By Jo Anne Bladd
Australian cricket legend says right decision was made after Pakistan trio found guilty of spot-fixing
The recent banning of three Pakistani cricketers for corruption has been good for the game, Australia cricket legend Steve Waugh said on Monday.
"Look, I don't know whether the penalties given out were too harsh or not, but the important thing is that the right decision was made," Waugh told Arabian Business at the Laureus Sports Awards in Abu Dhabi.
Waugh captained the Australian Test cricket side during one of its greatest eras during the 1990s.
Waugh said everyone in Australia had been "very disappointed" by the recent Ashes series defeat to arch-rivals England, but added there was now cause for optimism.
"In terms of the World Cup, I actually think Australia have a better chance than England. England prepared themselves so heavily for the Ashes that they now have a lot of injuries, whereas Australia are peaking at the right time," he said.
Pakistan cricketers Salman Butt, Mohammed Asif and Mohammed Amir were on Saturday found guilty of spot-fixing by the International Cricket Council, after a six-day hearing in Doha.
Captain Salman Butt received a 10-year ban from the game, effectively ending his career, while fast bowlers Mohammed Asif and Mohammed Amir were given seven- and five-year bans respectively.
The ICC had charged the trio in September after a British tabloid accused them of accepting cash to bowl deliberate no-balls during Pakistan’s tour of the UK last year.
Exact information on when no-balls are delivered during a match can be used by bookies on the international gambling circuit.
Britain’s Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) last week announced that all three players, along with alleged match-fixer Mazhar Majeed, would also face criminal charges in the UK.
The decisions are likely to end the international careers of both Butt and Asif, who are 26 and 29, respectively.
However, 18-year-old Mohammed Amir will be hoping to return to the sport after receiving the minimum ban. Amir has also confirmed that he will be appealing the decision.
These guys are not the first and definitely not the last for spot fixing or match fixing. Gambling and cricket go hand in hand. Has anyone ever wondered how and why this sport has become so cash-rich in recent years? A lot of the players do it, but the vast majority don't get caught.
Tough luck guys... you did it, accepted the risk and got caught. Still, you made more money than the average middle class well educated family in Pakistan.
Bottom line... well done ICC and PCB. The dirt that tarnished our image is gone. Lets now begin playing real cricket...FINALLY!!!
Yes corruption is bad, but this is all a ploy to keep two of the best bowlers in the world out of international cricket. England and the Indian mafia are behind this or else you will find many others who are corrupt in ALL the teams....As for the manner in which they were trapped, that in itself should be condemned!
"Indian mafia behind the scene" That's good observation. So shall we say Pakistan mafia was behind when Moh'd Azaruddin was given life ban due to same reason?
Oh wise one!
If you do have any evidence to support your claim that it is the English and Indian mafia behind this mess, please provide the evidence to the concerned law enforcement authority. If you have none and are just blindly venting out your fury, I would request you stop.
Banning few players is a start, Pakistan's cricket record of last 10 years must be erased, the probe of Pakistan's cricket coach's suspicious death must be looked at again.
Best bowler, good bowler, bad bowler, who cares: if you cheat, you go. No conspiracy at all, just the law and the rules of the game. The next batch to get caught should be dealt with even more harshly, no matter where they are from.... in the name of Hansie Cronje
@Pervaiz - Reply to you question why this sport has become cash rich - In recent years (post World Cup wins by India & Pakistan) there is a large (middle class) population which watches telecasts of cricket. There are companies who feel that this provides them to market their products to large audiences, repeatedly over a period of time. Hence they pay huge amounts of money to get market their products & services. This money goes to the respective boards and professionals associated with the game. Hence the money.....no consipracy theories please....I am sure you will not spend time glued to the TV for an international match of Kabaddi....
Conspiracy theorists are having a field day. Some people have a habit of blaming everyone except the people who are directly responsible for it. Why are you focusing on "the manner in which they were trapped" - focus on why they have been corrupt and take corrective and preventive action.
@Bing... yes you are right... its only through totally honest money that this game has become so cash-rich. The probe against the Indian IPL for money laundering etc was just a farce, going by your naive thought processes. Yes Bing, you are right. No one is corrupt in the international cricket world. Its all well and heard earned money. You are right.
Yes Mr Mehta, you wish...!!! How typical.