Lorgat confident of corruption-free World Cup

Written by: Pti
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Abu Dhabi, Feb 7 (PTI) International Cricket Councilchief executive Haroon Lorgat has exuded confidence that theforthcoming World Cup will be a corruption-free eventfollowing punishments handed out to three Pakistan players forinvolvement in spot fixing.

The controversy had cast a shadow over the build-up tothe game''s flagship event but Lorgat said that corruption willnot be part of the tournament which will be hosted by India,Sri Lanka and Bangladesh from February 19 to April 2.

"I am confident (the World Cup will be free fromcorruption] for two reasons," Lorgat said.

"The main one is that the vast majority of players arehonest players. They do play the game in the spirit that itshould be played. They are not seeking to make gains out ofuntoward means.

"Secondly, we are alive to what could come to the fore interms of corruption. We have measures in place, and peopleforget we had been tracking this long before the ''News of theWorld'' had broken the story.

"I am satisfied we will have measures in place at theWorld Cup. We will increase capacity because we realise thingsdo change," Lorgat was quoted as saying by ''The National''.

An ICC Anti-Corruption tribunal had on Saturday bannedformer captain Salman Butt for 10 years, with five years ofsuspended sentence, Muhammad Asif for seven years with twoyears suspension and Muhammad Aamer for five years.

The tribunal, chaired by QC Michael Beloff, found thethree Pakistan players guilty of charges relating to spotfixing at the Lord''s Test match between England and Pakistanin August last year.

In addition, Butt was also found guilty of breaching theICC Anti-Corruption Code by failing to report an offer madeto him by Mazhar Majeed to engage in corrupt activity duringthe Oval Test during that series.

Lorgat said the ICC had increased the number of staffdetailed to police corruption in the game since the scandalbroke in August, and that they were now "more vigilant aroundleads we pick up".

He also revealed that the ICC has had discussions aboutrecommending the Indian government to legalise gambling insport.

The illegal gambling industry in Asia has been estimatedto be worth as much as USD 450 billion per year, the newspaperreported.

"I agree with the notion that if it is regulated it is alot better than if it is not regulated," he said. "We havemade inquiries and these are the things we are workingtowards." .

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