Cricket is the 2nd most popular sports game in the world, and it attracts the attention of crime syndicates for their advantage and profits. So, we all know that people bet and gamble everything in which they seek profits, just like that, cricket is also bound by them as well. Match-fixing is also a greatest profit source for crime syndicates, in which a player is paid by a gambler as per pre-determined results. Literally, you can say that a player is purchased by a group of gamblers and then, they perform in the match as already decided. This is against the laws and policies of cricket and if players are caught doing it, they’ll be charged with fine, directly be sent to the jail or banned permanently. There have been numerous guilty cases in which the players are caught red-handed. Let’s take a look at Top 10 Terrible Match-Fixing Scandals In History Of Cricket.
10. Maurice Odumbe (Kenya)
Maurice Odumbe is a Kenyan cricketer whose career was going good earlier in 1996 World Cup, in fact, he was one of the leading players of the tournament. When Kenya defeated West Indies in World Cup 1996, he was titled as ‘Man Of The Match’. Suddenly in 2004, ICC found out that Maurice Odumbe was being paid by the match-fixing syndicates. Then, ICC put a ban on him for five years. Maurice Odumbe promised that when his ban will end, he’ll be performing in a high-class form. So he did! In 2009, when he came back, he appeared with wonderful form in domestic cricket.
9. Marlon Samuels (West Indies)
Marlon Samuels is a West Indian cricketer who was proved guilty in 2008, as he was accused of revealing the information about the team tactics and decisions to a bookie, for the match of West Indies vs India in Nagpur, in 2007. However, Samuels continued neglecting it and kept up with his innocence. But the recorded tapes of on-phone conversations were enough of proof to ban him for 2 years. But his comeback was impressive when the period of his ban was over. He also appeared in 2012 T20 World Cup, which was triumphed by West Indies.
8. Mervyn Westfield (England)
Mervyn Westfield was a first English cricketer to be convicted of match-fixing. This match-fixing case was really disgusting for England team. In 2012, he was accused of ‘match irregularities’ in domestic cricket in 2009. He literally admitted that he took £6,000 for bowling continuous wide deliveries. He then was sent to the jail for four months, and even England Cricket Board banned him permanently to play cricket in domestic or national team, ever.
7. No-Ball Scandal (Pakistan)
In 2010, Pakistani players; Mohammad Amir, Salman Butt and Mohammad Asif were accused of spot-fixing, taking a lot of money in return of playing no-balls. It was investigated and proved by ICC, as the sting operation was conducted and the evidence were correct. All three of the players were banned by ICC for 5 to 10 years. In 2011, they were even sent to jail for what they’ve done. It was all the way terrible and shocking for Pakistan. Recently, Mohammad Amir is approved to play again for Pakistan and currently, he is trying hard in domestic cricket.
6. Shane Warne and Mark Waugh (Australia)
Shane Warne and Mark Waugh were Australian cricketers. In 1994 to 1995, both of them were accused of taking money from the ‘Indian bookmaker’ for revealing weather and pitch information to him. Though, Australian Cricket Board was trying to hide this matter, because it was a terrible match-fixing scandal in earlier 90s. The matter was again brought to the front by the media, and both the players defended themselves by saying that they never revealed any strategic material.
Apparently, Shane Warne was also accused of offering Pakistani captain Saleem Malik a bunch of money to lose matches. His credibility was questioned immediately after this exposure.
5. Saleem Malik (Pakistan)
Saleem Malik was a Pakistani captain in earlier 80s and 90s. Saleem Malik was a great cricketer of his era, but eventually, he was accused in taking bribes and spot-fixing. In fact, he was the first cricketer in 21st century to be caught in match-fixing and got banned. During Pakistan’s tour to South Africa and Zimbabwe, in his captaincy, he came off clean, but when he completed 100 test matches of his career, he finally found to be guilty and got banned permanently.
4. Mohammad Azharuddin (India)
Mohammad Azharuddin was an Indian captain earlier in 90s. In 2000, he was accused of permanently banned. It was proved that the South African player, Hansie Cronje, who was also found guilty for match-fixing, was introduced by Mohammad Azharuddin to the bookies, who gave them bribes. Apparently, Mohammad Azharuddin was involved in fixing 3 ODIs in total, and therefore, he was charged with permanent banned. He later alleged that he is a Muslim, and that’s why being a part of this conspiracy. Though, in 2012, Indian High Court reviewed his case and lifted the ban from him.
3. 3 Players – Big Match-Fixing Controversy (India)
In 1998, Manoj Prabhakar revealed shockingly that one of his teammates had tried to bribe him with Rs. 25 Lac to under perform in the match against Pakistan in 1994. After a investigaton by BCCI, it was revealed that Manoj targeting on Kapil Dev. In 2000, a raid was conducted on the houses of those prominent and doubtful players and officials in which, Azharuddin and Ajay Sharma were declared guilty straight away and were banned, while, it was also been clear that Manoj Prabhakar and Ajay jadeja were also been in touch with the bookies.
2. Premier League – Match-Fixing Scandal!
In 2013, Indian cricket faced a terrible situation when a tough match-fixing scandal was found in their Premier League. Three cricketers were found guilty in match-fixing scandal and arrested by Indian Police; Ajit Chandila, Ankeet Chavan and S. Sreesanth. Though, there were 23 more people involved in spot-fixing including actors, cricket officials and bookies. They were all accused of having connections with crime lord Dawood Ibrahim and his right hand, Chhota Shakeel. However, there was a lack of strong evidence against a number of people involved and they got themselves free of charge.
You can follow the investigation of Premier League’s Match Fixing Scandal here.
1. Hansie Cronje (South Africa)
This one is the most terrible match-fixing scandal which just blew the minds of everyone in International Cricket game. Hansie Cronje was a best cricketer of the South African team. In 2000, he was accused of being in contact with Sanjay Chawla. Police revealed the investigation report in which it was written that Hansie Cronje was involved with Sanjay Chawla (who is one of the great betting-syndicate in India). Hansie Cronje rejected all the charges, tried to defend himself. But in cross-examination process, it was proved. He got banned for life time, and in 2002, he died in a plane crash. Apparently, it was said that he was murdered.
That’s all! These scandals were all terrible and disgusting, which spread too much misery for cricket fans across the world. Fans of any national team desires natural performances by their favorite team players, and if such kind of illegal activities take place, it’s a very big disappointment!
Don’t forget to check out: 10 Devastating Accidents Ever In Cricket History