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The BBC World Service's Andy Colquhoun
With a report
 real 14k

The BBC World Service's Telford Vice
Talks to Ian Payne about the consequences for Cronje
 real 14k

Former South African Test captain Keppler Wessells
"There was no other option"
 real 14k

Wednesday, 11 October, 2000, 16:10 GMT 17:10 UK
Cronje banned for life
Hansie Cronje: Banned from cricket for life
Hansie Cronje: Banned from cricket for life
Former South African captain Hansie Cronje has been banned from cricket for life by the United Cricket Board of South Africa (UCBSA) after he admitted receiving money from bookmakers.

"The UCBSA council hereby intends to ban Hansie Cronje for life from all activities of the UCBSA and its affiliates," a statement said.

The decision to ban the disgraced player came after he told the King commission, which is investigating allegations of corruption within the game, that he had taken approximately 100,000 in bribes on five separate occasions between 1996 and 2000.

He also admitted making cash offers to fellow team-mates Herschelle Gibbs and Henry Williams to perform badly.


I am saying to him, without excusing in any way what he has done if the allegations are proven to be right, that he can be a role model and turn this tragedy into triumph
  Nelson Mandela

The ban is likely to extend to all of the USBSA's cricketing activities and those of its associated bodies.

Suspension

Both Gibbs and Williams were banned for six months for their involvement in the Cronje scandal, but the suspension did not apply for domestic cricket.

The whole saga began last April when Delhi police revealed they had a recording of a conversation between Cronje and a representative of an Indian betting syndicate during the one-day series between India and South Africa in March.

Although he fiercely denied any claims of match fixing, Cronje informed UCBSA's managing director Ali Bacher that he had not been "entirely honest" and admitted to taking money for "forecasting" results.

Cronje later attributed his behaviour to the Devil after having "taken his eyes off Jesus" when Satan approached him.

During the King commission hearings, he was offered immunity from prosecution if he makes a full disclosure of his role in match-fixing.

Cross-examination

After three days of cross-examination, during which time he confessed to receiving $140,000, Cronje broke down in tears.

The scandal has rocked the whole nation and provoked former South African president Nelson Mandela, who met Cronje last week, into urging him to become a role model to young South Africans - despite his disgraced actions.

Mandela said: "I am saying to him, without excusing in any way what he has done if the allegations are proven to be right, that he can be a role model and turn this tragedy into triumph."

The King commission will resume hearings into the matter in November and is likely to make recommendations to the South African government by early December, according to sports minister Ngconde Balfour.

Cronje has seven days to respond to the ban.

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See also:

06 Oct 00 |  Cricket
Mandela takes Cronje to task
03 Oct 00 |  Cricket
Cronje hearing put back
18 Sep 00 |  Cricket
Cronje probe intensifies
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