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Pakistan intend to complete England tour despite probe

August 29, 2010 20:49 IST
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Pakistan intend to complete their England cricket tour despite a police investigation into corruption allegations involving the fourth Test which concluded at Lord's on Sunday.

British police said on Saturday they had arrested a 35-year-old man on suspicion of conspiracy to defraud bookmakers. The arrest followed a report in a Sunday newspaper that Pakistan players had been bribed to fix incidents in the match.

"As far as I am concerned the One-Day series is on, we are moving to the west country and we will play all the One-Dayers and the T20s," Pakistan manager Yawar Saeed said at Lord's.

Pakistan are scheduled to play seven One-Day Internationals against England starting in Cardiff next Sunday.

On Saturday, Yawar said police had interviewed captain Salman Butt, pace bowlers Mohammad Aamer and Mohammad Asif and wicketkeeper Kamran Akmal at the team's London hotel.

In an interview with Sky Sports on Sunday, Yawar said police had confiscated mobile phones belonging to Butt, Aamer and Asif as part of the investigation.

The News of the World report said Aamer and Asif had bowled pre-arranged no-balls on the opening day of the Test last Thursday.

Eighteen-year-old Aamer, who took five wickets in the second innings in the third Test at the Oval and six in England's only innings at Lord's, was named Pakistan's man-of-the-series.


Pakistan Sports Minister Ijaz Hussain Jakhrani promised life bans for any Pakistan cricketer found guilty of match-fixing.

"We are waiting for a detailed report from the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) and if any players are found guilty of being involved in fixing they will be banned for life," Jakhrani said on Sunday.

Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari has called for a detailed report from the PCB. Yawar said he would give a report to PCB chairman Ijaz Butt, who is in London, on Sunday.

"As far as the allegations are concerned I would still call them allegations," Yawar said. "It's not for me within 24 hours to pass a judgment whether they are true or not."

Butt, who assumed the captaincy when Shahid Afridi retired from Test cricket after the first Test against Australia, said he had no intention of resigning.

"Definitely we have given our best, but the conditions have been difficult for the batsmen and this has been a very inexperienced team," he said. "I would say that everybody in this team has given 100 percent."

England captain Andrew Strauss, whose team completed a 3-1 series victory with a win by an innings and 225 runs, said his team's mood had been sombre on Sunday morning.

"Cricket is in the headlines for the worst of reasons," he said.

The International Cricket Council (ICC) said in a statement that none of the cricket authorities would be making any comment while the matter was being investigated by the police.

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