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    Kaneria will plead innocent, says brother

    Karachi: Former Pakistan leg-spinner Danish Kaneria will protest his innocence when he appears before an England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) disciplinary hearing investigating corruption charges this month, his brother Vicky said on Tuesday.

    "Our lawyers have sent the preliminary reply within the deadline given to us by the ECB. We have informed them Danish will appear for the hearing starting from May 21," Vicky told Reuters. "Our lawyers have stated in the reply that Danish is not guilty and he has been unfairly charged on the basis of a statement."

    Kaneria has been summoned to the hearing in Britain after being named in a London court in February as a go-between in the spot-fixing scandal that resulted in a four-month jail sentence for his former Essex team-mate Mervyn Westfield.

    "We want this hearing to be held because we see it as the best way to get Danish's name cleared once and for all from this spot-fixing case," Vicky said.

    The ECB disciplinary committee charged Kaneria and Westfield in the spot-fixing case that started after a Pro-40 County match between Essex and Durham in 2009. The England County player Westfield was jailed by an English court after admitting he had accepted money for deliberately bowling wides in that match. The ECB announced it would be holding its own inquiry into the scandal after Westfield's lawyers also named Kaneria in court as a go-between during the trial.

    Kaneria, only the second Hindu to play Test cricket for Pakistan, has been sidelined from international cricket since September 2010. The PCB has so far distanced itself from the case and one official claimed this was because under the ICC anti-corruption code, a player charged in his individual capacity had to defend himself, and his home board cannot get involved or support him in any way. The PCB has allowed the leg-spinner to continue playing domestic cricket.