Lord Condon: It's time to ban cheating teams from world cricket
Countries who lack the resolution to deal with corrupt cricketers should be barred from the sport the first head of the International Cricket Council (ICC) anti-corruption unit Lord Condon told the BBC yesterday. The 64-year-old former head of the Metropolitan Police, who became the first head of the unit in 2000 following the matchfixing scandal involving then South African captain Hansie Cronje, added that the ICC also had to get tougher with their punishments.
Condon, who was suucceeded by former Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) chief Sir Ronnie Flanagan, was speaking following the prison sentences handed down in London on Thursday to three Pakistani cricketers and their agent Mazhar Majeed for spotfixing in last year's test series agaisnt England.
Pakistani cricket fans hold a burning effigy of London's Southwark Crown
Court judge Jeremy Cooke during a protest in Lahore on Friday. Pic/AFP
"The ICC has to give out the harshest sentences it can," he said. "The nuclear option is banning boards from international cricket. The ICC must get tougher. This is a big wake-up call. Cricket is at a credibility crossroads.
"The ICC and national boards have to be tough and, if they are not, they have to face the consequences."
Lord Condon, who stepped down in June last year, said the three cricketers -- former captain Salman Butt and pace bowlers Mohammad Asif and Mohammad Amir -- deserved to go to jail. The trio received five year bans from the sport from the ICC in February. "They deserved the sentences they got," said Lord Condon.