Send guilty players to jail: Jennings

Updated: Sep 01, 2010, 14:26 PM IST

Johannesburg: Former South Africa coach Ray Jennings feels that if any cricketer is found to be involved in the recent spot-fixing scandal, they should be imprisoned for violating the sanctity of the game.

"Fingers have been pointed for some years now at Pakistani players. If it`s found that these players are guilty, a good example should be made of them and they should get prison sentences," said Jennings.

"Even lifelong bans would not be good enough for me. All that such players do is to cause great damage to cricket. There is nothing that irritates me more than when the game is threatened by such allegation. There must be something brewing," Jennings told a daily.

Jennings, currently coach of the Indian Premier League team Bangalore Royal Challengers, said the public could not be blamed when they begin doubting everything in cricket.

"All that these crooks succeed in is that every result that is determined by a last ball or a last over gets questioned.”

"The seed of doubt is planted and even if something is then genuine, there will now be questions about whether something strange was not happening. Cricket does not need this," he said.

Jennings was of the opinion that those who engaged in match fixing jeopardised the hard work of all the other innocent players put into the game.

"I feel that betting on individual things in a match should be stopped immediately - that`s the only way that can regulate it to some extent," he said.

A spot-fixing scandal recently rocked international cricket after a sting operation by a British tabloid claimed that deliberate no-balls were bowled by two Pakistan pacers - Mohammad Asif and Mohammad Aamir - during the fourth Test against England at Lord`s.

Scotland Yard detectives had also visited the Pakistan dressing room after the third day`s play to take statement of some players, including skipper Salman Butt.