MATCH FIXING

MARCH 29 2007 16:07h

Pakistan Match Fixing Inquiry

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A former Pakistani High Court judge who held a detailed inquiry into the match-fixing scandal in Pakistan has criticised the game.

A former Pakistani High Court judge who held a detailed inquiry into the match-fixing scandal in Pakistan has criticised the game for not doing enough to root out the menace from the game.

Justice Malik Qayyum, who in 2000 recommended a life ban on former captain, Salim Malik for his involvement in match fixing, said a fresh inquiry must be held into allegations that Pakistan coach Bob Woolmer's death was due to a betting mafia.

"I feel now that perhaps all the hard work I did in confirming that match fixing took place in cricket has gone down the drain with Woolmer's death," Qayyum told Reuters on Thursday.

"I feel dismay and grief at his death and disappointment that not enough has been done to fight people involved in corruption in cricket," he said.

SHOCK DEFEAT

Woolmer, 58, was found lifeless in his room on March 18 the day after a shock defeat by debutants Ireland ensured an early World Cup elimination for Pakistan, the 1992 winners. He was pronounced dead later that day in hospital.

The following Thursday, police announced they were treating the death as murder.

Qayyum felt that if all the recommendations he made had been followed properly, cricket would not be facing such match-fixing allegations.

The former judge called for the Pakistan government to send its own investigation team to Kingston, Jamaica to look into the circumstances surrounding Woolmer's death and the reasons for Pakistan's shocking loss to Ireland.

"He was our coach and we must ourselves take steps to clear up any suspicions surrounding his mysterious death," said Qayyum.

"This defeat to Ireland must also be investigated properly," he added.

Qayyum held an 18-month long inquiry between 1998 and 2000 into allegations that some Pakistani players were involved in match fixing.

After questioning over 50 witnesses including players, officials, bookmakers and umpires, he recommended in his report that Malik be banned for life for his involvement in match fixing.

He also fined Wasim Akram, Waqar Younis, former Pakistan captain Inzamam-ul-Haq, Mushtaq Ahmed, Saeed Anwar and recommended to the Pakistan board not to give Wasim and current Pakistan assistant coach Mushtaq positions of responsibility again.

Qayyum said even though the ICC had set up its anti-corruption unit it needed to be more proactive in cleaning up the game.

"In Pakistan the board must follow the inquiry recommendation that assets of players must be checked annually to confirm their source of income."