PCB moots legal action against match-fixing accusers

Published: Thursday, July 11, 2002, 23:53 [IST]
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Karachi: The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) said on Thursday it was planning action against people, who accuse national cricket players of match-fixing on flimsy grounds.

"The PCB and its legal adviser will consult the Law Ministry and evolve a system through which we can take all those accusers to task who fail to provide any proof," PCB chairman Tauqir Zia told reporters. "With two inquiries we have buried the match-fixing controversy in Pakistan and now we won't tolerate any attempt to malign Pakistan cricket," Lieutenant General Zia said. Action against people who cry wolf would not be limited to Pakistan, he added. "We would also take action against any publication abroad if they level any allegations without any proof, even if we have to file a suit abroad." Pakistan last month published the findings of a judicial inquiry into allegations of match-fixing against Pakistani players who took part in the team's defeats in the 1999 World Cup held in England. "The commission directed us that in future any accuser without any proof should be taken to court and players should also sue the accusers," Zia said. Cricket in general and the Pakistani game in particular has been haunted by the match-fixing controversy since Australian trio Shane Warne, Tim May and Mark Waugh alleged that Pakistan's Salim Mallik offered them bribes to under-perform in 1994-95. Mallik, a former South African captain, the late Hansie Cronje, and former Indian captain Mohammad Azharuddin were banned for life on match-fixing charges. Pakistan's present captain Waqar Younis, Wasim Akram, Saeed Anwar, Mushtaq Ahmed, Inzamam-ul-Haq and Akram Raza have all received fines, along with Australia's Warne and Mark Waugh. The controversy forced the game's governing body, the International Cricket Council, to form a high-level anti-corruption body. Former captain Majid Khan, fast bowler Sarfraz Nawaz and South African official Ali Bacher alleged Pakistan fixed games in the 1999 World Cup but failed to substantiate their allegations.

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