‘Players are just pawns’ - Former Pakistan skipper Rashid Latif says board members may be involved in fixing

WION Web Team New Delhi, Delhi, India Apr 10, 2020, 05.37 PM(IST)

Rashid Latif Photograph:( AFP )

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Former Pakistan captain Rashid Latif has said cricket boards have always supported players accused of fixing while adding that players are mere pawns in the big game and are being utilized by the top board members. Latif further said the board has a larger role to play in fixing. 

Former Pakistan wicket-keeper and captain Rashid Latif, who has been pretty vocal against spot-fixing, has said cricket boards have always supported players accused of fixing while adding that players are mere pawns in the big game and are being utilized by the top board members. Latif further said the board has a larger role to play in fixing. 

While it is unclear whether Latif’s comments were directed towards Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) as they are in the headlines due to the ongoing Umar Akmal controversy. The PCB had charged Akmal with two breaches of Article 2.4.4 of the PCB Anti-Corruption Code in two unrelated incidents while suspending him before the start of Pakistan Super League.

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“The cricket boards have always given support to players accused of fixing. We always blame the players. Yes, they are involved in fixing. But are cricket authorities not to be blamed as well,” Rashid Latif said in a video on a Youtube channel ‘Caught Behind’.

Latif went on to claim that ICC’s Anti-Corruption Unit ask the players to stay away from bookies but don’t take any concrete steps to stop it.

“I won’t completely blame a player for fixing. Players are just pawns, they are being utilised by the top board members. The board has a larger role to play in fixing,” he said.

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The former Pakistan international said if no board member is involved then they will always punish the guilty player but added that some members of the board who have been placed due to political influence are involved.

“If no member from the board is involved, then they will always punish a player. But the top officials of the boards, or some members of the boards who have been placed by political contacts, are somewhere involved, and hence, players always get protected,” he added.

“Every cricket board all over the world, have protected their players. Every country has protected their players who were found fixing matches. This is why the window of T20 cricket and franchise cricket had to be created to tell players that do whatever you want to do here, don’t do it in international cricket,” Latif went on to add.