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Players were involved in match-fixing: Pak panel

March 15, 2010 19:13 IST

A parliamentary panel on Monday made the stunning disclosure that some Pakistani cricketers were involved in match-fixing during the recent tour of Australia, but declined to name the players involved.

The three-member sub-committee of the Senate Committee on Sports made the revelation after a meeting with Pakistan Cricket Board officials, including its chairman Ejaz Butt, at the Gaddafi stadium in Lahore.

"The sub-committee was briefed on the tour with documents, and there are verbal, video and solid proofs that one or more players were involved in match-fixing," said Haroon Akhtar, a member of the sub-committee.

Recently PCB chairman Ejaz Butt had denied there was any fixing in Australia, where Pakistan lost all the matches, after admitting the same in a press conference.

Changing his stand, after a furore was created, Butt said he referred to old players and not the current crop.

The sub-committee is headed by Ghaffar Qureshi and its third member is Tahir Mashadi.

Akhtar, son of Lt Gen Akhtar Abdur Rehman who died in a plane crash with former military ruler Gen Zia ul-Haq in 1988, had earlier assailed PCB for not making public the report on the basis of which action was recently taken against several cricketers.

However, Akhtar indicated a change in his stance on Monday.

"The PCB has done good work in its investigation into the issue and it deserves credit."

The members of the sub-committee, who declined to name the cricketers involved in match-fixing, said more time is needed for further investigation into the matter as some non-cricketers could be also be involved.

"Till the completion of the entire investigation, it is not appropriate to disclose the names of any of the players involved," Mashadi said.

Mashadi said the proof gathered by authorities indicated different methods were used to fix matches.

"There are indications that something is wrong as when a player is quite capable of scoring 50 runs but scores only 10, or the player drops easy catches or plays unnecessary lofted shots," he said.

Asked if any players involved in match-fixing were included in the recently announced Twenty 20 team, the senators only said that they had recommended to the PCB that such players should not be selected.

They refused to reply when they were asked if Shoaib Malik and Rana Navid-ul Hasan, who have been banned for a year, were involved in match-fixing.

Asked why the PCB is not disclosing the names of players involved in match-fixing if it has proof against them, Akhtar said, "Let the committee and the PCB complete the entire investigation."

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