22 May 2014

Two Sussex cricket players charged with match fixing

Two Sussex county cricket players are charged by the English and Wales Cricket Board under its anti-corruption code.

Picture: Lou Vincent was at the centre of a separate global ICC investigation into matchfixing that was leaked to the media last week.

The former New Zealand batsman Lou Vincent has been charged with 14 offences relating to two matches he played for Sussex in August 2011 – a Twenty20 game against Lancashire and a 40-over clash with Kent.

Pakistani all-rounder Naved Arif has been charged with six offences relating to the same Kent game.

In the Kent game, Arif conceded 41 runs while not picking up any wickets in six overs, including two wides, while Vincent was run out for one off seven balls.

The charges mean both players have been provisionally suspended from all ECB-related cricket and could be banned for life if they are found guilty of match-fixing. Should they be found guilty, it would be the first proven case of the result of an English county game being fixed.

Picture: Naved Arif of Sussex bowls against Surrey at Horsham on June 6, 2012.

‘Complex investigation’

“This has been an extremely complex and lengthy investigation co-ordinated across many jurisdictions around the world,” Chris Watts, head of ECB’s Anti-Corruption unit, said in a statement,

“This matter is now the subject of formal legal proceedings and we will therefore make no further comment other than to re-iterate our determination to bring to account the very small minority who seek to corrupt cricket.”

ECB chief executive David Collier added: “The ECB has worked tirelessly in conjunction with the International Cricket Council’s ACSU [Anti Corruption and Security Unit] to bring about these charges, which once again demonstrates the ECB’s zero tolerance approach to corruption in our great game.”

35-year-old Vincent, who played 23 tests and more than 100 one-day internationals for New Zealand, has formerly given evidence to the International Cricket Council (ICC) about his inadvertent involvement in match-fixing in five countries

Mr Arif, a Pakistani left-arm seamer, joined Sussex in 2011 after playing league cricket for Rawtenstall and has continued to play league cricket in Staffordshire.

The charges come more than two years after the ECB inflicted similar proeedings against Danish Kaneria, the former Pakistan leg-spinner, for his involvement in spot-fixing in April 2012 which led to a life ban.