Skip to main content

Cricket chiefs consider lie-detectors to fight corruption

Pakistani cricketers Mohammad Aamer (left), Salman Butt (right) and Mohammad Asif are at the center of a corruption scandal.
Pakistani cricketers Mohammad Aamer (left), Salman Butt (right) and Mohammad Asif are at the center of a corruption scandal.
  • Cricket rule makers could introduce lie-detectors to help fight corruption in the sport
  • Several suggestions made after a meeting of MCC World Cricket Committee in Australia
  • The sport came into disrepute when members of Pakistan team were accused of match-fixing
  • Other recommendations included the inclusion of anti-corruption clauses in all playing contracts

(CNN) -- Lie-detector tests could be used in a bid to stamp out corruption in cricket, an advisory committee of the sport's rule-making body announced on Wednesday.

Cricket was shrouded in controversy earlier this year when three members of the Pakistan team became the subject of match-fixing allegations during a tour of England.

Following a police investigation, captain Salman Butt and bowlers Mohammad Aamer and Mohammad Asif -- who all protested their innocence -- will face a disciplinary hearing by the International Cricket Council in January.

But after a meeting of the MCC World Cricket Committee in Perth on Tuesday and Wednesday, officials admitted that the latest corruption scandal has had a negative impact on the sport.

Blog: Will Australia's one-day cricket reign end in 2011?

"We are concerned at the scale of the problem, and the detrimental effect it has placed on the integrity of the game," a statement on the MCC's official website read.

We've seen how disruptive and detrimental to the game of cricket it [corruption] is
--England captain Andrew Strauss

"The committee feels more resources -- and increased powers -- are required to attempt to eradicate this issue from the game. The education of players should not be a meaningless formality; the message should be pressed home with regularity by figures known and respected by the players."

As well as the possible introduction of lie-detector tests, other suggestions included the legalizing and regulating of betting markets in India, the inclusion of anti-corruption clauses in playing contracts and the non-inclusion of "tainted" players.

The committee, comprised of past and present cricketers and officials, also said that captains should take more responsibility for their players.

Its recommendations will be considered by the MCC Laws sub-committee in February.

However, the proposal to use lie-detectors to determine whether or not players are competing for the right reasons has already been questioned.

"I don't know about the accuracy of lie-detector tests," England captain Andrew Strauss told the UK Press Association on Wednesday on the eve of his side's third Ashes Test against Australia in Perth.

"But what I do know, and is probably more important, is that we don't want the whiff of anything suspicious going on in the game."

Strauss' team also came under the spotlight when Pakistan Cricket Board chairman Ijaz Butt made accusations -- which he later withdrew -- that some England players had themselves accepted money to fix match results.

The ongoing scandal took a further turn when Pakistani wicketkeeper Zulqarnain Haider fled to Britain during a series with South Africa in Abu Dhabi, claiming he had refused to fix a match.

"We've seen how disruptive and detrimental to the game of cricket it is. If we have to take extreme measures in order to be 100% confident the game is being played in the right spirit, then I'd certainly be happy to do that," Strauss said.

"I'd have to think about the arguments (for lie-detector tests) first. But the principle, of having 22 guys on the pitch that the supporters are absolutely 100% certain are playing the game for the right reasons, is a good thing."