Mashrafe on thin ice? | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, February 14, 2012 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:00 AM, February 14, 2012


Mashrafe on thin ice?

Mashrafe Bin Mortaza could be in hot water since the primary investigation of his spot-fixing allegations almost entirely hinges on his statement.
The former national captain had revealed to two Bangla dailies last week that a fellow cricketer had approached him with a spot-fixing offer during the Bangladesh Premier League (BPL). After his claims, the governing council of the T20 competition launched an investigation into the matter appointing a four-member committee that is speaking to those named in the incident.
At this stage, it is Mashrafe's words against those of the accused. It was learned that the committee has had sittings with the former cricketers, who have delivered varied statements. A source has disclosed that while one of them has laughed off the allegation as a joke, another had an emotional breakdown in front of the panel. One of the accused has also refused point-blanked the claims, saying such an incident (ex-players meeting Mashrafe in the Bangladesh Biman dressing room earlier this month) never took place.
Sirajuddin Mohammad Alamgir, BPL governing council secretary, said that the public statement before proper investigation is now appearing to be the biggest obstacle.
"You can't tell the media without going through proper investigation," said Alamgir yesterday. "When it goes out in public, the truth of the allegation may not be ascertained beyond doubt."
"The names he [Mashrafe] has taken, it has put those individuals' lives and social standing in doubt. As a result, Mashrafe has to take responsibility. I still believe he could have told us first before the media," explained the BCB director who said that by divulging key information, Mashrafe has breached the board's code of conduct.
There is no doubt that the matter is now delicately poised but the BCB has little to do in this enquiry. They will pass on the statements to the government's investigation authorities but still, the board will punish those in the wrong.
"We have already said that we will not tolerate spot-fixing. If the information is correct, we will make an example out of them," said Alamgir, before adding: "In the same vein, Mashrafe will be rewarded for letting out this matter. But if he's wrong, he will be punished."
The spot-fixing allegations have obviously become the sole talking point and with every odd occurrence during the BPL matches, the doubt becomes stronger that certain individuals could well be involved in spot-fixing by spread-betting. If the accuser and that too someone of Mashrafe's stature had taken the proper route by going to the ACSU officials directly, the investigation could have gone deeper into this mess.

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