Posted by: nestaquin | September 2, 2010

Cricket Fix: Confessions of the Not Guilty

Confession and rumour is running rife throughout Australian cricket circles in regards to fixing in cricket.

In the past few days no less than Shane Watson, Mitchell Johnson, Brett Lee, Simon Katich and Dave Warner have revealed that they have reported approaches by criminal organisations to the ICC through their administrators. Bangladeshis Shakib Al Hasan and Tamim Iqbal have joined the chorus disclosing that they were approached and duly disclosed it to cricket’s highest authority as far back as 2008.

I’ve learned that many players are concerned and have decided to speak  after Cricket Australia chief James Sutherland feigned shock and surprise when confronted by journalists over the revelations from London last weekend.

Expect a few more to come out of the woodwork in the next week.

By simply being cricketers their sporting integrity and lucrative sponsorships are in jeopardy and a collective decision has been made to get on the front foot about this murky, distasteful affair.

The players have little choice. The ICC is aphotic in terms of public transparency and with little or no action likely, despite the compelling evidence, all cricketers are prone to be tarred with the same filthy brush.

The ECB’s Chamberlain style appeasement in continuing the tour and the Pakistani’s complete lack of contrition is only adding to the suffering, betrayal and innuendo. That the ECB have stated that the tour must continue because of financial considerations should be an amusing irony but the only one’s chuckling are the Pakistani cretins and their criminal mates.

Make no mistake, from this point forward whichever team play Pakistan, whatever their eleven, are losers before a ball is bowled. Even if they win, the match will appear fixed. Individuals don’t escape either. Stuart Broad played the innings of his life at Lord’s but forevermore, deserved or not, his achievement is tainted with suspicion.

Let’s be fair dinkum. The ICC cannot defeat the criminals and the administrators appear unwilling or unable to rid the game of players that fraternise in their circles. For cricket to survive as a legitimate sport this simply cannot continue. A different approach is needed.

What should be done I do not know but by showing the character off the field that they are applauded for on it, the Australian and Bangladeshi players who have made public their experiences are setting the example that their peers should follow.

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Responses

  1. It would have been great if ECB had cancelled the one dayers. KP is not the only England batsmen that needs a couple of county games ahead of the Ashes.
    Kick Pakistan out of international cricket for a few years.
    It is good that Aussie and Bangla plays reported the baddies but how many took the money and overstepped to order ?

  2. First off, the Dave Warner being approached by bookies stories is a canard. It starts off with a categorical statement that an approach was made, meanders to state that he could have been approached and then ends by stating that a group of Indians approached the players during the Champions League at a pub and went away as soon as they were asked.

    Ostensibly, since said people did not fit in the template of an “average Indian fan”, ergo, they/he were bookies!

    Next up, the Pakistani players. Circumstantial evidence can be manufactured, and the NOTW has previous. NOTW is also known to have transgressed the boundaries of law on more than one occasion. And yet, tthe NOTW story is taken as credible!

    The burden of proof resides with the accusers, not the accused. And until that time, “Innocent until proven guilty” should be the maxim by which to judge the Pakistani players.

    Unless the argument is that different folks should be judged differently!

    Cheers,

    • Homer, your argument has been addressed on the previous thread, however, your comment reminds me of the old axiom that states that there are none so blind as those that will not see.

      • Selective vision, like half knowledge, is a dangerous thing!

        • Aphotic.
          “The aphotic zone is formally defined as the depths beyond which less than 1% of sunlight penetrates. ” Good word! and very appropriate.

          I agree with what you say, but lets not over react. Probably 99% of matches are clean. I don’t think the sport is in danger of descending to farce. I think Pakistan have a problem (unfortunately I don’t think I’ll ever forget the image of Afridi chewing on a ball in Perth out of my head), but that’s hardly news, and most other nations also have occasional problems, but most elite cricketers simply want to compete and win.

          Bit disturbed though about the subdued reaction from PCB.

  3. The ECB would be in breach of contract were they to cancel and be bankrupted by the millions they would have to pay to broadcasters. They just can’t do it, much, as I suspect, they would like to.

  4. So the investigation has moved from 4 players to only 3, with Kamran Akmal now no longer being investigated. Does that mean the investigators are satisfied that Akmal real is just a poor quality wicket keeper?

