The International Cricket Council said yesterday (18) it has launched an investigation into claims of a new betting scandal involving the Pakistan national team.
The allegations, which emerged Saturday in the British tabloid The Sun, relate to the third One-Day International between England and Pakistan, held in London on Friday.
“A source informed The Sun newspaper that a certain scoring pattern would emerge during certain stages of the match and, broadly speaking, that information appeared to be correct,” ICC Chief Executive Haroon Lorgat said in a statement.
“We therefore feel it is incumbent upon us to launch a full enquiry into this particular game, although it is worth pointing out at this stage that we are not stating as fact that anything untoward has occurred,” Lorgat said. “Only in the fullness of the investigation can that be established.”
The Sun reported “illegal bookies in India and Dubai apparently knew in advance what would happen” during the game so they could make bets. The paper said its undercover team was able to pass details to ICC inspectors before the match began at the Oval cricket ground in south London.
“Cricket chiefs then watched as Pakistan’s score mirrored the target that bookies had been told in advance by a fixer,” The Sun reported.
It is not thought the overall result was fixed — only scoring rates in parts of Pakistan’s innings, the paper said. It said the investigation centers on a person “within the team camp” who is believed to be the ringleader, taking money from bookies and ensuring their orders are carried out.
Pakistan won the game by 23 runs.
The claims follow a separate alleged scam, also involving the Pakistan team during its ongoing tour of England. The tabloid News of the World reported that Pakistan players deliberately bowled “no balls,” or fouls, at specific points in a game with England in late August, and that the alleged ringleader of the scam made 150,000 pounds (about $230,000).
London’s Metropolitan Police have questioned four players over the allegations. They passed their evidence in that case Friday to prosecutors, who will decide whether to press charges.
The ICC provisionally suspended three of the players questioned by police and charged them with various offenses under the council’s anti-corruption code.
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