Islamabad, Feb 10: Terming the Anti-Corruption Tribunal"s decision to impose lengthy bans on Salman Butt, Mohammad Asif and Mohammad Aamer on spot-fixing charges as a “reasonable verdict", Pakistan cricket great Javed Miandad has urged the trio to assist in purging corruption from the game.
Miandad, Director General of the Pakistan Cricket Board, said the banned trio should now assist the International Cricket Council and the PCB to identify the people involved in the rigging and betting markets who were harming the game.
“If the players identify the bad elements in the game, only then we can fight with this spot-fixing menace," the Daily Times quoted Miandad, as telling a news agency. “It (spot-fixing) can"t be finished if the players do not cooperate," he added.
Butt, Asif and Aamer were banned for a maximum of ten, seven and five years respectively after they were proven guilty of spot-fixing during last year''s tour of England, the former two receiving sanctions with a five-year and a two-year suspension period respectively.
The tribunal also directed the trio to participate in an anti-corruption education program under the auspices of the PCB.
“It"s a good program, but it"s the responsibility of the players to be honest because they are the ones who are directly approached by bad guys," said Miandad, adding, “I"m sure no one has the guts to buy a cricketer without the consent of the player himself."
The PCB official said that spot-fixing posed a greater threat to the integrity of the game than match fixing because it provided more opportunities to fix betting markets, as there could only one win-loss result per match, but there could be a vast number of bets on events within games.
“In a 50-overs-a-side game players could commit an intentional mistake not once but 600 times," said Miandad.
“In match-fixing it"s a matter of win or lose, but in this spot-fixing players commit intentional mistakes one after the other," he added.
Miandad said it was difficult to predict about the future of the three players, but added that the tribunal"s decision to hand them lengthy bans was a “reasonable verdict."
“It could have been more severe, but it will send a strong message to players all over the world," he maintained.