Text messages reveal fixing scam

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Published: Thursday, November 3, 2011, 13:23 [IST]
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SMS reveals spot-fixing

London, Nov 3: Spot fixing has been the most sensational topic of discussion over the past few weeks. Interesting developments have led to a lot of curiosity amongst people. The latest development being the British police' work that has managed to capture the attention. British police has unearthed evidence of spot fixing by Pakistani players throughout their tour of England last year.

The results were not put forth before the jury at Southwark Crown Court which found Salman Butt and Mohammed Asif guilty of spot fixing.

The evidence reveal the texts or short messages sent by the agent Mazhar Majeed to fixers around the globe for fixing two test matches against Australia and the test series between England and Pakistan. Though he has implicated Butt and wicket-keeper Kamran Akmal in a series of messages, the judge ruled out the evidence and termed it inadmissible.

The Head of the International Cricket Council's Anti Corruption Unit, Ravi Sawani said that the trial betting syndicates were run by mafia and underworld dons in Mumbai and Dubai who make millions from India's illegal betting industry.

Majeed, trying to be smart, had deleted all the message to avoid trouble. But Scotland yard detectives managed to retireve the messages and also found that there were negotiations between Majeed and fixers in Britain, India and Dubai.

The crux of the negiotiations, the text messages discuss fixing 'brackets' - suggesting scoring rate during a 10 over span including the pitch conditions. There is one instance wherein the arrangements were called off just because Butt had been dismissed by England.

According to reports, text messages reveal the conversation between a suspected fixer Raj and Majeed. Raj had sent a message to Majeed about Butt becoming the Test captain and had also asked about the conditions for the second test against Australia at Headingley. The message read, "Congratulations on the captaincy of Butt", and "What is the wicket like? Enough grass left?"

Similarly another transcript reveals that a UK based fixer had asked "Is your Pakistan man ready for a small one tomorrow?" Majeed's text suggest that he had also asked Raj if he wanted a spot-fix arranged for the first day of the Test, and wrote, "Shall I prepare anything tomorrow?"

With such intense issues up the ladder, scams cropping up, the future of such cricketers appear to be slim and also suggests that it's high-time the governing body needs to take action and work on stopping corruption by creating awareness and also trapping the illegal betting industry sooner than later. Else, it's definitely going to hamper the game of cricket.


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