Zeenews Sports Bureau
New Delhi: Mazhar Majeed, the bookie who was in the news for his alleged role in Pakistan’s spot-fixing controversy, has now claimed to have access to leading Indian cricketers-batsman Yuvraj Singh and spinner Harbhajan Singh.
Majeed was heard telling the undercover reporter of the now defunct tabloid News of the World, which broke the spot-fixing story involving Pakistani players-Salman Butt, Mohd Aamir and Mohd Asif- that he had access to several current and former cricketers from across the world.
The bookie dropped the names of Yuraj and Harbhajan in a recorded conversation played out by undercover reporter Mazhar Mahmood during the fourth day of the trial of Pakistani cricketers in the Southwark Crown Court.
The reporter further claimed that Majeed also mentioned the names of West Indies` Chris Gayle and Australia`s Ricky Ponting and Brett Lee. He, however, did not elaborate on the details.
Majeed also described former IPL chairman Lalit Modi as a ‘good friend’. According to him, Mike Gatting, Phil Tufnell, Geoffrey Boycott and Imran Khan are also his good friends.
Mahmood gave evidence behind a screen after the judge made an order banning publication of descriptions of his appearance or sketches because the journalist feels his security could be compromised.
Meanwhile, Butt and Asif pleaded not guilty to charges of conspiracy to obtain and accept corrupt payments, and conspiracy to cheat at gambling.
Prosecutors said at the opening of the trial last week that the pair had agreed to bowl no-balls as part of a spot-fixing deal.
Young Pakistan bowler Mohammad Aamer and bookie Majeed have also been charged with the same offences but are not standing trial alongside Butt and Asif. The judge has told the jury there is "nothing sinister" in their absence.
Meanwhile, Yuvraj Singh has rubbished the allegations and termed it as baseless. Reacting to the allegations, he has written on the micro-blogging site Twitter, “And who is majid!! absolute rubbish! Don't no never met!”
“The problem in India is if some one says a rooster has given an egg it will become news !! Whether its true or not it doesn't matter,” he wrote.