Pandurang Salgaonkar –Pitch curator at Maharashtra Cricket Association (MCA) has been suspended for six months by the International Cricket Council (ICC) on Tuesday (6 March).
ICC has taken the decision against Salgaonkar for failing to report an approach of pitch manipulation, ahead of an India-New Zealand ODI in Pune in October last year.
India Today leveled allegations of corruption on Salgaonkar but no evidence was found of him and ‘therefore no charges were laid against him on that basis’.
ICC said in a statement, “Salgaonkar was charged with a failure to report an approach but no evidence was found of him actually having been engaged in corruption and therefore no charges were laid against him on that basis.”
According to a report in Times of India, ICC General Manager - Anti-Corruption Alex Marshall said, “We have carried out an extensive investigation based on the allegations made by India Today and the material they shared with us. I am satisfied that Salgaonkar has no case to answer on the broad allegations of corruption made by India Today. However, as he is bound by the ICC Anti-Corruption Code as a participant of the sport, he has been charged with breaching section 2.4.4 of the Code for his failure to report an approach to engage in corrupt conduct.”
He signed off by saying, “Salgaonkar has accepted that he has committed the offence and has received a six-month suspension, which has been backdated to 25 October 2017, being the date he was internally suspended by MCA, and he will therefore be free to resume his duties on 24 April 2018.”
Meanwhile, Salgaonkar told PTI, “I have been humble servant of cricket and have served the game over last 50 years in various capacity. For publicity and attention, undue allegations were made against me. I have accepted the judgement that I have failed on reporting to ACU. That was primarily due to the fact that my wife was in critical condition and was hospitalized one day prior to the match and also my involvement in preparation for the match, which had mentally and physically over occupied. However, I accept and respect the decision of ICC.”
He concluded, “This was an extreme and unnecessary allegation from India Today and has impacted me mentally. I am thankful to ICC for being non-discriminatory and conducting an extensive enquiry about the allegations and bringing true picture in-front of everyone.”