Mumbai: As the call for revoking the ban on Mohammed Azharuddin gathered steam in India, the International Cricket Council (ICC) on Thursday made it clear that only the game's governing body had the ``absolute discretion'' to reinstate banned players.

Although the ICC did not mention any specific case, it was apparently referring to recent reports that the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) was contemplating to revoke the life ban imposed on former captain Azharuddin for his alleged role in match-fixing.

``The process would begin with the banned player writing to the ICC Chief Executive Officer (CEO) making a formal request to be reinstated,'' the ICC said in a statement, outlining the procedure for revoking a ban. ``The ICC CEO would consider the request and has the absolute discretion to reinstate the player if he was satisfied it was appropriate to do so.''

However, if he was not satisfied, he should exercise his discretion and would request the ICC Code of Conduct Commissioner, Michael Beloff QC, to constitute an Official Enquiry.'' PTI

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