Taylor accepts being blackmailed for spot-fixing, to face ban Photograph:( AFP )
The 35-year-old cricketer shared a four-page statement on his official Twitter handle and captioned it, "To my family, friends and supporters. Here is my full statement. Thank you!" Details Inside:
Brendan Taylor, former Zimbabwe captain, has made heads turn with his glaring claim on Monday (January 24). The veteran keeper-batsman accepted that he was conned and bribed by an Indian businessman for spot-fixing matches at the international level during a visit to India in 2019.
In late 2019, Zimbabwe cricket was in dire straits. Their players were reeling under financial crisis as the Zimbabwe Cricket Board (ZNC) wasn't able to pay the national players. In addition, the International Cricket Council (ICC) had even suspended Zimbabwe after the ZCB was not able to keep out government’s interference with the board’s administration. Thus, Taylor was offered a visit to India amid all these uncertain times -- with regard to sponsorships and the potential launch of a T20 competition in the African nation.
Taylor revealed that while he was reluctant, he travelled to India for the sake of revamping his fortunes. However, he was offered drugs and blackmailed for spot-fixing international matches. While Taylor has revealed that he didn't fix any games, he is guilty of accepting the money and drugs.
The 35-year-old cricketer shared a four-page statement on his official Twitter handle and captioned it, "To my family, friends and supporters. Here is my full statement. Thank you!"
To my family, friends and supporters. Here is my full statement. Thank you! pic.twitter.com/sVCckD4PMV— Brendan Taylor (@BrendanTaylor86) January 24, 2022
Taylor narrated the whole incident and said, "In late October 2019, | was approached by an Indian businessman requesting that I attend India to discuss sponsorships and the potential launch of a T20 competition in Zimbabwe and was advised that | would be paid USD$15 000 to make the journey."
The veteran batter further revealed that the businessman and his colleagues had taken him for a dinner on the last night of his visit to the Asian country. "We had drinks and during the course of the evening they openly offered me cocaine, which they themselves engaged in, and | foolishly took the bait. I was handed the USD$15 000 but was told this was now a ‘deposit’ for spot fixing and that an additional USD$20 000 would be paid once the “job” was complete. I took the money so I could get on a plane and leave India. I felt I had no choice at the time because saying no was clearly not an option. All I knew was I had to get out of there," the Harare-born player claimed.
"It took me 4 months to report this offence and interaction to the ICC. I acknowledge this was too long of a time but I thought I could protect everyone and in particular, my family. I approached the ICC on my own terms and I hoped that if I explained my predicament, my genuine fear for our safety and wellbeing, that they would understand the delay. Unfortunately, they did not, but I cannot feign ignorance in this regard. I have attended many anti-corruption seminars over the years and we know that time is of the essence when making reports," Taylor further wrote.
Taylor has been a great servant of the game and a superstar in Zimbabwe cricket. The star batter, who has 2,320, 6,684 and 934 runs in Tests, ODIs and T20Is respectively, has also advised youngsters to not fall into such traps. He said, "I would like to place on record that I have never been involved in any form of match-fixing. I may be many things but I am not a cheat. My love for the beautiful game of cricket far outweighs and surpasses any threats which could be thrown my way."
Taylor is set to fan multi-year ban. The cricketer has already stated that he would accept ICC's decision after failing to report the serious matter on time.