After years of denial Danish Kaneria has finally admitted his role in a fixing scandal that led to the imprisonment of former Essex team-mate Mervyn Westfield. His revelation, as well as his apology Mr. Westfield, to his fans, and Pakistan may bring him a measure of closure for the remainder of his days, but the path back to the cricketing world will remain firmly blocked.

There is no desire from him or from the Pakistani authorities to see him back in action. He ranks as one of the country’s most prolific Test bowlers but since 2012 the team has moved on. The recent series win over Australia demonstrates that a blemish-free group of new players are now blazing the way forward, with the torments and controversies of the previous decade left far behind. There have been recurring incidents, and there will be more in the future undoubtedly, but it feels as if the team and the regulating authorities have turned a page.

The only debate this confession reignites is; how severely should players who indulge is fixing matches and spot-fixing should be penalised? One can point to Muhammad Aamir, who was welcomed back into the fold by the Pakistan Cricketing Board (PCB) after serving a prison sentence and a five year ban and argue that others – if they have served their time and are truly repentant – should be offered the same facility. If Danish Kaneria has expressed a desire to rejoin the team, would it be entertained?

The distinction that must be made here, and the one that was made by the PCB as well as the British justice system, is between willing instigators and those who succumb to pressure due to age or naivety. The knowing, calculating instigators – which Kaneria was – need to be kept away from the sport forever, while young impressionable individuals might have a way back if their actions were not so severe.