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HindustanTimes Tue,30 Sep 2014

Cricket Columns

It all boils down to the individual
Amrit Mathur
May 18, 2013
First Published: 00:31 IST(18/5/2013)
Last Updated: 00:33 IST(18/5/2013)

The disgust and outrage over spot-fixing is justified because corruption destroys the foundation of sport and fair play. The outrage and anger in part is because cricket is so precious to us. And in a country as diverse as ours, cricket is fantastic glue.

Not that corruption and fixing is new to cricket. In the not so distant past it surfaced in the West Indies, England, Pakistan, India and other countries. That the present case is about players in the Twenty20 league, cricket's biggest tournament, is significant.

What is not well known is that strong anti-corruption protocols exist in the league. Before the start of each season, the Anti-Corruption and Security Unit meets with each team to remind players about its provisions and educates them about the need for exercising discretion at all times and maintaining integrity.

Stringent measures are also put in place to curb any misdemeanor. During matches, access to players is strictly controlled, the dressing room and dugouts are sanitised, made out-of-bounds even for team owners. Mobile communication is prohibited - only the team manager is allowed to carry a mobile - and CCTV's are installed in key areas.

Such vigilance is not just driven by the noble intent of preserving the purity of sport. The tournament is also a major commercial brand and the last thing it needs is a controversy of this kind.

But whatever steps are taken, beyond a point it boils down to the individual. It is the player who has to make the choice between right and wrong.

The writer is a Delhi Daredevils official


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