Latif says delay in live broadcasts may curb fixing

"I guarantee that even a delay of 30 seconds in live telecast of matches will put an end to the spot-fixing," Latif told AFP.Latif, 41, announced his retirement in protest over match-fixing reports during Pakistan's tour of South Africa and Zimbabwe in 1995.
He also testified against his teammates at a judicial inquiry between 1998 and 2000, which culminated in life bans on two players and fines on six more.

Latif has criticised the International Cricket Council (ICC) and its Anti-Corruption and Safety Unit (ACSU) since three Pakistani players were implicated over spot-fixing last month.

Test captain Salman Butt and bowlers Mohammad Asif and Mohammad Aamir are under investigation by British police and the ICC for alleged spot-fixing during last month's Lord's Test against England.

Latif, who resigned as wicket-keeping coach at Pakistan's national cricket academy Tuesday over his statements on fixing, said the ICC would have to convince its television partner ESPN-Star to delay the broadcast.

"The ICC will have to bear the loss as the media companies would possibly disagree with the idea, but I can guarantee spot-fixing will die with delayed telecast of matches," said Latif.

Spot-fixing is a betting scam in which a player agrees to perform in a certain way at specified moments of the game by pre-arrangement with a bookmaker.Televised cricket matches, even of lesser significance, attract huge betting in India and the Gulf, with bets placed on every delivery.

"The ICC has been forcing the players to refrain from this practice (fixing) but actually the laws are providing the players with a window of opportunity," Latif said.
"I have also suggested some changes in the law which can curb spot-fixing, like power plays in the one-day and Twenty20 matches should be finished," said Latif, now the coach of Afghanistan's national team.

Power plays are rules restricting fielding in some overs in one-day and Twenty20 matches, to give a temporary advantage to the batting side.Latif also claimed that some national teams sidelined players who turned down offers from bookmakers.

"Besides the fact that education of the players is important, the system also needs to be revamped," he said.

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