Former Australian skipper Steve Smith, who is currently serving year-long suspension by Cricket Australia for his involvement in massive ball-tampering scandal in South Africa, has been barred from the upcoming edition of the Bangladesh Premier League (BPL) after some franchises raised objections about his inclusion.
The 29-year-old was roped in by Comilla Victorians for the sixth edition of the BPL, which is slated to be held from January 5 to February 8. He was expected to join the team in mid-January to replace veteran Pakistan batsman Shoaib Malik for the second phase of the to T20 tournament.
Confirming the news, BCB chief Nizamuddin Chowdhury informed that Smith's name was not present in the list of initial players' draft.
"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.Some franchises raised objection about it. So we have to bar him from playing the BPL," the BCB chief said.
Meanwhile, suspended former Australian vice-captain David Warner is all set to feature for Syljet Sixers in the 2019 BPL.
Smith and Warner were handed year-long bans by Cricket Australia from international cricket and Australia's domestic Sheffield Shield and Big Bash League for their role in ball-tampering scaldal in South Africa that sent shock waves across cricket world in March.
Besides the duo, bowler Cameron Bancroft was also imposed a nine-month suspension from international and state cricket for attempting to artificially alter the condition of the ball during the four-match Test series against South Africa.
The BPL would have been Smith's third T20 league outing after featuring for Canada's Global T20 and the Caribbean Premier League since suspension.