South Africa cricket match fixing

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South Africa cricket match fixing refers to match fixing by South African cricket players during their tour to India led by Hansie Cronje in 2000.[1]

Timeline[edit]

On 7 April 2000, Delhi police Crime Branch officer Ishwar Singh Redhu revealed they had a recording of a conversation between Cronje and Sanjay Chawla, a representative of an Indian betting syndicate, over match-fixing allegations. Three other players, Herschelle Gibbs, Nicky Boje, and Pieter Strydom, were also implicated.

On 8 April 2000, the United Cricket Board of South Africa denied their players were involved in match-fixing. Cronje said "the allegations are completely without substance".[2] However, on 11 April Cronje was sacked as captain after confessing to Ali Bacher that he had not been "entirely honest". He admitted accepting between $10,000 to $15,000 from a London-based bookmaker for 'forecasting' results, not match fixing, during the recent one day series in India.

On 7 June, the King Commission began. The following day, Gibbs revealed that Cronje had offered him $15,000 to score less than 20 runs in the 5th ODI at Nagpur. He also admitted another offer of $15,000 to Henry Williams to concede more than 50 runs in that same match. Gibbs scored 74 off 53[3] balls and Williams injured his shoulder and couldn't complete his second over, so neither received the $15,000. Off-spinner Derek Crookes, who was also a witness, admitted being surprised to open the bowling at Nagpur.[4]

On 15 June, Cronje released a statement that revealed all his contact with bookmakers. In 1996 during the third Test in Kanpur, he was introduced to Mukesh Gupta by Mohammad Azharuddin. Gupta gave Cronje $30,000 to persuade the South Africans to lose wickets on the last day to lose the match. South Africa were 127/5 chasing 460, Cronje was already out and spoke to no other players. "I had received money for doing nothing." During the return tour, Cronje received $50,000 from Gupta for team information.

In the 2000 Centurion Test, Marlon Aronstam contacted him offering R500,000 for the charity of his choice together with a gift if Cronje declared and made a game of it. He also admitted asking Pieter Strydom to place a R50 bet on South Africa to win for him. After the match Aronstam visited Cronje, giving him two amounts of money (R30,000 and R20,000) together with a leather jacket. The promised R500,000 did not materialise. Before the one-day series, Cronje received repeated calls from "Sanjay" asking him to fix a match. Cronje gave him the names of Gibbs, Strydom and Boje to try to get rid of him. Cronje was offered $140,000 for the fifth ODI if Gibbs scored under 20, Williams went for more than 50 and South Africa scored around 270.[5]

On 28 August, Gibbs and Williams were suspended from international cricket for six months. Gibbs was fined R60,000 and Williams R10,000. Strydom received no punishment.[6]

On 11 October, Cronje was banned from playing or coaching cricket for life.[7] He challenged his life ban in September 2001 but on 17 October 2001, his application was dismissed.[8]

After 13 years on July 22, 2013 the Delhi Police registered an FIR for match-fixing in 2000, the chargesheet in the case involving a few South African cricketers including its former captain Hansie Cronje, was finally filed. The scandal is touted to be one of the biggest ever to have hit international cricket.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Cricket's biggest match-fixing scandal". Allvoices. 2 June 2012. Retrieved 2013-05-22. 
  2. ^ "United Cricket Board of South Africa statement on match fixing allegations". Cricinfo. 8 April 2000. Retrieved 21 October 2010. 
  3. ^ http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/match/64661.html
  4. ^ Robinson, Peter (8 June 2000). "Hansie offered me $15 000, says Gibbs". Cricinfo. Retrieved 21 October 2010. 
  5. ^ Robinson, Peter (15 June 2000). "Cronje finally comes clean". Cricinfo. Retrieved 21 October 2010. 
  6. ^ Robinson, Peter (28 August 2000). "Six-month bans for Gibbs, Williams". Cricinfo. Retrieved 21 October 2010. 
  7. ^ "Cronje banned for life". Cricinfo. 11 October 2000. Retrieved 21 October 2010. 
  8. ^ Robinson, Peter (17 October 2001). "Cronje remains an outcast". Cricinfo. Retrieved 21 October 2010.