Investigators slow in match-fixing probe: Gibbs

Published: Thursday, August 31, 2006, 23:53 [IST]
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Johannesburg: Herschelle Gibbs is livid at being faced with the prospect of the match-fixing scandal re-opening again when he comes to India to participate in the Champions Trophy and has accused the Indian investigators of ''not playing their part'' and being slow in their probe.

''Well, I think the particular guy that's driving the whole thing is quite a hard sort of guy, and he refuses to let himself be dictated to. He wants to do it on his terms, and that's it,'' Gibbs told the Sports Illustrated here.

''They haven't really played their part. You know, we've asked them many a time to come question me on neutral territory, and they refuse. So it's not like I haven't made the effort. It's them being hard. That's it,'' he added.

The South African opener, who has agreed to be in India for the showpiece event in October-November, said he was fed up with the matter stretching on and wanted to put an end to the saga at the earliest.

Gibbs blamed the Indian investigators of being slow in their probe and said he was prepared to answer the same set of 18 questions which he responded to in front of the King Commission here.

''I've got the 18 questions that they want to ask me. It's basically exactly the same stuff that I answered at the King Commission. I'll just be repeating myself,'' he said.

Gibbs will be accompanied by his lawyer during the trip and said he has already told Cricket South Africa that he would be prepared to be questioned at the team hotel on arrival.

''I am going to go. But my lawyer's coming with me. I've put forward a proposal to Cricket South Africa, which was discussed on Thursday. I've proposed that my lawyer and I will travel with the team, and once we get to the hotel, they can then do the questioning at the hotel,'' he elaborated.

The opener, along with spinner Nicky Boje, came into the spotlight in the match-fixing scandal in 2000 after the then South African captain Hansie Cronje confessed to taking bribes for fixing matches.

Cronje was banned for life for his involvement in the scandal and the former captain died in a plane crash while serving the ban.

Gibbs and Boje, however, got away with minor fines and short bans.

The Delhi Police wants to question the duo but they have avoided coming to India since the controversy first started. Gibbs said he was prepared for questioning after a long time as he would have his teammates around to cope with the pressure.

''It just gives me more of a peace of mind, you know, that I'm traveling with the team. So I'll be going with everybody -- the squad, the management -- and that's about 25 people,'' he said.

Speaking of Nicky Boje's refusal to play in India, Gibbs said the spinner's situation was different from his.

''You see, Nicky's situation is slightly different, because I don't think he's going to be playing in India again. He's not going to be in the squad. So he doesn't really have much. for him it's more a case of clearing his name than anything else,'' Gibbs said.

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