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Bangladesh to deport five Indians for betting on cricket

The Indian men were detained on Saturday at Dhaka’s Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium during a Bangladesh Premier League match

cricket Updated: Nov 20, 2017 23:51 IST
AFP, Dhaka
Bangladesh Premier League,Bangladesh cricket team,Bangladesh cricket Board
The Bangladesh Premier league has been dogged by betting allegations (Image for representation only)(BPL)

Bangladesh police said on Monday they would deport five Indians caught betting at a weekend cricket match as authorities crack down on illegal bookmaking in the lucrative domestic league.

The men were detained Saturday at Dhaka’s Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium during the Bangladesh Premier League match, police said.

READ | Bangladesh Premier league tackles illegal cricket betting with stadium raids

They were caught by cricket officials concerned about match-fixing and illegal gambling in the hugely popular league.

“We have handed them over to police as this is the most we could do. They will take further action,” said cricket board spokesman Jalal Yunus.

Two of the accused were previously caught betting during Bangladesh’s home series against England in October last year, he added.

READ | Muhammad Hafeez to skip Bangladesh Premier League and work on bowling action

Authorities were “in the process of deporting them to India”, said local police head Nazrul Islam.

Gambling is illegal in Bangladesh but the cricket league has been dogged by betting scandals and its first two editions were marred by a match-fixing controversy. involving players and team owners.

Last week nearly 80 spectators at two cricket grounds were thrown out on suspicion of betting. The alleged offenders -- including 10 Indians -- used mobile phones to place live bets before scores were broadcast on television and online.

A leading newspaper reported last week that betting on domestic cricket was rampant, with tea stalls, restaurants and rickshaw garages doubling as venues to place bets.

READ | Why Mashrafe Mortaza wore No. 0 jersey for Rangpur Riders in Bangladesh Premier League

The cricket board searches stadiums to catch gamblers but that has not stamped out the practice.

Last year the country’s communications regulator blocked a dozen gaming websites in a bid to curb betting on cricket.

Nearly 50 foreign cricketers, including Sri Lanka’s Lasith Malinga, the West Indies’ Chris Gayle, New Zealand’s Brendon McCullum and England’s Jos Buttler, are competing in the seven-team BPL tournament this year.

First Published: Nov 20, 2017 23:51 IST