New Zealand skipper Brendon McCullum supports tainted bowler Mohammad Amir’s inclusion in the limited-over squad by saying that Amir should be given “the benefit of doubt”.

Mohammad Amir has been named in the 16-man squad for three T20Is and three ODIs in the New Zealand tour, which will be started from 15th January.

McCullum told Radio Sport on Sunday, “The ICC has allowed him to make some steps back into international cricket and we’ll give him the benefit of the doubt.

“There are so many circumstances involved in how each case is played out. He was a very young man at the time and I think he’s gone through a sound rehabilitation programme and ultimately if he gets out on the field against us, then you play against the man you’re playing against not a man who may have made some mistakes as a youngster.

“In all honestly, it hasn’t dominated our team discussions. We’ve had our eyes on other things and once the Pakistan boys arrive here we’ll focus our attentions to their lineup.”

New Zealand Cricket chief executive David White also supports Amir’s comeback. He said,“First and foremost he’s been cleared to play all forms of cricket by the ICC (International Cricket Council). We’re guided by them. We haven’t discussed it at board level but my personal view is he was a very, very young man, a boy really (when he was suspended). He showed remorse at the time, admitted to it. He’s gone through all the rehabilitation and education as prescribed by the ICC. I’m personally comfortable with him coming to New Zealand and playing.”

Before Christmas, New Zealand’s immigration department released a statement that they didn’t receive Amir’s visa application yet. They also said that they would consider when it is received.

 A decision is likely next week.  


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