The ICC should thoroughly investigate the spot-fixing scandal and take appropriate action against players who are found guilty, according to batting icon Sachin Tendulkar, who was today conferred the honorary rank of Group Captain by the Indian Air Force.
The champion batsman also threw his weight behind the youngsters in the Indian team, who failed miserably during the tri-series in Sri Lanka, but asked them to minimise mistakes and learn to respond to situations swiftly.
Tendulkar said he was disappointed with the spot-fixing incident and felt if the scam, which has come to light after an "expose" by a British tabloid, turns out to be true it will bring "disrepute to the game".
"ICC should make a thorough probe in whatever had happened in England and take appropriate action if the players are found guilty. If the allegations are true, they will certainly bring disrepute to the game," Tendulkar told reporters.
"I am no expert and not the one to comment while sitting here in India on something which happened in England. But certainly it has disappointed me," he said when asked to comment on the latest crisis to have rocked the game.
"Integrity is extremely required to take the game forward and make it more globalised. It is important to have a clean image so that cricket heads in the right direction and I am sure ICC will take every measure to ensure the game moves in the right direction," he added.
Asked if he had heard of any Indian player being approached by bookmakers, Tendulkar said he had never come across any such instance. "No, in my 21 years of international cricket, I have never heard of any Indian player being approached by bookies," said Tendulkar, who was speaking at a media interaction at the sidelines of a photo exhibition to celebrate his 21 years in international cricket.
The Indian icon also backed the young cricketers in the Indian team, who failed to make a mark in Sri Lanka. The Indian youngsters, including Suresh Raina, Virat Kohli, Dinesh Karthik and Rohit Sharma fared poorly in Sri Lanka and it was only Virender Sehwag's heroics that steered India to the final.
But Tendulkar contended that the young players cannot be labelled as incompetent on the basis of just one bad tour. "The guys have done well. Just in the last tour, the graph was up and down. Sehwag batted exceptionally well and matches just rallied around him. "But the youngsters will have to understand that they will have to play around the batsman or bowler, who are in good nick.
They will be asked to play supportive role and they will have to start picking those signals," Tendulkar said on the sidelines of a IAF function to confer the honorary rank of group captain on him.