    • Yes, I saw something from Healy recently about that. He said he was helping Akmal in Aus when they were there, Akmal was already worried about his form, and that you can’t fake dropped catches like that, especially standing up to a spinner where it’s a split second event. He said he clearly wasn’t cheating, so I guess the inference was yes he was a poor quality keeper.
      Although he does seem to have done better in England.

  5. One other point – if they are looking at suspect goings on in cricket, I’d like the net widened to include matches involving Warwickshire CC this season.

  6. Sorry I seem to be having some trouble operating your blog controls. I meant this comment to be in response to the article, not the dialogue with Homer, where I posted it.
    Got my license from the wheeties packet.

    Aphotic.
    “The aphotic zone is formally defined as the depths beyond which less than 1% of sunlight penetrates. ” Good word! and very appropriate.

    I agree with what you say, but lets not over react. Probably 99% of matches are clean. I don’t think the sport is in danger of descending to farce. I think Pakistan have a problem (unfortunately I don’t think I’ll ever forget the image of Afridi chewing on a ball in Perth out of my head), but that’s hardly news, and most other nations also have occasional problems, but most elite cricketers simply want to compete and win.

    Bit disturbed though about the subdued reaction from PCB.

  7. I saw a lot of Kmaran this summer and he wasn’t dropping to order, he was dropping them because his confidence was shot.

    Amir and Asif, on the other hand, were as confident as Lillee and Thomson in 1974.

    • shouldn’t that be Lillee and Marsh at Headingly 1981?

  8. I think your comment “from now onwards any team that plays Pakistan is a loser…” is very harsh. You seem to be implying that every Pakistani team will always cheat, and that all games involving them are fixed. That is blatantly unfair, don’t you agree?

  9. Because of the charges, video and allegations Pakistan not only have to be clean but they need to make every effort to appear so.

    When trust is lost it takes a considered, contrite and humble approach to win it back. We’ve yet to see anything but a stubborn obfuscation from the PCB.

    Truth is Pakistan’s cricket reputation is in tatters and they’ll need a generational and attitude change before it is restored.

  10. Spin spin spin. The last thing Pakistan will do now is admit guilt. The longer they wriggle and deny the more humiliating and ultimately less likely becomes the admission that Pakistan cricketers did what the world freely acknowledges.

    How can the Pakistan cricketing community be taken seriously? After the shame of the charges subsided, the entirely predictable and cynical instincts of self preservation kicked in. The affair was portrayed, in the grand sub continental tradition, as all somebody else’€™s fault.

    Pakistanis would have us believe that it is more likely another anti-Pakistan, anti-Muslim conspiracy rather than plain old fashioned cheating This much we can be sure of: Pakistan is a dishonest and dishonourable participant in world cricket and its leaders and spokesmen, including Pakistan’s€™ diplomatic representative in the UK are a laughing stock.

    It is not clear where lies the greatest shame; with the disgraceful attitude and conniving behaviour of the Pakistanis, or with those members of the cricketing community who continue to entertain this appallingly immature and deceitful behaviour that continually defines Pakistan cricket.

  11. Oh I agree that the PCB’s lack of contrition is very irritating, but as a nation they have been under siege – drone aircraft, suicide bombings, floods, terrible economic situation, the entire world calling them a failed state and a basket case, and now THIS – and their irrational response can atleast be explained if not excused.

    But Brits and Aussies (and Indians like me) dont have any excuse or explanation for irrationally claiming that the entire Pakistan establishment is a bunch of cheats.
    Look at this: http://www.guardian.co.uk/football/2009/sep/22/matt-le-tissier-betting-scam
    Last year Matt Le Tissier admitted to trying to ‘fix’ some spread-betting in some football club games in the 1990’s. Surely it doesnt mean that all English people are “dishonest and dishonorable participants in world soccer and its leaders and spokespeople are a laughing stock”.
    When the Italian soccer team came under a cloud for fixing games in 2005-06, I dont recall people claiming that Italians are ‘dishonest and dishonorable participants in world soccer’ either.
    Therefore, surely not the Pakistanis now!

    • Personally, I despise generalisations too but there are major problems in Pakistan cricket and they just didn’t appear last week. As for the Italians I can confidently claim that here in Australia the vast majority of people without Italian descent find them a scourge on the World Game.


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