31/08/2010

Pakistan Cricketers Face Punishment If Guilty

The Pakistan cricketers at the centre of a match-fixing row face "prompt and decisive action" if they are found guilty, the sport's ruling body said.

The International Cricket Council's anti-corruption unit said that they would "not tolerate corruption in this great game" and they are preparing a report, while police also investigate the claims.

The Pakistan Cricket Board is also conducting its own enquiry.

Meanwhile, it has also been reported that the four players at the centre of the claims are unlikely to play again on the current England tour.

The news follows allegations made by the News of the World that members of the Pakistan team were involved in match-fixing. The story in the paper claimed that two fast bowlers - Mohammad Amir and Mohammad Asif - had agreed to bowl no balls - foul deliveries during the fourth Test against England at Lord's last week.

A reporter from the newspaper had posed as a businessman who paid £150,000 for the information.

Police have questioned both players, along with captain Salman Butt and wicketkeeper Kamran Akmal. It is understood that Akmal is no longer part of their investigation. Cricket agent Mazhar Majeed has been released on police bail after being arrested on Saturday in connection with the allegations. Three other people have also been arrested in connection with the case - a man and a woman, both aged 35 from Croydon, and a 49-year-old man from the Wembley area. HM Revenue & Customs arrested them as part of their investigation into money-laundering.

The Pakistan team's tour is set to continue.

(KMcA/GK)

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