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Fans want ticket refund after 'spot-fixing' scandal

cricket Updated: Sep 01, 2010 18:04 IST
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Angry and disillusioned by the 'spot-fixing' allegations against Pakistani cricketers, upset fans here are demanding ticket refunds while sponsors are having second thoughts about their investment in the sport.

Fans are demanding ticket refunds in the wake of allegations of 'spot-fixing' against Pakistani players and the worst affected is Yorkshire where an England-Pakistan ODI match is being scheduled at Headingley on September 12.

"Reaction has been particularly marked in Yorkshire where large numbers of ticket holders have demanded a refund.

According to club officials the callers said they were furious about the betting allegations which has now turned into a drama involving at least four investigations, three of them criminal," a report in 'The Guardian' said.

"Other grounds staging games in the five-match series have also been affected by the scandal. It could also undermine ticket sales for the two Twenty20 Internationals in Cardiff. Neither of those games at 16,000-capacity Swalec Stadium are anywhere near to a sellout, with only 6,000 tickets sold for the second match on September 7. It seemed highly unlikely that there would be a last surge of interest in the fixture," it said.

Headingley will stage the second ODI and it was already guaranteed to be a sellout of about 17,000 before the 'News of the World' sting operation report broke out.

Yorkshire county's chief executive Stewart Regan said many fans will be watching the match reluctantly, having tried unsuccessfully to cancel their bookings in the wake of the 'spot-fixing' allegations.

"The phones in the club office haven't stopped ringing from people wanting to vent their fury and ask whether they can get refunds on the one-day international," Regan said.

"From the club's point of view, we can't give refunds simply because people have got a personal opinion about what's gone on, no matter how much we might agree with them. The club has sold tickets in good faith and, just as we understand the spectators' position, they appear to understand ours."