Sentencing on the infamous four takes place tomorrow and I have to say that I honestly don’t think there is anything else that could come out of this extraordinary saga that would surprise me.
Prior to Tuesday, I thought I had heard it all. But what has come out since the end of the trial is nothing short of staggering.
None of the men were ever going to come out of this trial with much if any credibility or dignity, but they at least could have tried. But what we have seen is all four basically knifing the others in an attempt to safe their own weasel skin. It has been an appalling show from all concerned.
On Tuesday night I thought that the fact that Mohammad Amir had previously confessed would get him off the hook from going to prison, then on hearing the judge’s summing up on Wednesday, I’m now not so sure. Amir’s admission that he was merely a stupid boy who just got talked into bowling a couple of no-balls was torn to pieces by a judge who clearly doesn’t believe him, as it now looks like he was playing an active part in attempting to fix the Oval test match.
Butt and Asif have been blaming each other while pleading their innocence, while all along Amir and agent, Mazhar Majeed had pleaded guilty. This makes the pair look pathetic and gutless, not only do they not have the decency to admit what they have done, they are trying to blame each other in an attempt to get themselves off the hook. The arrogance and stupidity of Butt and Asif is astounding.
Then today we were treated to agent Mazhar Majeed’s attempts to blame everyone else. He didn’t just single out Salman Butt as the man who got him involved in fixing, oh no, he then claimed that he gave Mohammad Asif £65,000 for his part in the no-balls.
Now lets get this into prospective. He claimed that Butt got paid £10,000 for his part, and Butt was supposed to be the person who got Majeed involved in fixing, so to pay Asif a staggering £55,000 more than he gave Butt also makes his version of events seem a little hard to swallow to me.
But then we hear the reasons why Asif was supposed to be so expensive, because apparently he was a man in demand in the Pakistan dressing room. If he wasn’t looked after he might jump ship to the other fixers within the Pakistani set up.
Just who and what can the judge believe here? I can’t wait to hear his summing up tomorrow.
On top of all this we also hear more revelations, that apparently Wahab Riaz and Kamran Akmal were very closely linked to this, and that they are now likely to face investigation from ICC over whether or not they were in any way involved.
The name of Kamran Akmal brings me onto my next point about suspicions of believing that what you are seeing is really true and honest.
If I was Stuart Broad I would want to get another hundred at Lord’s because I would be far from convinced in my own mind about the validity of the century he scored in that test.
I would also be very suspicious of the outcome of the infamous test match in Sydney in January 2010, where Kamran dropped Mike Hussey how many times in the 2nd innings, as Pakistan (possibly) contrived to lose a test match that was all but won.
How can any Australian that played that test match be sure of the validity of that win? I know I’m not.
Now let me be clear here. I’m not anti-Pakistani and I don’t believe that they are the only nationality at this. Who knows how many other countries’ players are possibly involved in things like this, I don’t for one minute think this is just a Pakistani problem. I dread to think how many others are possibly corrupt in this great game.
It is also a damning indictment that ICC seem powerless to do anything about it. They have already admitted that had it not been for the News of the World this case would probably never have been brought to light.
If they had known about it, they couldn’t have set up the same sting that the newspaper did as it would be considered ‘entrapment’ and wouldn’t have stood up in a British court of law – and lets be honest about this, ICC wouldn’t have had the skills or the brains to set up such a slick operation.
The Police have also admitted that they wouldn’t have had the man power or resources to do it, so who is going to be able to do anything in the future? It is a worrying thought.
I’d like to end by saying that this is also partly a human tragedy. No matter how stupid an individual I think Salman Butt is, his wife has just given birth to a baby. He possibly won’t see that baby grow up for the first few years of his life due to his own greed and stupidity, as a father of recent years, I do feel sorry for him in this aspect.
The players will get what they deserve tomorrow. Does Butt’s wife deserve this? I don’t know, maybe she knew what was happening and approved, maybe she didn’t know a thing. The young baby she has just had certainly doesn’t deserve this, Butt has now got to live with the consequences of what his stupid behaviour has caused.