PAGE OF SHAME series : A timeline of Match and Spot Fixing activities
London | 3 November 2012 | Clip-Dex Page of Match Fixing Videos
What are the sequence of events in the colourful and recent history of activities that has resulted in match-fixing? How are the players undermining the entire essence of cricket in an ever increasing frequency of scandals? This article lists out the timeline of match fixing, spot fixing and the related allegations that has tainted cricket.
Australia were in a seemingly unassailable position in the Headingley Test match when they batted first, scored 401 for nine declared having skittled out England for 174. They then had England at 135 for seven in their second innings. At this point, Dennis Lillee and Rodney Marsh bet against their own team, backing England at the odds of 500 to 1 to win. Then came Ian Botham's massive 149 and Bob Willis's 8 for 43 runs as England achieved a miraculous victory. When the story was exposed there was much unease in cricket circles. Had Lillee and Marsh deliberately thrown the match? Between them, they collected £7,500. No action was taken against them.
Australian batsman Dean Jones claimed to have been offered $50,000 by an Indian to provide information about the team during the Lankan tour.
Allan Border reveals that he was offered £500,000 by former Pakistan skipper Mushtaq Mohammed to fix a match. Border alleged Mushtaq offered him $1million for Australia to lose the fifth Ashes Test at Edgbaston, Birmingham, in 1993 under his captaincy. In his book Inside Out published in 2006, Mushtaq Mohammed said he only had a “tongue in cheek” conversation with Border on the sidelines of the Test. Mushtaq said he had only made a mention of the infamous 1981 Headingley Test when as he asked Border “what would you do if someone offered you big money to lose this Test match?”
South African skipper Hansie Cronje was introduced to Indian bookmaker Mukesh Gupta (known as 'John') by Mohammad Azharuddin. It was the start of a long and lucrative relationship for Cronje until he was found out.
Former Indian team manager, Sunil Dev alleges that some of the Indian players indulged in match fixing and demands a judicial enquiry. Sunil Dev who was the manager of the Indian team on the tour of South Africa and Zimbabwe in 1996-97 said at the subsequent Chandrachud inquiry that “Betting on cricket takes place heavily in India. It has been there for about ten years. It has assumed a large proportion since the introduction of one-day games. There is heavier betting on one-day matches because they are result-oriented. I cannot identify any particular player who bets on cricket but I am fairly certain that members of the team do lay a bet and one can only bet to lose. It is easy to get run out or hit a lofted shot. Coaches can detect a deliberate under-performance and so can students of the game. We may have lost some matches because some of our players laid bets to lose”
Manoj Prabhakar accuses a fellow Indian player of offering him Rs 25 lakh to throw a match in Sri Lanka in 1994. His revelation leads the BCCI to appoint a commission to look into the allegation.
Rashid Latif accuses Wasim Akram, Salim Malik, Inzamam-ul-Haq and Ijaz Ahmed of fixing matches. He also accuses Salim Malik of fixing matches during Pakistan's twin tour of South Africa and Zimbabwe in 1994-95.
Mark Waugh, Shane Warne and Tim May claim they were offered $50,000 to lose a Test by Salim Malik during their tour to Pakistan in 1994. The Australian cricket board then asks the ICC to appoint a panel to look into the allegations. The PCB in its enquiry implicates three Pakistan players and recommends a ban on Salim Malik.
Shane Warne and Mark Waugh are fined after they admit to having given pitch and weather information to bookmakers on Australia's tour of Sri Lanka in 1994. Warne and Mark Waugh admitted to accepting $11,000 from an Indian bookie to give some information on playing conditions during the ODI tournament played in Sri Lanka in 1994. When the issue was uncovered by the media in late-1998, the two players were widely condemned by the press and public, as was the Australian Cricket Board for their cover-up. Waugh received a hostile reaction from the Australian public when he walked out to bat during a Test match immediately after the news broke. The ACB appointed Rob O'Regan, QC to conduct an independent inquiry into the matter. O'Regan concluded that the fines were inadequate and wrote that a suspension for a "significant time" would have been a more appropriate penalty.
Former England player Chris Lewis says that he was offered £300,000 to persuade England players to lose a match against New Zealand. Chris Lewis, whose allegations against Indian businessman Sanjay Chawla led to an investigation by Scotland Yard, had the case closed in 2004 due to insufficient evidence. In 2008, Lewis was arrested after UK Border Agency seized four kilos of cocaine with an estimated value of £200,000 at Gatwick airport.
