Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : May 18th 2013 Contents A67
Saturday, May 18, 2013 www.guardian.co.tt Guardian
The Indian Premier League (IPL), which
was enjoying its most successful season to
date, has been rocked by allegations of
match-fixing by three Rajasthan Royals
Spot-fixing, match-fixing and other forms
of corruption involving the IPL do not surprise
me because when millionaires throw money
behind a cricket team, they want unlimited
control and think they and their family and
friends can reside in the dugouts and the
dressing rooms, like players.
One cannot take a break from keeping an
eye out for corrupt individuals around the
cricket and once this is done, the bookies are
just waiting to get it. The IPL, with a cocktail
of party atmosphere, entertainment, cricket
and celebrity becomes attractive to the corrupt
ones. Amid all that, we find that some of the
bad old faces who were involved in match-
fixing a decade ago, re-appearing at grounds
and hotels and wanting to get involved.
With this in mind, I am quick to believe
that the IPL brings with it the biggest threat
in terms of corruption in the game since the
days of rich cricket in Sharjah. It is simple
to understand why people would go after IPL
matches. It is very popular and millions of
eyeballs are fixed on it. This means that with
more people involved, interest is keen and
there are more takers when bets are offered.
It makes the IPL fertile grounds for match-
Another big factor is the relaxed attitude
The Tobago House of Assembly (THA) will con-
tribute over $215,000 in prize money to the Tobago
Football League for its 2013 competitions, assistant
secretary in charge of Youth Affairs and Sport
Assemblyman Jomo Pitt disclosed at Wednesday s
post-Executive Council media briefing.
The league will run from June 1 to November 30
on recreation grounds across Tobago. Most of these
grounds have already been lit or are in the process
of having floodlights installed.
Pitt said at the end of the season the grounds will
be rested in preparation for the cricket season, which
starts in January 2014.
He also told the briefing that laying of the Mondo
track at the Dwight York Stadium was on schedule
and, weather permitting, will be ready for use in
August. However, he said, an assessment of work
on the infrastructure at the stadium was still to be
done by a consultant, who has not yet been appointed
by the Sport Company of T&T.
Jomo said an Assembly committee will, however,
be appointed to determine if the stadium's infra-
structure was safe for use in the meantime.
IPL has biggest appeal for corruption
THA gives $.2m
to football league
to security. The Board of Control for Cricket in India
(BCCI) goes out of its way to provide physical security
for the players from fans and even potential terrorists.
However, its attitude has been a lot more relaxed in
providing security for the sport of cricket.
Match-fixing has eaten away at the bowels of the
sport of cricket since it reared its ugly head about a
decade ago. The BCCI has to protect the game from
even the players when they are induced into dishonesty
by bookies who are willing to pay them in one go even
more money than they can get for an entire series.
During the inaugural IPL, ICC Anti-Corruption
and Security Unit officers were present in India but
only in an advisory role. Lalit Modi, the then IPL chair-
man, decided to hire a private security firm from South
Africa to mainly look after the security of the play-
ers.A set of 10 security officials with varying military
and police backgrounds were trained by the ACSU
officers. However, it was never going to be a smooth
affair with the millionaire owners unimpressed by the
meddling of the ACSU officers, who they felt were
being too intrusive. On one occasion, Kolkata Knight
Riders' owner Shah Rukh Khan was asked, at the behest
of the ACSU, to leave the dugout during one of the
matches because he was not properly accredited.
This did not go down too well and the BCCI has
generally bowed to the request of their big spending
owners. I am not saying that the owners are corrupt
but when the rules of security are slackened it makes
room for others with bad intentions to become close
to the players and get them hooked on their scheme.
Incidents like match-fixing have profound effects
on the fans, who die for this game. It will lead them
to question more and more. A mistake on the field
will no longer be just that, an integral part of sport,
but will be scrutinised for a dark motive. An unorthodox
shot or a gamble with the ball will not produce a thrill
and a sigh, but anger. And it won't just be fans but
captains and teammates who will feel that way.
The fan has a right to be angry and let down. I think
that the Indian fans who are very outspoken have to
keep at it, keep showing their displeasure, of course
in an organised way, in order to show the BCCI that
as major stakeholders of the game, they are unhap-
py.If they move on too fast from this situation, things
would all be forgotten and security will again be taken
for granted and the cycle will continue. If over a decade
match-fixing continues it is obvious that it is something
we have to live with like the plague. We need to be
vigilant at all times and work awareness of the situation
into our daily cricket lives in order to stop this rot.
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