15 Oct

A player, featuring in the ongoing National T20 Cup has reported a "corrupt approach" during the tournament to the Pakistan Cricket Board's anti-corruption unit. The PCB has engaged the Federal Investigating Agency (FIA) to probe further. ESPNcricinfo understands that the player in question has not represented Pakistan in international cricket.

According to a PCB statement, an unnamed player reported an approach from a suspected bookmaker during the tournament in Rawalpindi. "I have spoken with the player to compliment and thank him for following the PCB Anti-Corruption Code and reporting the approach to the anti-corruption officer," the PCB Anti-Corruption and Security director Lt Col (Retd) Asif Mahmood said. "Following the report, the PCB Anti-Corruption Unit (ACU) carried out its own probe and unearthed some sensitive information, which has been forwarded to the FIA, which has the required expertise, resources, capabilities, and powers to investigate such matters.

"As we cannot jeopardise an ongoing investigation, it will be inappropriate for us to share any specifics of the approach. However, the PCB as a responsible member of the International Cricket Council will continue to keep the game's administrative body abreast of the progress in investigations as part of our information-sharing approach."

Before the event, PCB had carried out mandatory anti-corruption lectures reminding players of their responsibility, and guided players thoroughly about the code. This has been a regular exercise at domestic and international series since 2010 when the PCB was forced to revise its code of conduct for players with special emphasis on anti-corruption. The PCB has also made it mandatory for players to have their agents approved by the board. The PCB had also implemented education programmes for cricketers to create awareness about match-fixing and set up an Integrity Committee to look into issues of corruption and doping.

After the 2010 spot-fixing issues the PCB has mandated a zero-tolerance policy towards corruption in cricket. Last year, the PCB under Ehsan Mani offered a draft to the federal government on how to curb the illegal betting in the country and urged the government of Pakistan on providing legislation to criminalise corruption in sports.

"We are all aware that the game is at risk due to a small number of corrupters who try to entice cricketers for their personal gains and benefit," the PCB said, "But there is also no doubt that we can collectively defeat these people if the players strictly abide by the anti-corruption protocols and continue to report approaches to the anti-corruption officers."


John Stephenson


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