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Match-fixing more widespread than what public thinks: Chappell

Last updated on: July 5, 2013 16:09 IST

Match-fixing more widespread than what public thinks: Chappell

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Convinced that match-fixing is much more widespread than what is already in public domain, former Australian captain Ian Chappell says he uses his commentary to drop subtle hints of wrongdoing whenever he suspects anything fishy during a match.

Chappell, who captained an Australia team described as one of the best in history, said he had altered his cricket commentary in the past to hint at any "dodgy" practice during games.

"I don't want people to look back at me and say, 'Well, he was hot on fixing but he didn't do anything about it'," Chappell told The Guardian.

"I've done what I think I have to do with the information that I've been given. If ever I go to court to talk about this and the judge says 'Well, you didn't say anything about it at the time,' I can say to the judge, 'You go back and listen to my commentary there, and if you listen very closely there's an indication there that I wasn't happy with what was going on'," he said.

Image: Ian Chappell
Photographs: Will Burgess/Reuters

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'Very bad captaincy or it was dodgy captaincy'

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Chappell said the Pakistan-Australia Test match at Sydney in 2010, which was investigated and later cleared by the ICC, could have been fixed. He questioned the now-retired and the then Pakistan captain Mohammed Yousuf's tactics in the match which his team lost.

"Take your pick. That was either very, very bad captaincy or it was dodgy captaincy," he said.

Chappell said it would be naive to think that any team in the world has remained immune to the menace. "Match fixing in cricket is much more widespread than what the public thinks," Chappell said.

"When all the fixing allegations have been going on in the cricket world, the first thing that people say to you in Australia is that 'none of our guys are involved are they?' think you're a very game person to say that any team is not involved. It's pretty widespread," he added.



Image: Mohammad Yousuf
Photographs: Philip Brown/Reuters

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Spot-fixing scandal

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International cricket has been rocked by one fixing scandal after another in the past few years. Three Pakistani cricketers were banned for accepting bribes to bowl deliberate no-balls in the Lord's Test against England in August 2010.

This year the police in India began investigating allegations of spot-fixing in the Indian Premier League.

In response to Chappell's comments, a spokesman for Cricket Australia said, "Cricket Australia has an anti-corruption and security unit to oversee and maintain the integrity of Australia's domestic competitions."

"As well as monitoring domestic Australian matches, players and officials, the unit administers extensive education programs for all Australian and overseas players and officials involved in Australia's domestic cricket competitions. 

"While we are never complacent, we are confident there are no issues of that nature in Australia and we will continue to do everything necessary to ensure the integrity of Australian cricket."


Image: Salman Butt and Mohammad Aamer
Photographs: Toby Melville/Reuters

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