Board Of Control For Cricket In India Imposes Life Bans On Players Accused Of Match-Fixing
India's cricket authorities "have imposed life bans on two players accused of fixing elements of matches during last season's Indian Premier League," according to James Crabtree of the FINANCIAL TIMES. The Board of Control for Cricket in India said that "it had banned" former int'l S. Sreesanth and another player, Ankeet Chavan, following a meeting in New Delhi. The "most serious corruption scandal in the history of the controversial annual tournament" began in May with the arrest of three cricketers, including the two players banned on Friday, and more than a dozen bookmakers, on accusations of "spot-fixing." The bans "are the latest move from the BCCI in an attempt to repair the image of its tainted league" (FT, 9/13). In Chennai, Rakesh Rao wrote "the committee heard other accused Amit Singh, Siddharth Trivedi and Harmeet Singh during a meeting that lasted nearly four hours." Singh was handed a five-year ban, Trivedi was banned for one year and Harmeet "was let off owing to lack of evidence." All the four players punished "belong to Rahul Dravid-led Rajasthan Royals." Sreesanth and Chavan "have joined Mohammad Azharuddin and Ajay Sharma" in the list of int'l cricketers banned for life by the BCCI's disciplinary committee (THE HINDU, 9/13).
CHALLENGE COMING: The PTI reported calling the life ban imposed on Sreesanth "bizarre," his lawyer Rebecca John said the tainted pacer will challenge the BCCI's decision in court as it is "completely against the principles of natural justice." John said, "It has based its findings on personal interactions with members of Delhi Police as well as taken material from the chargesheet that has been filed by the police before a sessions court. If that is so then they should have waited for the court to determine whether or not any of this holds up in legal proceedings" (PTI, 9/15). The PTI also reported describing the life ban imposed on him by the BCCI as the biggest setback in his life, Sreesanth on Saturday maintained that "he had not done any wrong and would prove his innocence in the spot-fixing scandal." Sreesanth said he did not know why he was being "framed" in this situation. Sreesanth: "I can tell that I have not done anything wrong" (PTI, 9/14).