Delhi police charge Hansie Cronje with fixing South Africa's ODIs against India. Delhi police also reveal that they possess a conversation recorded during the ODI series between India and South Africa in March. They allege that the taped voices were of South African skipper Hansie Cronje and an Indian bookie, Sanjay Chawla. The conversation was about divulging team information and the amount to be paid to Cronje and his team-mates Herschelle Gibbs, Pieter Strydom and Nicky Boje.
Hansie Cronje initially denies the charges levelled against him saying, "I have never received any sum of money for any match that I have been involved in and have never approached any of the players and asked them if they wanted to fix a game."
The South African cricket board sacks Hansie Cronje after he calls Ali Bacher to confess that he was not entirely honest and admitted to have accepted $10,000 to $15,000 from a London-based bookmaker, for forecasting results, not match-fixing.
In the infamous Centurion Test against England in 2000, Hansie Cronje received £5,000 and a leather jacket for contriving a win for Nasser Hussain’s England team when a weather-affected draw looked certain. Cronje made the unexpected step of forfeiting an innings as he stage managed the result.
It is revealed that South Africa nearly accepted a $250,000 to lose a ODI against India in Mumbai in 1996. The players had discussed the offer in three meetings before it was turned down as Jonty Rhodes, Dave Richardson and Andrew Hudson were against it.
Justice Qayyum recommended life bans on Salim Malik and Mushtaq Ahmed in his report. He also suggested a heavy fine on Wasim Akram, Saeed Anwar, Waqar Younis, Inzamam ul Haq.The former Pakistan captain Malik was banned for life by this judicial inquiry after three Australia players accused him of offering them bribes to underperform in the tour of Sri Lanka in 1994. The report also stated that Wasim Akram should not be allowed to captain Pakistan in the future.
Former South African spinner Pat Symcox alleges that the team was offered around $250,000 to throw an ODI, on the first day of the King Commission hearings.
Herschelle Gibbs accuses Hansie Cronje of offering him a bribe to throw a match and tells the King Commission that he had accepted Cronje's offer of $15,000 to score less than 20 runs in an ODI in India.
Hansie Cronje admits to taking money for giving information to bookmakers and asking his team-mates to play badly. But he tells the King Commission that South Africa had never thrown or fixed a match under his captaincy.
The former South Africa captain Hansie Cronje is banned for life after admitting to match-fixing and having contact with bookmakers. Cronje later died in 2002 in a plane crash in mysterious circumstances.
Bookmaker MK Gupta names several players including Brian Lara, Dean Jones, Alec Stewart, Arjuna Ranatunga, Aravinda de Silva, Martin Crowe and Saleem Malik of being involved in match fixing, says a CBI report. The CBI also says that former India captain Mohammad Azharuddin confessed to fixing games with the help of colleagues Ajay Jadeja and Nayan Mongia.
BCCI's anti-corruption commissioner K Madhavan finds Mohammad Azharuddin guilty of match-fixing, while Ajay Jadeja, Manoj Prabhakar, Ajay Sharma and former Indian team physio Ali Irani are found guilty of having links with bookies.
BCCI bans Azharuddin for life and Ajay Jadeja for five years for their role in match-fixing. Ajay Sharma is also banned from the game for life, while Prabhakar and the Indian team's former physio, Ali Irani, are barred from holding any official post in Indian cricket for five years.
Aravinda De Silva was one of two Sri Lankans mentioned in the Indian Central Bureau of Investigation's report into match-fixing, in which Indian bookmaker Mukesh Gupta testified that he had paid de Silva and Arjuna Ranatunga for fixing the Lucknow Test in 1994. Gupta also stated that Aravinda de Silva had introduced him to Martin Crowe in New Zealand, a meeting that Crowe later confirmed. A subsequent inquiry in Sri Lanka by Desmond Fernando exonerated both de Silva and Ranatunga on the grounds that Gupta's evidence was "inadequate and untested" after Fernando failed to meet with Gupta.
Former England wicketkeeper batsman Alec Stewart is cleared of allegations that he took money from a bookmaker in return for providing team and pitch information during England's 1992-93 tour of India.
Marvan Atapattu was cleared of match-fixing allegations for lack of evidence by the Sri Lankan Cricket Board. Earlier, members of the International Cricket Council's Anti-Corruption and Security Unit were in Sri Lanka to conduct an independent inquiry into the cash ($30,000) that was found in the hotel room of Atapattu after a drawn test match was concluded against England in Kandy.
Kenyan player Maurice Odumbe is banned for five years by the Kenyan Cricket Association after he is found guilty of receiving money from bookmakers.
