Zardari happy at ICC clean chit to Oval ODI

Karachi: President Asif Zardari on Wednesday said he is pleased that the International Cricket Council has cleared the England-Pakistan Oval ODI from fixing charges.

The ICC today said after its executive board meeting in Dubai that there was no "compelling evidence" into allegations that the Oval ODI between England and Pakistan was fixed.

"The President is pleased that that no evidence had been found to substantiate allegations of match fixing in the one day international cricket match," Presidential spokesman Farhatullah Babar said.

The match, that Pakistan won by 24 runs, was investigating after British tabloid `The Sun` provided some information to the world governing body.

Zardari in his statement also congratulated the Chairman of the PCB and the national team players.

Babar said the ICC finding had also vindicated the position taken by the President from the very beginning that no action can be taken until the inquiry was completed.

"It is a reminder that one should neither rush to judgements nor yield to pressure for taking swift and thoughtless actions against anyone without due process and without fair and independent investigations," Babar said in the statement on behalf of the President.

The ICC investigation into the match had led to a serious dispute between the Pakistan and English cricket boards after PCB chief Ijaz Butt had said that he heard reports from bookmakers that English players too were involved in fixing matches.

The ECB shot a letter to the PCB on behalf of its players asking Butt to either submit an unconditional apology or he would be sued by them.

Butt while visiting London recently in a dramatic U-turn withdrew his statement and also released a statement in which he reiterated that the PCB had no evidence of any English player being involved in fixing and said his statement had been misunderstood.

Butt has been facing lot of criticism for his handling of cricket affairs but the President apparently still continues to back him.

PTI

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