England cricket captain targeted in blackmail attempt

  • AP, London
  • Updated: Jan 22, 2015 22:12 IST

England one-day captain Eoin Morgan was the target of a recent blackmail attempt relating to a past relationship with an Australian woman, the team said Thursday.

The England and Wales Cricket Board said it received an email from an Australian man demanding a "five-figure sum" to prevent him from providing details to newspapers regarding a relationship Morgan had with a woman five years ago. The ECB said the man is now in a relationship with the woman.

"Following liaison with the Metropolitan Police (in London), our support team on the ground in Australia investigated the blackmail," the ECB said in a statement. "This involved approaching the man in question who, when confronted, admitted and apologised for his actions, blaming jealousy."

The England team and its officials are currently in Australia ahead of next month's World Cup. England opens a tri-series featuring Australia and India on Friday against the host nation in Sydney.

"We will not allow anyone to disrupt our team's preparation or performance in the tri-series and as we build up to the World Cup," ECB managing director Paul Downton said. "I am pleased that this issue has now been brought to a swift conclusion.

"At this point we'd like to thank the Metropolitan Police for their advice, which assisted us in dealing with this in the swiftest possible manner."

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