ICC investigating Galle pitch-fixing charges; urges documentary makers to share 'all evidence and supporting material'

An advance report on the documentary, which will be broadcast on Sunday, said two Sri Lankans and a former Indian player were caught discussing how to rig England's opening Test against Sri Lanka in November.

AFP, May 26, 2018 16:54:41 IST

Colombo: The International Cricket Council (ICC) said on Saturday it was investigating allegations that a Sri Lankan groundsman had agreed to tamper with the pitch to alter the result of an upcoming Test match against England.

The ICC said it took the allegations reported in an Al Jazeera documentary "very seriously" and urged "all evidence and supporting material" to be shared with the investigators.

ICC investigating Galle pitch-fixing charges; urges documentary makers to share all evidence and supporting material

Representative photo. Reuters

An advance report on the documentary, which will be broadcast on Sunday, said two Sri Lankans and a former Indian player were caught discussing how to rig England's opening Test against Sri Lanka in November.

“We have already launched an investigation working with anti-corruption colleagues from member countries based on the limited information we have received," the ICC said in a statement.

It also called for the immediate release of any evidence and supporting material to enable the anti-corruption unit to "undertake a full and comprehensive investigation".

The London-based Daily Telegraph said late Friday that the Al Jazeera footage seen by the newspaper featured Robin Morris, a former professional cricketer from Mumbai, India, Tharindu Mendis, a player from Colombo, and Tharanga Indika, an assistant manager at Galle International Stadium.

The newspaper reported that the footage showed the men talking about doctoring pitches during a meeting with an undercover reporter.

The men were reportedly discussing ways to prepare the pitch to ensure that the first Test at the Galle ground would not end in a draw and would yield a result in less than four days.

Sri Lanka's cricket board said it was aware of the allegations and was planning on issuing a statement.

The former curator of the Galle International Stadium, Jayananda Warnaweera, is already under an ICC ban for three years until January 2019 for failing to cooperate with an anti-corruption investigation.

Warnaweera, a former Test player, had failed to attend interviews with the ICC's anti-corruption unit. He had been previously handed a two-year ban by the local board over the same allegations.

Sri Lankan players and umpires have been accused of match fixing in the past, but Warnaweera is the highest ranking official punished so far.

Although no big-name Sri Lankan player has ever been convicted of corruption, several former stars have made allegations of either match fixing or spot-fixing — when players deliberately bowl or field badly to give away a set number of runs.

Updated Date: May 26, 2018 16:54:41 IST






Rank Team Points Rating
1 India 4027 115
2 New Zealand 2829 109
3 South Africa 2917 108
4 England 4366 104
5 Australia 3270 99
6 Sri Lanka 3795 95
Rank Team Points Rating
1 England 6745 125
2 India 7071 122
3 New Zealand 4837 112
4 Australia 5543 111
5 South Africa 5193 110
6 Pakistan 4756 97
Rank Team Points Rating
1 Pakistan 7365 283
2 England 4253 266
3 India 8411 263
4 Australia 5471 261
5 South Africa 4407 259
6 New Zealand 4784 252