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Malik to lead Pakistan in Australia T20 match

Pakistan said Monday that sacked captain Shoaib Malik would return to lead the team’s Twenty20 match on tour in Australia after star all-rounder Shahid Afridi was banned in a ball-tampering row.

“Malik will lead the Pakistan team in the only T20 match against Australia in the absence of Afridi,” the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) said. Afridi, 29, was caught by television cameras biting the ball in Pakistan’s fifth and final one-dayer against Australia at Perth on Sunday.

Under International Cricket Council rules any attempt to change the condition of the ball through illegal means is a violation of the players’ code of conduct and is liable to punishment. The on-field and third umpires reported the incident to match referee Ranjan Madugalle who conducted separate hearings with team manager Abdur Raqeeb and Afridi before handing the player a two-match international Twenty 20 ban. Yousuf has not been named in the 15-man party for the Twenty20 match.

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