ICC for appropriate action

Twenty20 matches, ODI series to continue as per schedule

ICC for appropriate action

In the eye of storm: (From left) Mohammad Aamer, Salman Butt and Mohammad Asif snapped while leaving their hotel in London on Monday. AP

“It is the desire of the ICC, England and Pakistan that the game is continued,” Pawar said after a teleconference with top ICC officials, PCB Chairman Ejaz Butt and ECB chairman Giles Clarke.

Pakistan and England square off in two Twenty20 Internationals (September 5 and 7) before playing five ODIs from September 10-22.

Pawar said besides the London police, Anti-Corruption Unit of the ICC is also preparing a report. The world body will take action after studying both the investigations and a report from the PCB.

“I had a detailed discussion with Giles Clarke, Ejaz Butt, ICC vice-president Alan Issac, CEO Haroon Lorgat, anti-corruption wing in-charge Ravi Sawani and a few officials of ICC.
We discussed in depth the Pakistani players’ issue. One thing is that the British Police have not completed their investigation. Neither has any player been arrested,” he said.

“Until and unless the British authorities complete investigation, which we hope will be done in two-three days, and establish there is prima facie case it is difficult for the PCB to take appropriate action,” he said.

“ICC is waiting for the British police to complete investigation. ACSU is also looking into the details. It is also preparing a report in 2-3 days. The report by British Police and ACSU will give us a proper picture. This information we hope will lead us to take appropriate action if required,” he added.

Pawar said PCB chief Butt will submit a confidential report to Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari regarding the ‘spot-fixing’ allegations.

“As per our information, PCB president is preparing a confidential report which will be submitted to the President and Prime Minster. He wants guidance from the country’s leadership,” said Pawar.

Earlier in the day, Pawar termed the ‘spot-fixing’ allegations involving Pakistani players as serious. “If this is established, there will be quite a serious view that will be taken by the Pakistan Cricket Board, the England Cricket Board and the ICC,” he said.

“I am absolutely confident that both Boards will  never encourage protecting anybody who has done a wrong thing. Whatever the allegations, the allegations themselves are quite serious,” he added.

Asked about the Indian bookies about whom Mazhar Majeed talks about in the sting operation, Pawar said he was not aware of this. “I don’t know. The BCCI has to take a view on that. The BCCI is one of our members and I am sure if any serious matter is there, the BCCI will take action,” he said.

“I can’t come to a conclusion based on a video,” he reasoned.

Tainted to be sent back?
Meanwhile, Pakistan could release any player(s) under investigation for alleged corruption from their squad for the one-day series, a source in the team said.

The source, who declined to be identified, said PCB chairman Ijaz Butt, manager Yawar Saeed and one-day captain Shahid Afridi were scheduled to meet in London on Monday.

“The meeting on Monday is important because obviously some players in the squad who are not under investigation are feeling uncomfortable with the whole situation leading up to the one-day series,” the source said.

“The prospect of releasing the players who are under investigation from the one-day squad and replacing them is under consideration and will be discussed at the meeting."
The source said the PCB and the team management were also concerned about the mental state of the players.

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