I have played cricket fairly, says Mumbai batsman Hiken Shah
Altough the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has suspended Mumbai Ranji Trophy cricketer Hiken Shah for his involvement in corrupt activities, the 30-year-old said that even in his wildest dreams he would not dare to indulge in unlawful practices that can bring disrepute to the game.
Hiken Shah. Pic/mid-day archives
"I am completely shocked. Even in my dreams I would not think of anything (match-fixing related) like this. I am innocent and have always played my cricket fairly. I will never get involved in any unlawful activities," Shah told mid-day from United Kingdom where he is currently playing league cricket for Whalley Cricket Club in Lancashire.
Yesterday, the BCCI stated that Shah was found guilty of breaching the Board’s anti-corruption code for participants and has been suspended with immediate effect. The matter has now been referred to its disciplinary committee for further action.
What BCCI says...
"BCCI would wish to inform that Mumbai cricketer, Hiken Shah, has been suspended with immediate effect. He was found guilty of breaching BCCI’s Anti-Corruption Code for participants," BCCI secretary Anurag Thakur said in a statement.
"His involvement in any form of cricket, affiliated with the BCCI stands suspended till the time the disciplinary committee of the BCCI passes appropriate orders," it added.
The BCCI release stated that the inquiry commissioner found Shah guilty of "committing breach of Articles 2.1.1; 2.1.2; and 2.1.4 of the BCCI Anti-Corruption Code for participants and recommended their provisions to the BCCI President."
Shah clarified that he approached his Mumbai teammate Pravin Tambe, who plays for Rajasthan Royals, for coaching work and not to fix matches in the Indian Premier League-8. "I had met him (Tambe) for a coaching thing, but there was no talk of match-fixing or anything of that sort. I don’t know why he has said such things. We both had a good meeting and a few laughs as well. I don’t know what was in his mind. I don’t know what went wrong," said Shah.
Is there a possibility of any misinterpretation? "It could be, " Shah said.
Shah added that the BCCI’s ACSU had called him a few months ago to hear his side of the story. "I explained to them what we had spoken. I don’t know what is going on," he said.
BCCI’s suspension has now forced Shah to return to India as soon as possible. "I will soon come to India now. I will face whatever is happening. I don’t know as of now, but I will challenge the matter in court, if required," Shah signed off.
2.1.1 Fixing or contriving in any way or otherwise influencing improperly, or being a party to any effort to fix or contrive in any way or otherwise influence improperly, the result, progress, conduct or any other aspect of any Match or Event.
2.1.2 Seeking, accepting, offering or agreeing to accept any bribe or other Reward to fix or to contrive in any way or otherwise to influence improperly the result, progress, conduct or any other aspect of any Match or Event.
2.1.4 Soliciting, inducing, enticing, instructing, persuading, encouraging or facilitating (a) any Participant to commit an offence under any of the foregoing provisions of this Article 2.1 and/or (b) any other person to do any act that would be an offence if that person were a Participant.