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'Tainted' Pakistan players face life threat from militants

Source: ANI
August 30, 2010 12:42 IST
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Pakistan cricketers, who are allegedly involved in the match-fixing scandal, fear for their lives amid warnings that militants have put a price on their heads, according to security experts.

Reacting angrily to the match-fixing allegations, fans greeted the Pakistan cricket team with boos, jeers and pelted the team bus with rotten tomatoes as they used the stadium's back gate after crashing to a humiliating defeat by England in the fourth and final Test at Lord's on Sunday.

- What is spot-fixing?

London-based bookie Mazhar Majeed was arrested on Saturday on suspicion of conspiracy to defraud bookmakers over an alleged betting scam involving a few Pakistan players.

British tabloid The News of the World claimed that it paid Majeed for advance details of when three no balls would be played in the Lord's Test 

Police also questioned three Pakistan players over the alleged scam and detectives confiscated mobile phones of pacers Mohammad Amir, Mohammad Asif and captain Salman Butt.

The security experts say the team could be the target of a backlash from fans after match-fixing allegations, and fear the boos and cheers the squad got in London on Saturday is nothing compared to what could be in store for them in Pakistan, where their lives could be on the line, the Daily Star reports.

One security expert warned: "There are worries it's not going to be safe for the team to go back. Millions of people here have been looking to them for relief from the devastating floods. People were weeping with joy when they won the last Test. But that has disappeared now and the happiness has turned to anger."

The security around the team was beefed up on Sunday after allegations that players in the team would throw a match for a fee.

Meanwhile, former captains from England, Australia and Pakistan condemned the situation and called for the guilty players to be banned for life.

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Source: ANI