Kiwi skipper Stephen Fleming states that he was offered $370,000 during the 1999 World Cup to join a match-fixing syndicate. Fleming claimed he was offered money by an Indian sports promoter during the 1999 World Cup to join a match-fixing syndicate
Pakistan coach and former England player Bob Woolmer died suddenly in Jamaica, just a few hours after Pakistan's unexpected elimination at the hands of Ireland in the 2007 Cricket World Cup. Shortly afterwards, Jamaican police announced that they were opening a murder investigation into Woolmer's death. In November 2007, a jury in Jamaica recorded an open verdict on Woolmer's death, after deciding that there was insufficient evidence of either a criminal act or natural causes.
West Indies player Marlon Samuels is banned for two years for allegedly passing on information to an Indian bookie during an ODI series in India in 2007. The West Indies batsman received the ban for breaching cricket's code of conduct following an ICC investigation into his alleged links with the bookmaker
The Australia team's management files a report with the ICC's anti-corruption unit after one of their players says he was approached by a man suspected of links to illegal bookmaking, after Australia's defeat to England at Lord's
The Pakistan team were under scrutiny for their performance in the Test match in Sydney against Australia after player’s manager Mazhar Majeed told the News of the World a betting syndicate had made $1.3 million from the Test, a fact revealed during an undercover sting operation conducted by the newspaper in Aug 2010. This test match had previously been labelled "dysfunctional" by International Cricket Council investigators and denied as being fixed by Cricket Australia after as Ricky Ponting's men pulled off a remarkable come-from-behind victory after trailing by 206 runs on the first innings. Kamran Akmal, the Pakistan wicketkeeper was under investigation for his performance after he dropped four catches.
The Bangladesh captain, Shakib-Al-Hasan, confirms he received an approach, believed to be in March 2008, from an unknown person who Shakib believes wanted him to manipulate the result of a one-day match against Ireland
Former Sri Lanka captain Hashan Tillakaratne named Aravinda De Silva and Sanath Jayasuriya as he claimed that match-fixing has been rampant in Sri Lanka since 1992. Under pressure, he later retracted these statements.
Pakistan's Salman Butt, Mohammad Amir and Mohammad Asif are convicted in a London court and jailed over no-balls bowled deliberately against England at Lord's in 2010. Their agent, Mazheer Majeed, is jailed for two and a half years
Former England Under 19 cricketer Mervyn Westfield pleaded guilty to accepting £6,000 to give away runs in the Pro 40 match against Durham and was sentenced to prison. The Essex player was convicted of spot-fixing during the game in September 2009, in which he bowled four wides and two no-balls in a single over.
An investigation by The Sunday Times claimed bookies in India had used a Bollywood starlet, Nupur Mehta, to seduce cricketers to fix matches in a “honey pot” sting. The story was accompanied by a pixelated image of the starlet. Mehta admitted that she was dating Sri Lankan cricketer Tillakaratne Dilshan around the time of the 2009 T20 World Cup in England despite the fact that Dilshan was married at the time. Before that, she had denied knowing any cricketer and had even threatened to sue the paper for carrying her blurred image with a match-fixing report. 'I was seeing Dilshan and went to the casino with him but that does not suggest I am involved with match-fixing in cricket”.
Sonu Yogendra Jalan and Devendra Kothari were arrested on by the crime branch for their alleged involvement in betting racket involving the ongoing Indian Premier League (IPL) matches. Jalan alias Malad has confessed to the Indian police that he had paid Rs 10 crores to a Sri Lankan cricketer for fixing a match. He along with Kothari is believed to be a part of a much bigger betting racket. SL Cricket denied any wrong doing by their players.
Five Indian players were banned by the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) in the wake of a television sting operation which claimed to have exposed corruption in the cash-rich Indian Premier League (IPL). The IPL governing council met and suspended 5 players: Abhinav Bali, T.P. Sudhindra (Deccan Chargers), Mohnish Mishra (Pune Warriors), Amit Yadav (Kings XI Punjab) and Shalabh Shrivastava (Kings XI Punjab). This was after the BCCI hurriedly setup an inquiry into the incident by Ravi Sawani, the former chief of the ICC's Anti-Corruption Unit who heads of the BCCI's Anti-Corruption Unit. TP Sudhindra was given a life ban for "receiving a consideration to spot-fix" in a domestic game and the other four players were banned for 1 to 5 years. In evidence, the banned players also stated that an international captain of one IPL team was heavily involved in match fixing.
