Sunday, 29 August 2010

2010 Match-Fixing Scandal

Knee-jerk reaction is never altogether helpful in a matter like this.

However, listening to The World This Weekend on the Home Service this lunchtime, one heard exactly what the root of the problem was: How does a young Pakistani cricketer make a realistic wage in an industry where his place is subject to the whims of an unstable organization? Mihir Bose suggested that ready money from the gamblers trumped the graft of becoming a big star and gaining sponsorships.

Bose said that the problem was that international cricket 'lacked the teeth' to enforce the real change needed to end the repeated influence of gamblers on international cricket once and for all. He blamed the relaxed gentlemanly attitudes of the 'English club', as opposed to the French-style officiousness of other international sporting organizations such as FIFA. Then he suggested that the BCCI would never give up the power it wielded to an international body. So the end is that there is no solution.

I'd argue that if the problem is the distribution of income to players, then the solution rests in the players' hands, as the relaxed gentlemanly attitudes suggest. Basically, Pakistani cricketers need a strong players' organization to fight on their behalf to ensure that selection is stable and that the rewards of playing international cricket are sufficient that only those who are not sporting cricketers in the first place will be tempted by the gamblers.

In other words, a strong and powerful union, which will need to function at an international level to be effective.

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