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Sunday, July 28, 2013

match-fixing ! suspicion in Pak V WI - India beats Zimbabwe

The International Cricket calendar is most active – India is playing Zimbabwe; Pak is in West Indies; Australia is getting drubbed in England ~ South Africa is finding it too difficult in Srilanka……….. but when there is so much of game, off-field activity is garnering more news as there is fresh spectre of corruption with the recent one-day international series between the West Indies and Pakistan set to be investigated over allegations of wrongdoing.  Daily Mail and many others reported that suspicious betting patterns were identified during the low-profile five-match series, which concluded on Thursday, while unusually slow run-rates during certain overs followed by bursts of high scoring have ‘set alarm bells ringing’, according to industry experts. Concerns have been raised, in particular, around the tied third match of the series played in St Lucia a week ago on Friday, as well as the final game, which resulted in a last-ball win for Pakistan on Thursday. The second ODI, which saw Pakistan fail to score a run off the bat in the first five overs after being set 233 to win, is also being looked into. One betting website reported unusually large sums of money — said to run into several millions of pounds — being wagered between innings on a tied result during the third ODI after the West Indies were set 230 to win from 50 overs. Field placings for the final over, when No 11 Jason Holder and fellow tail-ender Kemar Roach crashed 14 off six balls from Wahab Riaz, will be scrutinised by officers of the ICC Anti-Corruption and Security Unit (ACSU), along with a failed run-out bid off the last delivery.

So at this juncture, if it is a close match, suspicions will be rung………. Not at Harare though as India sauntered to an easy win.  After restricting Zimbabwe to 183 with Amit Mishra taking 4 for 47; India reached home with loss of 3 wickets.  Teams winning the toss have enjoyed a huge advantage in this series, and today was no different as Virat Kohli called correctly and watched his bowlers wipe out Zimbabwe for 183. A quick end to the Zimbabwe innings seemed imminent but the bottom three weren't about to throw their wickets away.

This is how Cricinfo describes the chase : “Faced with a small target and a placid pitch, India weren't too troubled during the chase, and there were never any doubts over which side was heading for victory. Rohit Sharma played a few eye-catching strokes before falling cheaply for the third time in the series.”  Can you imagine how much he made in that innings studded with eye-catching strokes ?

The PCB has expressed concern over allegations of fixing raised in the media with regard to the recently concluded West Indies-Pakistan ODI series. "The PCB is obviously extremely concerned at the recent allegations of fixing reported in the media with regard to recently concluded ODI series between Pakistan and West Indies," the official  is quoted as saying.  They can learn from their neighbours………….. there have been match fixing allegations in BPL as also IPL…..

Back home in India, a two-member panel has found "no evidence of any wrongdoing" against Raj Kundra, co-owner of Rajasthan Royals, the Rajasthan Royals franchise, and India Cements, the owner of Chennai Super Kings. The panel, comprising former high-court judges, was formed to look into the involvement of the owners of two IPL franchises in corruption during the tournament. The BCCI working committee met in Kolkata on Sunday and Niranjan Shah, a BCCI vice-president, said that the report submitted by the two retired judges, T Jayaram Chouta and R Balasubramanian, will now be forwarded to the IPL governing council. The investigation into Gurunath Meiyappan, a top Super Kings official and BCCI president N Srinivasan's son-in-law, India Cements, Kundra and Rajasthan Royals' owner Jaipur IPL Pvt Ltd was sanctioned after Meiyappan was arrested by Mumbai Police and Kundra reportedly confessed to betting in IPL matches. So, now the path is cleared for Mr Srinivasan to assume office back again.

Now getting back to Indian Cricket, Rohit Sharma made 14 off 21 balls and how many eye-catching strokes could he have played ……… … somehow the media, commentators and … are heaping praises calling him great talent et.al;  It would ever remain a mystery as to how he played against England at home after scoring – 5,0,0,4,4 at Srilanka and 4 against Pak at Chennai.. 17 in 6 innings and still he got a chance.  From 2012 on, he has played slightly less than 30 matches aggregating 684 runs at an average of 25 approx and yet he is chosen over Ajinkya Rahana who made so many runs in England when everyone else failed and immensely talented Cheteshwar Pujara… Murali Vijay who is dubbed a failure did not play a single ODI in 2012 ~ this year he made 30 and 27 in 2 matches at WI Tri nation series..

With regards – S. Sampathkumar

28th July 2013. 

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