The 3rd Test of the ongoing Ashes series between Australia and England at the WACA ground in Perth has been rocked by spot fixing allegations made by British newspaper The Sun.
The famous British newspaper alleged that two big bookmakers including an Indian by the name of “Mr. Big”, offered them all the details of already fixed periods of play during the Test match. Betting on the given periods of play could earn the party huge returns.
He claimed to be working with an Australian bookmaker by the name of “Mr. Silent” and one of them claimed to get help from former and current cricketers including a World Cup winning all-rounder. The tabloid said their undercover reporters were asked for up to £140,000 ($187,000, 158,000 euros) to “spot fix” markets such as the exact amount of runs scored in an over.
“Before match. I will tell you this over, this runs and then you have to put all the bets on that over,” one of the bookmakers was quoted as saying.
Tomorrow's front page: The Sun has smashed a multi-million pound plot to fix the third Ashes cricket test pic.twitter.com/G0tkRUjlsy— The Sun (@TheSun) December 13, 2017
No English or Australian player was named considering their involvement in the whole scam.
The ICC has released a statement saying that this whole matter is of grave concern and an investigation has been started.
“From my initial assessment of the material, there is no evidence, either from The Sun or via our own intelligence, to suggest the current Test match has been corrupted. At this stage of the investigation, there is no indication that any players in this Test have been in contact with the alleged fixers,” said the ICC’s anti-corruption chief Alex Marshall.
Cricket Australia Chief James Sutherland released a statement saying “there was no reason to suspect that this Test match or indeed the Ashes series as a whole is subject to corrupt activities”.
The England Cricket Board too released a statement after the revelation of spot fixing saying “ ECB work closely with the ICC and their Anti-Corruption unit to protect the integrity of the international game . We are aware of these allegations and there is no suggestion that any of the England team is involved in any way."
The Sun newspaper conducted an undercover investigation for four months, filming the Indian pair of bookies in hotels in New Delhi and Dubai.
According to the newspapers, the Indian bookies claimed that they could get the involved players to follow pre written scripts, like amount of runs to be scored in a session, when to throw their wickets and even influence the decision on what a team would do on winning the toss.
“I will give you work in Ashes Test. Session runs. Maybe day one, two, three. We have two session work, one session costs 60 lakh rupees (£ 69,000), two sessions 120 lakh rupees (£ 138,000),” it cited one of the men as saying. “If you are interested (we) will talk to the Silent Man.”
The Indian bookies also bragged that they could corrupt games in lucrative T20 leagues like the BBL and the IPL.