Series to go on; ICC wants time, says Pawar

Zeecric Bureau

Mumbai: International Cricket Council chief Sharad Pawar said that Pakistan cricket team’s tour to England would continue without cancellation of the series, as the investigations into the match fixing allegations went on.

The ICC chief also said that there was no Indian link to the match-fixing controversy that has erupted.

“ICC wants more time, the series will go on. We cannot take any action till we get the prima facie report. We are waiting to get any decisive information from PCB or our anti-corruption bureau,” Pawar said.

The match-fixing scandal that has rocked Pakistan cricket grew in proportion today with reports emerging of more games being rigged prompting a shocked cricketing fraternity to demand life bans on guilty players.

"Until and unless the process of investigation is over, it is improper for me to react," Pawar told reporters in Mumbai.

"We have discussed it within the ICC and have decided that let us wait for the police`s investigation report. After that we have to take a viewpoint of the two Boards, the Pakistan Cricket Board and the England and Wales Cricket Board.”

"If this is established, there will be quite a serious view that will be taken by the Pakistan Cricket Board, the England Cricket Board and the ICC," he said.

The sting operation carried out by British tabloid `The News of the World`, which implicated seven Pakistani players including captain Salman Butt, has opened a Pandora`s box with fresh reports suggesting that the opening Test between England and Pakistan and the January Sydney Test between Pakistan and Australia could have been fixed.

The furore follows allegations that a bookie, Mazhar Majeed, arrested and later released on bail, bribed Pakistani pacers Mohammad Asif and Mohammad Aamir for `spot-fixing` to bowl no balls during the Lord`s Test against England, which the visitors lost by an innings and 225 runs.

While match-fixing involves rigging the outcome of a game, `spot-fixing` means manipulating events within a match.

Skeletons continued to tumble out in the saga with reports saying that the first Test between England and Pakistan in the just-ended series and Pakistan and Australia in Sydney in January were also fixed.

Another report claimed that the Pakistani players were found with cash exceeding their daily allowances during a Scotland Yard raid on Saturday night.

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