Pitch Fixing

Video: Ex-Pakistani cricketer Hassan Raza in presence of alleged spot fixers

Screenshot of Al-Jazeera's Video

The recent pitch-fixing allegations involving two Sri Lankans and a former cricketer from Mumbai now have another player added to the ranks.

Former Pakistan batsman Hasan Raza has been caught on camera in a sting operation by news channel Al Jazeera in the presence of another man talking about facilitating spot-fixing in T20 tournaments.

As noted by ESPNcricinfo, Raza can be seen seated in the chair adjacent to Robin Morris, a former professional cricketer from Mumbai. Raza, however, does not partake in the conversation between Morris and the undercover reporter.

Raza and Morris both played for Mumbai Champs, a team that was part of the now-defunct Indian Cricket League between 2007-08.

In the video, part of a broader investigative documentary the channel will air from Sunday, Morris talks about setting up a T20 tournament for the purposes of spot-fixing and betting. He says that no A-grade players will be involved, but that he can bring in B, C, and D grade players. He talks of taking such tournaments from Dubai, to Hong Kong, Zimbabwe and Sri Lanka.

According to Al Jazeera, Raza did not respond to its allegations, while Morris “denies any wrongdoing” and said the channel invited him “to audition for, and act in, a commercial movie ‘for public entertainment’.”

Related: Three Tests featuring Indian cricket team were fixed: sting report

Old video is shown to trap me: ex-Pakistan cricketer Hasan Raza

Former Pakistan batsman Hasan Raza has said the video shown by Al Jazeera as part of its investigative documentary is an old clip that is used to “trap him”.

While speaking to a private TV channel on Sunday, Raza said the video is from Ajman where he had gone for a local tournament.

A video has recently surfaced showing Raza in the presence of another man talking about facilitating spot-fixing in T20 tournaments.

Raza said he had not informed the Pakistan Cricket Board about going to Ajman as he was not on its central contract list and hence was not in frequent contact with the board.

However, according to the former batsman, when he suspected fixing was under way for matches he backed out of the discussion.

“I have reported match-fixing to International Cricket Council in the past [as well],” Raza said.

However, he ensured complete corporation with ICC and PCB regarding investigation into the allegations.

As noted by ESPNcricinfo, Raza can be seen seated in the chair adjacent to Robin Morris, a former professional cricketer from Mumbai. Raza, however, does not partake in the conversation between Morris and the undercover reporter.

Raza and Morris both played for Mumbai Champs, a team that was part of the now-defunct Indian Cricket League between 2007-08.

In the video, part of a broader investigative documentary the channel will air from Sunday, Morris talks about setting up a T20 tournament for the purposes of spot-fixing and betting. He says that no A-grade players will be involved, but that he can bring in B, C, and D grade players. He talks of taking such tournaments from Dubai, to Hong Kong, Zimbabwe and Sri Lanka.

According to Al Jazeera, Raza did not respond to its allegations, while Morris “denies any wrongdoing” and said the channel invited him “to audition for, and act in, a commercial movie ‘for public entertainment’.”

Fixing scandal

Earlier, the reports stated two Sri Lankans and a former Indian player were caught discussing how to rig England’s opening Test against Sri Lanka in November this year.

The London-based Daily Telegraph said late Friday that the Al Jazeera footage seen by the newspaper featured Robin Morris, Tharindu Mendis, a player from Colombo, and Tharanga Indika, an assistant manager at Galle International Stadium.

The newspaper reported that the footage showed the men talking about doctoring pitches during a meeting with an undercover reporter.

The men were reportedly discussing ways to prepare the pitch to ensure that the first Test at the Galle ground would not end in a draw and would yield a result in less than four days.

Such tactics would allow those involved to profit dishonestly from placing bets against that outcome with unsuspecting bookmakers.

On Saturday, the International Cricket Council said it was investigating the ‘wicket-fixing’ allegations. The governing body said it took the allegations reported in the documentary “very seriously” and urged “all evidence and supporting material” to be shared with the investigators.

PCB reviewing reports

The PCB and its Anti-Corruption Unit is in the process of reviewing reports regarding the alleged involvement of Raza in the fixing scandal.

According to the PCB, appropriate action, if any, will be taken after collecting and reviewing all relevant evidence.

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