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Thursday, 4 May, 2000, 14:05 GMT 15:05 UK
Cricket under the microscope
Cronje
Hansie Cronje: Captained his side in the fifth Test against England
BBC News Online's Thrasy Petropoulos takes a closer look at four matches shrouded in controversy, following cricket's match-fixing scandal.

  • South Africa v England, Centurion (fifth Test) 14-18 January 2000

    The only fruit for England's labour in South Africa. With England two-nil down in the series and seemingly thwarted by the rain in the final Test, Hansie Cronje surprised everyone - including his team-mates - by suggesting a one-innings match.

    It was the first time in Test history that a match had seen a double-forfeiture in an attempt to contrive a result.

    South Africa declared their first innings on 248-8 and then watched England pass their target in the final over of the match with two wickets in hand. Alec Stewart set the ball rolling with 73 but the innings of the match was from Michael Vaughan, whose 69 was his first major contribution in Test cricket.

    The umpires and Nasser Hussain have insisted that they detected nothing untoward in Cronje's offer, but team-mate Daryll Cullinan said: "I would like to think that Hansie was acting in the best interests of the game and doing something for the public.

    "But it totally went against the guy I knew. He wasn't in the habit of giving something to the other side or making a game of it."

    Cronje said he was disappointed at the "whispers" coming out of the ICC at the suggestion that he had acted outside the spirit of the game.

  • Pakistan v Bangladesh, World Cup, 31 May 2000

    One of the most extraordinary results in cricket history. Pakistan, eventual World Cup finalists, crumbled to defeat by 62 runs against Bangladesh, who had never come close to felling a major power before, in a match that mattered little in terms of qualification for the second stage.

    After watching Bangladesh score 223 in their 50 overs - both Shoaib Akhtar and Azhar Mahmood went wicketless in eight overs for 30 and 56 runs respectively.

    Pakistan collapsed to 161 all out. Saeed Anwar, Shahid Afridi, Ijaz Ahmed and Inzamam-ul-Haq, Pakistan's top four, managed 18 runs between them.

    Wisden's report at them time said: "Since this was a completely dead match, accusations of match-fixing rang louder again. English bookmakers had rated Pakistan 33 to 1 on, and there were no reports of unusual betting, but inevitably there were rumours about the subcontinent's illegal bookmakers."

  • England v Pakistan, Sharjah, 12 April 1999

    Rumours have surrounded tournaments in Sharjah as long as cricket has been played in the United Arab Emirates, where Adam Hollioake, as England's one-day captain, was apparently once given the chance to be made a millionaire if he complied with certain wishes.


    Hollioake
    Adam Hollioake: Didn't play in Sharjah
    But Hollioake was not involved in a match that should be investigated for impropriety, England's fourth game of a triangular tournament before the World Cup last year.

    An England team caught up in a row over contracts had lost their first three matches against Pakistan and India, and had been condemned to elimination before they took on Pakistan in a day-night match.

    The form book, which suggested a heavy England defeat, was completely turned on its head. England, at one stage 86-5, reached 206, chiefly through a seventh-wicket partnership of 50 between Fairbrother and Ealham.

    Shahid Afridi bowled four overs of his occasional leg-breaks while Wasim Akram, who was unplayable at times during the tournament, bowled only seven overs for 25.

    In reply, Pakistan, who had been docked two overs for a slow over-rate, stumbled to 144 all out and defeat by 62 runs.

  • Zimbabwe v Pakistan, Harare, January 1995

    This was Zimbabwe's first ever Test victory. And after somehow batting through the best part of two days at the Harare Sports Club, Zimbabwe reached 544-4 declared against a bowling attack which included Wasim Akram and Aaqib Javed.

    Grant Flower (201 not out) put on 269 with brother, Andy (156), followed by an unbeaten 233 with Guy Whittall (113 not out). A total of 22 no-balls and three wides were bowled in the innings.

    In reply, Pakistan could only manage 322 all out and, asked to follow on, they slumped to 158 all out and defeat by an innings and 64 runs. At one stage they were 35-5 and 103 of their runs came from just two batsmen.

    Although he was not referring specifically to this match, Zimbabwe captain Andy Flower recently said: "When we've beaten teams over the past few years, we've asked ourselves, 'Did that look a bit dodgy?' These things are obviously going on."

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    See also:

    28 Apr 00 | Cricket
    Lewis stands by 'fixing' claims
    27 Apr 00 | Cricket
    The ECB findings in full
    03 May 00 | Cricket
    Corrupt cricketers face life bans
    20 Apr 00 | Cricket
    A scandal in the making
    23 Apr 00 | Cricket
    Bacher to reveal 'fixed' matches
    19 Apr 00 | Cricket
    'Cronjegate': A timeline
    Links to other Cricket stories are at the foot of the page.