Pakistan leg-spinner Danish Kaneria and seamer Mervyn Westfield were both found guilty of offences by an England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) disciplinary panel. Kaneria was found guilty by the ECB of two charges and was banned for life; he first "induced or encouraged, or attempted to induce or encourage, Mervyn Westfield not to perform on his merits, that is, to deliberately concede a minimum number of runs in his first over of the match between Essex and Durham." and he was also found guilty of bringing cricket into disrepute "by inducing or encouraging Mervyn Westfield not to perform on his merits".
The Bangladesh Premier League was rocked before it even started as Mashrafe Mortaza reported to his franchise (Dhaka Gladiators) an approach from a fellow cricketer to indulge in spot-fixing during the tournament in Feb 2012. Mashrafe was asked to provide information on whether he would play certain matches and if he would be wearing his sunglasses or cap and was to be paid 15-20 per cent of the earnings from the spot-fixing. Former Bangladesh player Shariful Haque was eventually banned after he was found guilty by the Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) of attempting this spot fix with Mortaza.
An Indian TV News channel ran a sting operation in which six umpires from three countries had offered to rig events in return for bribes. The umpires named were Nadeem Ghauri and Anees Siddiqui of Pakistan, Nadir Shah of Bangladesh, and Gamini Dissanayake, Maurice Winston and Sagara Gallage from Sri Lanka. Shah had served on ICC’s international panel whilst Ghauri stood in 43 one-day internationals. The International Cricket Council launched an "urgent investigation" into these match-fixing allegations after seeing the evidence.
Current test player Sreeshant and 2 fellow Rajasthan Royal IPL players are arrested by Delhi Police on spot fixing charges. The crisis deepened further as Gurunath Meiyappan, CEO of Chennai Super Kings IPL team was arrested - he is the son in law of BCCI Chief, Srinivasan, who also owns the CSK franchise.
Raj Kundra, owner of Rajasthan Royals, had his passport confiscated after a marathon hearing with the Police and was later suspended by the BCCI pending a formal investigation.
Former Bangledeshi captain Mohammad Ashraful confessed to match fixing after the BCB suspended him for spot fixing in the BPL.
Article Last Updated: 8 June 2013
More reading on Match and Spot Fixing
This CricketCrowd Page of Shame series also examines the following related items over the next few weeks.
The list of Shamed Players and Suspects – coming soon
How does match-fixing and spot fixing make money – coming soon
Past match fixing investigations - coming soon
The impact of IPL in the growth in Spot-Fixing – coming soon
Want more analysis? Checkout the Clip-Dex Page of Match Fixing Videos
- Spot fixing concern: Why did Sanga order no ball?
Tony Greig explains the facts as to why the Sri Lankans were hell bent on preventing Sehwag from getting his ton. As India were approaching their victory target of 170 with Sehwag in his 90s, skipper Sangakkara lets thru 4 byes that tied the scores. He then clearly orders Randiv to bowl a no ball which cancelled out Sehwag's six as the scores were level. These actions of some desparation raises the spectre of spot fixing as the odds on Sehwag getting his hundred in the dying overs of a one sided match was very high.
What really compounded the concerns of spot fixing was when Sangakkara appeared at the press conference and made statements which appeared in complete contradiction of the events that he seemed to orchestrate on the field, prior to this stump mic evidence emerging.
3rd ODI, Tri Nations, Dambulla, 16th Aug 2010
- Cronje Affair: Captain and the Bookmaker (Part 1)
- The exposure of Hansie Cronje South Africa's revered captain as corrupt he was recorded taking bribes and agreeing to fix matches during the 2000 Test series between England and South Africa sent shockwaves through the game. From the "Not Cricket 2" Documentary from BBC. June 2008.
- Sreeshant spot fix: Delhi Police reveal codes and hand signals scam
- Delhi police team explained in detail, using match footage, how they cracked the modus-operandi behind spot-fixing in the IPL. Three Rajasthan Royals players, Test star Sreesanth, Ajit Chandila and Ankeet Chavan have been arrested as Indian cricket was rocked again by spot fixing allegations. May 2013
- Operation World Cup: ICC Umpires exposed in match fixing sting
Overshadowing the Windies win in their T20 World Cup final, the International Cricket Council (ICC) has launched an "urgent investigation" following allegations by an Indian television station that several umpires were willing to fix matches for money. The sting exposed umpires' involvement in fixing matches was code named "Operation World Cup" and showed Bangladesh's Nadir Shah, Pakistan's Nadeem Ghauri and Anees Siddiqui, Gamini Dissanayake, Maurice Winston and Sagara Gallage of Sri Lanka being involved in fixing. Geoff Lawson provides expert comments. Oct 2012