More players under scanner in IPL spot-fixing probe

New Delhi:The role of more players whose names cropped up during interrogation of the arrested cricketers and bookies in the IPL spot-fixing scandal could be probed, Delhi police said on Friday, as six bookies were held in Tamil Nadu in connection with another IPL betting racket.

Police claimed that Indian pacer Sreesanth and Ankit Chavan–two of the three arrested Rajasthan Royal(RR) players–have "confessed" to the spot-fixing charge but the lawyers of the two cricketers denied their involvement.

Delhi Police is also likely to probe some more IPL matches in the current season even as Sreesanth, Chavan and Ajit Chandila–also a RR player–along with 11 other arrested bookies were subjected to interrogation by its Special Cell.

Asked whether women were used to trap or lure players in the spot-fixing racket, sources replied in the affirmative.

It has also emerged that the arrested bookies tried to lure three players, including two foreigners, with the help of Chandila, to be part of the spot-fixing racket. The players– Brad Hogg, Kevin Cooper and Siddharth Trivedi–, however, spurned their invite to join a party at Jaipur for clinching the deal, the sources said.

Sources said Sreeshant, Chavan and Amit Singh, a cricketer-turned-bookie, broke into tears when they were being grilled by the police sleuths.

From the investigations so far since the arrests yesterday, Chandila is emerging as the main accused among the three cricketers while Chandresh Patel is believed to be the key link among the bookies.

As investigators in Delhi went into the bottom of the spot-fixing scandal that has sparked an outrage, Tamil Nadu police claimed to have busted a separate betting racket relating to IPL matches with the arrest of six bookies in Chennai and recovered Rs 14 lakh in cash.

The suspected mastermind was operating from Delhi, Crime Branch-CID SPs Perumal and S Rajeshwari told reporters in Chennai. The arrests followed searches at 13 locations in Chennai based on a tip-off.

Sreesanth's lawyer insisted his client is "totally innocent."

Speaking to reporters, Deepak Prakash said, "Sreesanth has been falsely or mistakenly arrested. They (Delhi Police) have got some wrong information or mistakenly arrested him."