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Last Updated: Sunday, 25 March 2007, 10:13 GMT 11:13 UK
Aspects of cricket games 'fixed'
Shaharyar Khan and Bob Woolmer
Khan said Woolmer had not told him of match-fixing concerns
The fixing of elements of cricket matches happens regularly, former Pakistan Cricket Board chairman Shaharyar Khan believes.

Spot-fixing is where the outcome of minor aspects of a game is fixed, for example the number of wides in a match or the score on an individual ball.

Khan told the BBC: "I think spot-fixing is very much prevalent and really something you cannot prevent.

"This is opposed to match-fixing which requires the whole team."

With the rise of spread-betting, in recent years it has become increasingly possible to bet on minor aspects of cricket matches.

But Khan, who resigned following Pakistan's forfeiture of the Oval Test match against England last August, said he would be very surprised if the current Pakistan team was involved in the throwing of an entire match.

He was speaking amid suggestions Pakistan coach Bob Woolmer was murdered because he was about to reveal allegations of match-fixing.

Bob never shared with me any doubts about match-fixing

Shaharyar Khan

Woolmer was found strangled in Jamaica on 18 March, a day after Pakistan suffered a shock loss to minnows Ireland in the Cricket World Cup - a result which knocked them out of the tournament.

Mark Shields, deputy Jamaica police commissioner who is leading the murder inquiry, confirmed his team would be looking at betting patterns during Pakistan's matches "as one of our lines of inquiry".

He told the Observer newspaper: "One aspect is, what were the odds on Ireland if Ireland won? I understand that they were extremely good if you bet on Ireland."

Khan, who was also a personal friend of Woolmer's, added: "Bob never shared with me any doubts about match-fixing.

"But this makes me feel that if something happened on that score it must have been after he left Pakistan for the Caribbean and during the two matches we lost to West Indies and Ireland.

"But I know this team and I do not think they would engage in match-fixing. They were the most morally upright team that I came across."

The England and Wales Cricket Board chairman David Morgan said he was surprised Khan spoke of the prevalence of spot-fixing as if it were a "fact of life".

He added: "I sit at ICC and hear annual reports from Lord Condon and it is very clear the Anti-Corruption and Security Unit is ever vigilant, so are member boards, and at no stage has spot-fixing been talked about as something that is prevalent in the game."

Inzamam was the unquestioned leader of his team

Shaharyar Khan

Khan also said Woolmer had revealed frustrations to him that he never felt in control of the Pakistan team - with captain Inzamam-ul-Haq considered the main man.

"There were a few confrontations (between Bob and his players)," Khan told BBC Five Live's Sportsweek programme.

"There was always a question mark regarding Bob Woolmer taking total control of the team.

"I think here there was resistance from Inzamam because Inzamam was the unquestioned leader of his team.

"They all fell in place around him and they were totally supportive of Inzamam.

"So I think Bob found it difficult sometimes if he was giving advice that may not be accepted at times by Inzamam.

"Bob felt he should have had full control but perhaps didn't."



SEE ALSO
Pakistan coach Woolmer was killed
23 Mar 07 |  Americas
Pakistan team fly out of Jamaica
25 Mar 07 |  Americas
'No threats of death' to Woolmer
23 Mar 07 |  Americas
Smith shines as West Indies win
13 Mar 07 |  Cricket


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