Pak HC shouldn’t comment on ‘spot-fixing’: Latif

Updated: Sep 04, 2010, 21:35 PM IST

Karachi: Pakistan`s High Commissioner in Britain Wajib Shamsul Hasan should not comment on the `spot-fixing` scandal involving three players of the country as his outbursts against the ICC could land the PCB in trouble, fears former Test captain Rashid Latif.

The former wicketkeeper-batsman also advised the PCB to not adopt a confrontational attitude towards the ICC over allegations of `spot-fixing` against the suspended trio of Test captain Salman Butt and pacers Mohammad Asif and Mohammad Aamir.

"I don`t think Wajid Shamsul Hasan should be making comments on purely cricket matters or even on legal matters involving the players and ICC. This is something only the PCB should be talking about," Latif said.

"He is a political man but in international cricket things work differently and the PCB should be the sole authority giving statements in this issue."

Latif felt the diplomat had misguided the Pakistani people and cricket fans with his comments that the scandal was a conspiracy to alienate the country.

The former captain, who played a key role in exposing the nexus between players and bookmakers in the 90s, said the PCB should have handled the issue differently.

"When it first broke out it was not such a serious issue and the matter could have been handled and resolved between the ICC and PCB without damaging the image of Pakistan cricket," Latif said.

"I blame the PCB for not reading the situation and not handling the issue particularly well. The board should have read the writing on the wall where the issue was now headed and how the media would react."

Latif also refused to condemn the players suspended on allegations of spot fixing.

"I don`t want to be judgmental because until now there are only allegations against them and from experience I know that it is very difficult to prove instances of fixing anywhere in the world. It is a fact that players have links with bookmakers and fixers but throughout the world cricket," he said.

Latif said by suspending the players, the onus was now on the ICC to prove the allegations had any substance.

"It is rather sad that whenever we go to England such controversies crop up. I think the PCB needs to do a lot of rethinking on how it is handling different issues and specially team matters. I don`t singularly blame Ejaz Butt for all problems as he has a entire set up working with him and they are equally responsible for any mess," Latif said.

PTI