The match-fixing scandal continued to haunt world cricket with the ICC today launching an investigation into Friday's Pakistan-England ODI after reports emerged that certain scoring patterns in the game were rigged by "illegal betting syndicates in India and Dubai."
The ICC probe follows claims by British tabloid The Sun that bookies knew details of Pakistan's innings before the match even began and it had given the evidence to the game's governing body ahead of the game.
Immediately after the news came out, the ICC said in a statement that the investigation is warranted as information about a certain scoring pattern appeared to be "correct".
The Pakistan Cricket Board, however, rejected the reports, saying that there is "no truth" in them. "The ICC has launched an investigation into activities that took place during the third One-Day International between England and Pakistan at The Oval, London, on September 17," the governing body said.
"Following information received by the ICC from a British newspaper and its source, the ICC now believes a full investigation is warranted," it added.
Pakistan won the match by 23 runs to keep their hopes alive in the five-match series after losing the first two games. According to the newspaper, the scoring pattern of the game matched with the "target that bookies had been told in advance by a fixer."
"Illegal bookies in India and Dubai apparently knew in advance what would happen so they could launch a betting coup. But The Sun's undercover team was able to pass details to ICC inspectors before the match began," the report said.
ICC CEO Haroon Lorgat thanked the tabloid for providing the information and said the evidence on table demands an inquiry. "A source informed The Sun newspaper that a certain scoring pattern would emerge during certain stages of the match and, broadly speaking, that information appeared to be correct," Lorgat said.
"We therefore feel it is incumbent upon us to launch a full inquiry into this particular game although it is worth pointing out at this stage that we are not stating as fact that anything untoward has occurred.
Only in the fullness of the investigation can that be established. "We thank The Sun newspaper for its information and cooperation in this regard and we will work with its staff and sources to ensure the full truth surrounding this match is ascertained," he added.