridi appeals against Pakistan cricket penalties

KARACHI: Pakistan''s Twenty20 captain Shahid Afridi is the first to appeal against his punishment following a disastrous tour of Australia that saw the country''s cricket board come down hard on top players.

Afridi was among seven players who were punished by a Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) inquiry committee, set up to investigate the team''s dismal performance on the December-February tour.

The 30-year-old all-rounder, appointed captain for next month''s World Twenty20 in the West Indies, was fined three million rupees for tampering with the ball during a one-day match in Australia last month.

He was also put on a six-month probation during which his conduct will be strictly monitored.

Pakistan lost all three Tests, five one-day matches and the only Twenty20 international on the tour.

Former captains Younis Khan and Mohammad Yousuf were banned for an unspecified period, while Shoaib Malik and Rana Naved-ul-Hasan were banned for one year and heavily fined.

Brothers Kamran and Umer Akmal were also heavily fined by the PCB in an unprecedented move on March 10.

PCB chief operating officer Wasim Bari confirmed Afridi was the first to lodge his appeal.

The PCB last week appointed two retired Supreme Court judges -- Muneer Sheikh and Jamshed Ali Shah -- and a former High Court judge, Irfan Qadir, to deal with the appeals.

Malik, Naved and Younus have also hinted lodging appeal early next month.

PCB has set a 30-day period for appeals.