LONDON  - Former Pakistan captain Imran Khan has said that he wants to see Mohammad Amir back in the national team after he serves his ban for spot-fixing. He was recently released from a juvenile detention centre, but still has most of his five-year ban from cricket to serve.

Amir was last year jailed along with Salman Butt and Mohammad Asif after taking part in spot-fixing during Pakistan’s tour of England in a scandal that rocked cricket. Amir was also given a five-year ban from cricket but has appealed against the length of the sentence and indicated a desire to resume his cricket as soon as possible.

“I would have him back,” Khan said during an interview on the BBC’s TMS show. “He didn’t lie. He was straightforward. He said, ‘Look, I did this, it was a mistake, and I ask for forgiveness’. And for a 19-year-old, yes, I would forgive him.”

He added: “My heart has always gone out to Amir because he was one of the best young talents I’ve seen. But at least he pleaded guilty straight away and said ‘I’ve made a mistake’.” Amir was recently released from a juvenile detention centre after he pleaded guilty to spot-fixing charges, but still has most of his five-year ban from cricket to serve.