Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Spot Fixing Punishments

Spot fixing doesn't come as that big a surprise to anybody who follows the game regularly.Obviously,it is not as serious an offence as match fixing,however,it is a grave mistake on the part of players who were involved.

Many ex-cricketers and even bloggers have said,that a life ban isn't the right punishment for any of the players involved in spot fixing.I don't disagree to that,but I don't think it will be fair to just let them off with a heavy fine.This would rather send the wrong message,as players would realize that they could get away with spot fixing and wouldn't refrain from getting involved in it.I feel at least a ban for an year is a must for anyone who is proven guilty.Also,this ban should come from ICC and not the PCB,since we all know how the PCB can change its stance under pressure.

The three players in the center of this controversy,Salman Butt,Mohammad Asif and Amir are all key players for the Pakistani team.Yet,they should not be allowed to let free if proven guilty.It is high-time that the players who were involved stop getting away without much trouble.

When it comes to Asif,I am sure,he is no saint who has been dragged into the matter.In spite of being among the best swing bowlers around the world,he has been very controversial with a drug scandal in Dubai.Asif must be given strong punishment for this and even a 2-year ban would not be too harsh for a man with such a past.

Teenage sensation Amir,on the other hand,has the sympathy of most of the cricketing world.I think if the youngster has been keeping bad company,he must be banned for at least an year.People must not consider his family background or his talent while judging him.The speedster has a lot to offer,but he must learn his lessons early to survive gracefully in the international arena.Back in the 90's,Wasim Akram was let off by justice Qayyam on match fixing allegations,because he had a 'soft corner' for Akram.This must not be repeated in Amir's case.I am sure a talent like him,will bounce back with stronger resolve to fight even if he is banned(after proven guilty).

If there was one man in the Pakistan team who I did suspect to have such relations,it would be Salman Butt.Butt,is among the few well educated people in the team and surely surprised me when his name came up in the controversy.Unlike Asif,Butt has never been involved in any controversy before this.He has usually come across as a talented,hard working batsmen who keeps to his business.However,if accusations are true,then he too,must be banned for at least an year.

I feel any penalty of lesser magnitude than a ban(particularly for Amir)would just make it easier for players from poor backgrounds to get involved and still get away.We just cannot allow PCB to take action and then as usual,undo it.Rather,ICC must take strong measures to not only punish players for any wrongdoings,but also to make sure that fear of getting caught is set in all players' mind.


  1. Mayank, my views are not too different from yours. In fact, if you read my post at CRIC - SIS, you will see that I want these guys punished... but not banned for life.

    In fact, in Asif's case, I might even consider a life ban. His name is not the cleanest in the game. He needs a 5-year ban at least. But you are right about Butt and Amir... they should not be banned for more than 12-18 months.

    Amir is young and has not had a lot of exposure at the top. One year away from the game that earns him his daily livelihood ought to teach him a lesson in life. I hope it can make him realise that life away from cricket is a lot worse for him.

    Butt is, as you very rightly said, educated and different from the rest of the lot. Even I did not expect him to land up in this soup. I would recommend a ban that is longer than Amir's in this case. Butt is educated, has been around for some time... and most importantly, captain of an international Test team. If he is still guilty, then he deserves a 2-year ban atleast!

  2. Oh okay Shri,I actually breezed through the article since I didn't get much time to read it in detail.I guess I mistook your line about giving them a second chance.
    But,one thing is certain.Fear of punishment is a must.

  3. By second chance, I meant a second chance after one strong punishment. They need to learn their lessons, after all!

    When a child falters, he is punished by his parents or teachers to bring him in line. But after the punishment, he is again given his freedom to see if the lessons have sunk in.

    These men are in the same situation right now!


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