Panesar released from contract

County cricket side Sussex said it will allow England spin bowler Monty Panesar to leave the club at the end of the 2013 season after an investigation into the player's drunken behavior at a nightclub. The 31-year-old Panesar, who has 48 test caps for England, received a police fine for urinating on bouncers at a club in Brighton on Aug. 5. He will become a free agent on Sept. 27. "Clearly this season has been a very difficult time for Monty Panesar," Sussex chief executive Zac Toumazi said. "The club has agreed that Monty will be released from his contract. This will give him every opportunity to put his personal and professional life back on track."

Sussex has allowed Panesar to join second-tier Essex on loan until the end of the season — at the request of the player. "I have endured a challenging time this year off the field and my frustrations have sometime got the better of me professionally," Panesar said. "I apologize for letting the club, my colleagues and my fans down." The left-arm spinner, who was included in the England squad for the third Ashes test against Australia at Old Trafford, spoke of his intention to return to the international scene in his statement on the Sussex website.

"I believe that if I can maintain the bowling progress I have made in recent weeks which enabled me to be selected for the test squad at Old Trafford, I can fulfill my long-held ambition of becoming the best spin bowler in the world, over time."