Cricket will have to deal with another controversy before next month's World Cup. On Wednesday night, Nagpur Police Commissioner S.P.S. Yadav claimed the police had enough evidence to suggest that West Indian cricketer Marlon Samuels was in touch with a known bookie and had tried to fix the January 21 India-West Indies ODI in Nagpur.
Talking to the Hindustan Times, however, Yadav said there was no concrete evidence to suggest that the match was fixed.
Tony Deyal, the West Indies board's corporate communications officer, told HT from Antigua that these were "just rumours and we will act when we receive official communication from the Indian board or the ICC".
"We are dealing with the future of a young cricketer, and cannot do anything until we are sure of what the issue is," said Deyal. "We will investigate the issue thoroughly if and when we receive an official report."
Yadav said: "We always alert our officials whenever such matches are held in Nagpur and make a list. We made elaborate arrangements to tap (the phones of) suspected cricket bookies and finally got a clue from room number 206 of Hotel Pride." Indian and West India players had stayed at the hotel during their Nagpur stay.
Yadav said he had sent a letter in this regard to Shashank Manohar, a BCCI vice-president on Wednesday. Manohar, in Delhi for a BCCI meeting, said he was aware of the situation but had not received any letter.
An ICC spokesman told HT from Dubai that the organisation's Anti-Corruption Unit was looking into the matter. "But from what we know, there is no evidence yet to suggest match-fixing — merely that Samuels had contact with the persons the police were watching,” he said.