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Cricket's corruption to probe reprieve of Ponting as part of betting probe

Melbourne, Tue, 31 Aug 2010 ANI

Melbourne, Aug.31 (ANI): Cricket's corruption police is to examine whether Australian skipper Ricky Ponting had his career saved by a Pakistan blunder as part of an ongoing probe into a spot betting fix.


Over 80 international matches are to be investigated, and tainted fast bowler Mohammad Amir is coming under focus for dropping Ponting on 0 during January's Hobart Test.


Amir, who has been fingered as a key figure in the Pakistan scam of deliberately bowling no-balls under orders from fixers, was fielding at deep fine leg when he dropped a simple catch from Ponting.


Ponting had been having a shocking summer and was under pressure for his spot until Amir's incredible botch-up allowed him to resurrect his career with 209 in front of his home crowd.


The scandal is continuing to engulf cricket with former International Cricket Council boss Malcolm Speed insisting Pakistan must now be tossed out of world cricket, and Darren Lehmann calling for Pakistan cheats to be banned.


The third Test in Hobart, coming after the Test in Sydney which match-fixer and player manager Mazhar Majeed revealed was rigged, also had another bizarre moment that will be investigated.


Then captain Mohammad Yousuf was run out in diabolical scenes, launching an extraordinary attack on batting partner Salman Butt whom he described as selfish and lazy.


"We are not playing for self, we are playing for country," Yousuf said of Butt, the man who is now captain and alleged to be the ringleader of Pakistan's shady betting fixes.


Butt and other Pakistan players had their mobile phones confiscated in London as more corruption allegations surfaced, with Scotland Yard reportedly tipped off about match-fixing in the first Pakistan-England Test. (ANI)


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