BCCI bans players caught in IPL spot-fixing
Mumbai: Cracking the whip on domestic cricketers caught in the IPL spot-fixing scandal, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) on Saturday slapped a life ban on Indian pacer T P Sudhindra and handed lighter punishments to four other players who were also exposed in a TV sting operation.
The decision to ban the players for varying degrees was taken by the BCCI`s disciplinary committee, headed by President N Srinivasan, which met here to discuss the report submitted by the Board`s Anti-Corruption Unit chief Ravi Sawani on the matter. While the 28-year-old Sudhindra was the worst hit as his career seems almost over, Shalabh Srivastava was banned for five years. Mohnish Mishra, Amit Yadav and Abhinav Bali were banned for a year each.
"The Committee held Sudhindra guilty of actually receiving a consideration to spot-fix in a domestic cricket match, and hence imposed exemplary penalty on him. Sudhindra has been debarred for life, from playing any cricket matches conducted or authorised by the ICC or BCCI, or any affiliated unit of the BCCI," the Board said in a statement.
Sudhindra will not be entitled to the monthly gratis, benevolent fund, benefit match or any other facility offered to players by the BCCI. He also cannot hold any position in any cricket association affiliated to the BCCI for life. "Shalabh Srivastava was held guilty of agreeing to fix a match and negotiate terms for the same, even though no actual match-fixing or spot fixing took place," the Board stated.
"He has been debarred for a period of five years, from playing any cricket matches conducted or authorised by the ICC or BCCI, or any affiliated unit of the BCCI," it added. Like Sudhindra, he will also not be entitled to the monthly gratis, benevolent fund, benefit matches or any other facility, during this period. Srivastava has been also barred from holding positions in any cricket association affiliated to the BCCI, for a period of five years.
"The (other) three players, through loose talk and unsubstantiated bragging, brought the game into disrepute, and hence, have been held guilty of the lesser offence," the Board explained. "They have been debarred for a period of one year, from playing any cricket matches conducted or authorised by the ICC or BCCI, or any affiliated unit of the BCCI," it added. The penalties will be effective from the date of the suspension of these players which was May 15.
The television sting operation had claimed that they agreed to shadowy deals in the Indian Premier League and other matches. Three of the five players — Sudhindra, Mishra and Bali — attended the meeting on Saturday to present their points of view before the panel whose other members are Board vice-presidents Arun Jaitely and Niranjan Shah.
Srivastava and Yadav pleaded their respective cases through teleconference during the meeting. The five uncapped players were allegedly caught indulging in corrupt practices, including spot-fixing, by an Indian TV channel which conducted a sting operation during this year`s IPL.
BCCI had then asked Sawani to conduct a probe in the matter and he submitted his report to Srinivasan a few weeks back. The channel — India TV — had claimed to have blown the lid off "murky deals" in the IPL among players, organisers, owners and big guns of Indian cricket.