UK court hears BPL spot-fixing case

Aditi Khanna, London
Published : 00:01, Dec 07, 2019 | Updated : 00:13, Dec 07, 2019

An investigation by the UK’s National Crime Agency (NCA) into alleged spot-fixing in Twenty20 tournaments organised by the national cricket boards of Bangladesh and Pakistan – the Bangladesh Premier League (BPL) and Pakistan Super League (PPL) – came up in court in Britain this week.
The case was heard at Manchester Crown Court. PHOTO via The StarManchester Crown Court was told how an undercover police officer’s work led to the uncovering of an attempted fix in the BPL towards the end of 2016 and an actual fix in the PSL in February 2017.
Two PSL players – Yousef Anwar and Mohammed Ijaz – have pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit bribery. They admit to conspiring together between November 2016 and December 2016 to offer financial advantages to players in the Bangladesh Premier League, with the intention of inducing them to perform improperly by failing to play competitively in good faith.
They also admitted the same charge in relation to players taking part in the Pakistan Super League between November 2016 and February 2017.
Former Pakistani international opening batsman Nasir Jamshaid is accused of being part of a spot-fixing ring in the PSL and the target of bribery in a so-called Bangladesh "two dot ball" plan during that period. The 33-year-old, who lives in Walsall in the West Midlands region of England, pleads not guilty to conspiring to offer bribes to professional cricket players.
Opening the case in Manchester Crown Court this week, prosecutor Andrew Thomas said: "Two no-scoring balls in a match may not seem a great deal. No doubt the players were willing to go along with it because the risk that it would make the difference between their team winning or losing was relatively slim.
"The fact the price for this fix was £30,000 shows just how significant it would be if tens and hundreds of thousands of pounds could be made through fraudulent bets."
Jamshed, who denies the charges, will stand trial on the charges in February next year after which Anwar and Ijaz will also be sentenced.