BCCI Waiting For ICC Investigation; Accused Umpires Deny Accusations
The Int'l Cricket Council has launched an investigation after an umpire involved in a recent match featuring Australia and England in Sri Lanka "was implicated in a spot-fixing sting by an Indian TV channel," according to Peter Lalor of THE AUSTRALIAN. Undercover reporters for India TV "claimed to have caught six umpires allegedly agreeing to fix matches or provide information" in a sting that was conducted before the recent ICC World T20 Championships. The TV station named some umpires willing to accept money: Pakistan's Nadeem Ghauri and Anees Siddiqui, Bangladesh's Nadir Shah, and Sri Lanka's Gamini Dissanayake, Sagara Gallage and Maurice Winston. The ICC has launched a probe into the allegations and "asked to view the footage." The governing body said in a statement: "The ICC and its relevant members have been made aware of the allegations made by India TV this evening and calls on the station to turn over any information which can assist the ICC's urgent investigations into this matter. The ICC reiterates its zero-tolerance toward corruption whether alleged against players or officials" (THE AUSTRALIAN, 10/10). The PTI noted the Board of Cricket Control in India will wait for the ICC "to complete its investigations." Senior BCCI official Rajeev Shukla said, The ICC has to take a call on it. They (ICC) will be taking appropriate action. As far as we are concerned, we will take action as we will deem fit. Our job is to keep the game clean. The BCCI takes strong and immediate action whenever such cases come up" (PTI, 10/9).
CLEAN HANDS: The AP noted a Sri Lankan cricket official said that "they are studying tapes" of the TV sting operation. Sri Lanka Cricket CEO Ajith Jayasekara said that "there has been no official communication" from the ICC on allegation by India TV that Sri Lankans were involved. He said that the local anti-corruption unit "will work with the ICC in the investigations" (AP, 10/9). The AFP noted the umpires at the center of the bribery claims "denied on Tuesday they were willing to fix matches for cash." The accusations were broadcast only a day after the West Indies' victory over hosts Sri Lanka in the final of the World T20 tournament. None of the umpires were involved in the tournament (AFP, 10/9). The PTI added that former umpire Darrell Hair "is not at all surprised by the allegations of fixing against match officials." Hair said that rumors "started doing rounds since the birth of the cash-rich Indian Premier League." Hair: "I was wondering how long it would take before some umpire did some stupid things. There have been rumours going around for ages, since the IPL started, that umpires were involved. It all comes down to two things: opportunity and greed. If you're the type of person and you're given the opportunity, the greedy part of you will say, 'Yeah, I'm in'" (PTI, 10/9).