Fixing on in IPL, alleges TV channel

New Delhi: Spot fixing and underhand financial dealings seem to be rampant in the world’s richest, glitziest T20 competition, the Indian Premier League, if a sting operation by India TV is to be believed. The TV channel showed five domestic-level players, representing various IPL franchises, apparently succumbing to the lure of fixing. It showed these players discussing the alleged involvement of IPL captains and even team owners in such activities and engaging in lengthy haggling over the price of bowling a noball on demand in the IPL. They were also seen discussing deals in which IPL owners allegedly pay players sums ‘in black’ well beyond slabs prescribed by the league. The accuracy of the channel’s claims or the statements attributed to the players could not be independently verified by TOI. BCCI — whose president N Srinivasan is the owner of an IPL team — was quick to react, saying it “would not tolerate any violations of regulation or any act of corruption” and that the “complete footage” of the sting op would be sought. “The (IPL) General Council will meet on an emergent basis to review the footage and take appropriate strict action,” BCCI said. It is learnt that BCCI was contemplating meeting as early as Tuesday. The five players caught on camera include Team Hyderabad pacer T Sudhindra, formerly of the rebel ICL, who is shown confessing to having bowled a no-ball in a domestic game at the TV channel’s insistence and boasting that spot-fixing could be done at any level of Indian cricket, including IPL. Spot-fixing is common but the rates differ according to the standard of the game, the player apparently insisted. Cars and flats offered as baits to players Sudhindra also said franchisees were gifting players cars and flats since the IPL had capped remunerations for first-class players.Team Punjab’s left-arm pacer Shalabh Shrivastava is another former ICL player apparently caught on camera. He said franchisees, hampered by the Rs 30 lakh cap on domestic players, were paying some players an additional Rs 70 lakh in black money. He is also seen demanding Rs 10 lakh per no-ball for the IPL and claiming women were being used to befriend players before cajoling them into fixing games. Shrivastava added that “two or three” out of 10 players were vulnerable and that “everyone got offers”. Mohnish Mishra of Team Pune, also formerly of ICL, said Pune owners Sahara were paying him Rs 1.45 crore although the signed amount was only Rs 30 lakh. “Rs 45 lakh is white,” the player is seen saying on camera.Sahara immediately denied the allegations, issuing a statement: “Sahara denies that it has paid any amount in cash or otherwise to Mohnish Mishra or any other player, over and above the maximum amount permissible by BCCI for any such player. The statements made by Mohnish Mishra and Shalabh Srivastava are totally false and incorrect.”
This TV grab, released by India TV, shows Team Punjab’s Salabh Srivastava allegedly talking to the reporter conducting the sting
[From The Times of India-15.05.12]
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