Need to remain vigilant: PCA to England players

Last Updated: Sep 01, 2010, 21:53 PM IST

London: The murky tale of bookmakers making advances towards players has prompted the England-based Professional Cricketers` Association to remind its players of the need to remain more proactive and vigilant.

In the wake of the latest spot-fixing scandal to hit the cricketing world, the PCA is also considering starting its own education programme to ensure young cricketers are aware of potential match-fixing dangers.

"We are currently reminding all the players of their responsibilities and may consider beginning our education programme at an earlier stage," Angus Porter, the PCA chief executive, said.

"Currently that only starts when a cricketer turns professional but we will give serious thought to going into the Academy system and there is the potential for an online training system to also be implemented," he told a cricket website.

World cricket was rocked by the spot-fixing scam last Sunday after `News of the World` posted a `sting operation` video showing an alleged fixer Mazhar Majeed predicting no-balls bowled by Mohammad Aamir and Mohammad Asif during the fourth Test against England at Lord`s.

British investigators are also probing the involvement of Pakistan skipper Salman Butt, from whose hotel room 50,000 pounds was recovered by police, and bowlers Mohammad Aamir and Mohammad Asif in the spot-fixing scam.

Porter said he is confident that the vast majority of the English game remains corruption-free.

"We are in no way complacent about the English game, but are confident it remains clean. It`s impossible to say these things never happen - and we are aware of approaches being made to players - but remain confident that the system we have in place works," Porter said.

Players have already been cautioned by the PCA in their use of social-networking sites such as Facebook and told not to divulge personal information that could be used by the bookies to make friendly approaches to players.

"We feel both the PCA and ECB are being proactive and vigilant to ensure the game stays clean in this country. The players understand the importance of being alert to situations and the fact we have had approaches reported to us shows the system works," Porter added.

PTI