ECB chairman demands life bans for match-fixers

Published: Monday, May 21, 2001, 0:34 [IST]
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 London: Lord MacLaurin, chairman of the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB), on Sunday repeated his demand for life bans on international players found guilty of match-fixing. The International Cricket Council's (ICC) anti-graft chief Paul Condon will make public his report on how widespread corruption has plunged the game into turmoil on Wednesday. Condon's findings will be presented first to the ICC on Monday morning. MacLaurin has no doubts at what punishment should be given to offenders. "I think everyone knows my my view and you have to have life bans, it's no good mucking about with this," he told BBC Radio. "Three months, six months, a year is no good if people transgress and they besmirch the great game, they are out of it. "I have made my position absolutely clear. I don't think there is any room for people in the game who transgress rules and regulations. "If it is an England player and I only have jurisdiction over English players then they know very well what would happen to them in the English game." MacLaurin's comments come ahead of a BBC documentary to be screened later Sunday which reinforces the suspicion that matches in the the world-famous Sharjah tournament in the Gulf were fixed. In the programme, Inspector KK Paul, a prominent figure in the Indian police's investigation of cricket corruption, was asked whether he believed matches in Sharjah had been rigged. Paul replied: "Definitely. There does appear to be very strong suspicion that some results have been manipulated. "Also it is widely known that certain mafia gangs based in the Gulf countries have been heavily betting on cricket and manipulating the results." Asked whether he accepted there might have been match-fixing in Sharjah, organiser Sheik Abdulrahman Bukhatir said: "Until I have proof I cannot disclaim that or say I don't know. "I am not saying there is no match-fixing. Obviously it is very clear that if a match is fixed, it's between two people, a bookie and a player. "One thing I can say, Sharjah matches are of such high profile, it would be very difficult for a player to be fixing matches. "It is obvious people are watching every move, every stroke, every ball." AFP

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