Pakistan's senior judges, who conducted match-fixing inquiries in the past, yesterday said their recommendations to check corruption in cricket were ignored and that led to the latest betting scandal. A British judge on Thursday sentenced former captain Salman Butt to 30 months, fast bowler Mohammad Asif one year and Mohammad Amir to six months for their roles in fixing last year's Test against England. Their agent Mazhar Majeed received a 32-month jail term.
Pakistan conducted different inquiries on match fixing between 1994 and 2000 but the menace resurfaced during the tour of England last year. "When the young cricketers see a lot of money in the game they get distracted and go out of their minds to earn," said Justice retired Malik Mohammad Qayyum, who conducted a comprehensive inquiry between 1998 to 2000.
"It was because of that I recommended the Pakistan Cricket Board to check players' assets from time to time, but no action was taken. "Look at Amir, he is so young and talented, but had there been a proper check on him this case would not have happened."
Retired judge Fakhruddin Ibrahim said fixing was not new in international cricket. "It's old and endemic disease," Ibrahim told BBC Urdu. "Too much money has made the game a business and too much corruption has come in, and that's not confined to Pakistan only. It's a problem in India as well and other countries."