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Anti-fixing measures a dampener for fans

cricket Updated: Sep 28, 2013 02:25 IST
Khurram Habib
Khurram Habib
Hindustan Times
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At a time when poor turnout at domestic cricket events is leading to calls for hosting matches in Tier II centres, the spot-fixing scandal is further alienating the stars, who are rarely seen on the domestic circuit, from their fans.

While the turnout at the Challenger Trophy has been impressive, with Abhinav Mukund terming the turnout the biggest at a domestic event in years, fans have been struggling for even a proper view, leave alone autographs of even domestic players.

Thanks to the scandal, players in domestic cricket are now being closely guarded.

Two Anti-Corruption Unit officials have been posted here and the Players and Match Officials Area (PMOA) is marked with a hotline number pasted on it.

"That is to ensure, if in case anybody sees a mishap or anything suspicious, he can contact us," said an ACU official on duty.

No mobiles
Their job begins with checking everything in the PMOA and seeing to it that no electronic devices are switched on.

"It is a bit different from what it was. We can't just walk in like we would do earlier. The security is because of the stars, but it has been upped mainly because of the recent scandals.

"Of course, no mobile phones are allowed inside the PMOA," said an official on duty.

The Board has also ensured that a team stays on the same floor in the hotel to keep a tab on the visitors.