Cricket’s governing body has opened an investigation into scoring incidents in yesterday’s third one-day international between England and Pakistan.
The International Cricket Council said in a statement today it started the probe after receiving information from a U.K. newspaper. Pakistan won the game at the Oval in central London by 23 runs.
“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,” ICC President Haroon Lorgat said in the statement.
“We therefore feel it is incumbent upon us to launch a full enquiry into this particular game,” Lorgat said. “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.”
The ICC didn’t give specific details of any incidents in question.
The England and Wales Cricket Board later said in a statement it had been given confirmation that no England players or members of management are involved.
Following a board meeting today, the ECB said it has asked the ICC for assurances that the governing body does not have evidence which could result in charges or suspensions of players prior to the conclusion of the five-match series.
“The EBC board noted that the ICC is not stating as fact that anything untoward has occurred nor has yet been proven,” the ECB statement said. “Until the ICC substantiates that any allegations are correct, no further action can be taken.”
Pakistan Cricket Board chairman Ejaz Butt refuted the Sun newspaper report.
“These are meaningless allegations without any proof,” Butt was quoted as saying by the Times of India. “The ICC has not got in touch with us on any such accusation. That is total imagination. There is no truth to it.”
Last month, three members of the Pakistan team were questioned by police and had their mobile phones taken after the News of the World newspaper said that they were involved in an alleged betting scam during the fourth Test against England in London. A 35-year-old man was also arrested “on suspicion of conspiracy to defraud bookmakers” and later released.
The three players, captain Salman Butt and fast bowlers Mohammad Asif and Mohammad Amir, were suspended by the ICC. They maintained their innocence and were sent home from the remainder of the team’s tour of England.
England leads the one-day series 2-1 with the fourth match at Lord’s in London in two days.