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Ok, so where there's smoke there's ire. But has a long bow been drawn when a bloke bowling mo balls at Lords in August is tendered as evidence that the Sydney Test in January was fixed, even if it was.


A mo ball for mo money?


I mean, obviously, apart from at least thirty years of allegations.


Variety is the spice of life. Mikey Holding would call it a Woh Ball!

"How far over was that? Woh!"

And nor should any sensible sports follower trust the word of Middle-man Mazhar Majeed:

"Let me tell you the last Test we did. It was the second Test against Australia in Sydney ... The odds for Pakistan to lose that match, for Australia to win that match were, I think, 40-1 ... That one we made 1.3 [million US dollars]."

Whenever anyone opens a sentence with "Let me tell you" I tune out.


And match fixing allegations overshadow a far more important aspect of the Sydney Test: Ponting's stupid decision to bat in a sauna.


There's a reason they call him Punter.


Holy Fuck. Or maybe that should be Wholly Fuck? What a shambles. I'd love to know what's going through Darrell Hair's mind after the equally shambolic Oval Test in 2006, and the PCB's shrill cries of "Hair's a racist! Pakistani cricketers are as pure as the driven snow! Ball-tampering? What's that???" et cetera. Particularly as it's been alleged that the bloke at the centre of all this was known to many of the Pakistani squad from that tour on.

You'd want to think that this is some sort of beat up. But in your heart of hearts you know it ain't true. If it was, then the press conference after the Test would have run very differently. Let's face it - Pakistani cricket: SN:AFU.

The thing is that if it had happened even six months ago I really wouldn't have cared less. A glorified minnow team in the midst of yet another controversy = meh. But it's been such an interesting English summer of cricket - for the first time in a long time I've really enjoyed watching Pakistan play, particularly with the ball, and I'm genuinely gutted by this. Where will they be without Asif and Aamer? And Butt, and the other guys that haven't been named? Particularly Aamer, who was looking like being a genuinely exciting talent. You could probably expect that at the age of 18 and it being a first offence that he'll be back - but it has to be the end of Asif's career after his drug offences.

It's all just a bit fucked. Maybe a bit OTT, but you'd have to wonder whether there might be some sort of ban in order for Pakistani cricket in general in the offing. Let's face it, it's not exactly a first offence, is it? What do you do with a rogue cricket nation that is just so consistently corrupt at the highest level?


... and here we were getting stuck into Punter for batting first!
Perhaps he knew!


btw guys, mohammad amir didn't play in sydney.


Anyone who discusses this is a racist!

Gnnnn Shane Warne waahgarble intemperate Sikh warrior gnnnnnn pitch reports John the bookmaker!!! So cold.... it's s-s-so cold.


No one wants to play in Pakistan. Now no one will want to play Pakistan. Who wants to see a fix? Just look at the relative popularity of MMA vs boxing.

Perhaps the Pakis can launch their own form of the game, much like WWE?WWF wrestling, where everything will be larger than life - hooping deliveries, snapping doosras, innings wins, big collapses - and completely fixed.


I believe, nick, they call that the IPL.

Big Ramifications

Those last two posts were comedy gold. I dips me lid to you both.


nick, fair chance bookies and punters will start avoiding Pakistan too. Who'd bet on a team when the result is fixed? Who'd offer long odds on any outcome when anything is possible?

Potential solution to that: gambling insurance. Set up a fund that bookies pay into, if any aspect of the game is shown to be fixed, they get paid some amount: otherwise the profits go to the players. It'd be a pretty dumb insurance company to willingly burn down a house they'd insured against fire.

David Barry

Russ, which gambling markets are you talking about here? All the bookies from the subcontinent who take cricket bets are doing so illegally, so I don't see how this fund could work.

Match-fixing and Pakistan have a long history, but clearly there are still plenty of people willing to bet on matches involving them.


DB, even if you only included the Australian/British ones, with an interest in a fair contest, you'd have enough financial muscle to outbid hacks like Majeed. Fixing only works because the Pakistan players are paid so little, and the bets being made are such a small (unnoticeable) drop in a big market.

100k per game, across all agencies is not much more than peanuts to them. Particularly if they get promised a 10m payout for gambling breaches - enough to cover any losses. But 5k per game, per player, would be a huge incentive for the lower paid players to stay straight, doubly so when not doing so might cost your team-mates and opposition thousands as well.

That is the saddest thing about cricket and match-fixing, not that it happens, but that they always sell-out the game and themselves for such piddling amounts.


'There's a reason they call him Punter.'

'I believe, nick, they call that the IPL.'

someone get a hose, m0nty, is on fire!


I am depressed about Aamer. Player I've most enjoyed watching in the past year.

What a pile of crud.

The Don has Risen

actually I am not worried about this. People who gamble on this deserve to lose money.
It is taking money to lose a match that needs to be investigated and gotten rid of.

just remember it is very easy to intimidate Pakis as Henry has written about.

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