Guilty verdict must trigger change

Andy Lloyd
IT’S CERTAINLY no exaggeration to hail yesterday’s dramatic events at Southwark Crown Court as a watershed and landmark moment in cricket’s rich history.

The guilty verdicts handed down to Salman Butt and Mohammad Asif – allied to the news that Mohammad Amir had admitted wrongdoing back in September – must surely act as the ultimate deterrent to any cricketer tempted to indulge spot-fixing.

It’s one thing losing your livelihood and being kicked ot of your profession, but another thing entirely to risk a custodial sentence for financial gain.

Sadly, however, I suspect this is merely the tip of the iceberg and rather than celebrate justice being done, I sincerely hope it triggers a more decisive approach from the International Cricket Council’s anti-corruption unit to rooting out the cancer eating away at the game.

I would suggest the ICC need to become more pro-active and innovative in their methods of catching the culprits, after all it’s worth remembering that the Pakistani trio have been brought to justice largely as a result of an undercover newspaper investigation.

It would be wrong also to presume this is a problem that extends only to the subcontinent and I trust the authorities will not be so parochial in their ongoing attempts to make cricket a cleaner sport.