Skip to main content

Match-fixing allegations rock New Zealand cricket

By Tim Hume, CNN
updated 1:38 AM EST, Fri December 6, 2013
Former New Zealand test batsman Lou Vincent says he is cooperating with the ICC investigation.
Former New Zealand test batsman Lou Vincent says he is cooperating with the ICC investigation.
  • International Cricket Council says it is investigating former New Zealand players
  • Former batsman Lou Vincent say he is involved in match-fixing investigation
  • Chris Cairns is seeking clarification from ICC as to whether he is under investigation

Hong Kong (CNN) -- New Zealand sport has been rocked by allegations that three former national cricketers are under investigation for alleged match-fixing, according to reports.

The International Cricket Council (ICC), the game's governing body, said in a statement that a small number of former New Zealand representatives were under investigation by the anti-corruption unit for alleged involvement in "fixing activity in historic cricket matches."

It did not identify those under investigation, but after New Zealand media named those alleged to be implicated, two of the players made statements regarding the investigation.

Former test batsman Lou Vincent confirmed he was involved, but said the ongoing investigation made him unable to comment further.

"I wish to let everyone know that I am cooperating with an ongoing ICC anti-corruption investigation that has been made public today," said Vincent, who played his last game for New Zealand in 2007.

"This investigation is bound by a number of rules and regulations that mean I am unable to make any further public comment. I will personally talk to the public when I am able to."

Former all-rounder Chris Cairns, also named in media reports as one of the players involved, told reporters he was unaware of any investigation and had not been contacted by authorities in relation to the matter.

Cairns, who played his last game for New Zealand in 2006, had been acting as a television commentator for New Zealand's test match against the West Indies in Dunedin, but left the coverage amid the controversy.

Another former player claimed in media reports to be the third individual involved made no public comment.

New Zealand Cricket chief executive David White told reporters the organization had been aware of this investigation for a number of months and was "shocked and surprised by the allegations."

"We support the ICC's investigation as corruption has no place in our sport. No current New Zealand players are being investigated. No games played in New Zealand are being investigated. Lastly, no matches under New Zealand Cricket's jurisdiction are being investigated."

New Zealand Prime Minister John Key told reporters it would be "very, very serious'' if the allegations were proven.

"New Zealand is a country that sees itself as a very above board, honest place both to do business and to play sport, so it would be deeply concerning if this was factually correct."

The country regularly ranks as one of the world's least corrupt, recently topping Transparency International's Corruption Perceptions Index alongside Denmark.

Cairns has previously challenged match-fixing allegations in the courts, and won.

Last year, he sued Indian cricket official and businessman Lalit Modi in a British Court, after Modi had tweeted allegations of match-fixing relating to Cairns' stint with the Chandigarh Lions in the short-lived Indian Cricket League.

Cairns captained the side in 2007 and 2008, playing alongside Vincent in 2008. Modi, who ran the rival Indian Premier League competition, lost his appeal against the court's decision in October 2012, with damages increased to £90,000 ($147,459).

International cricket has been plagued by the specter of match-fixing in recent years. Players from countries including Pakistan, India, the West Indies and South Africa -- including the late former captain Hansie Cronje -- have been issued punishments ranging up to life bans for under-performance, bribe-taking or passing information to bookmakers.

In August, seven were charged in Bangladesh with match-fixing; former national captain Mohammad Ashraful had previously confessed to fixing matches.

And in October, six international umpires were stood down following an India TV expose which alleged officials were willing to fix matches at the recent T20 World Cup in exchange for payment.

Part of complete coverage on
updated 7:45 AM EDT, Thu April 17, 2014
India's Premier League has moved part of its season to the UAE. CNN's Amir Daftari has more.
updated 2:51 PM EST, Tue December 31, 2013
CNN's Piers Morgan decided to face a few balls from Australian cricket great Brett Lee. It didn't go well.
updated 4:56 AM EST, Mon November 18, 2013
Cricket legend Sachin Tendulkar talks to CNN's Mallika Kapur about his career, fan expectations and future plans.
updated 9:45 AM EST, Mon January 6, 2014
Gareth Evans was just a small boy when a team of West Indies cricketers arrived in apartheid South Africa. The lives of these men would never be the same.
updated 12:54 PM EST, Sun December 29, 2013
Jacques Kallis crowns his final Test appearance with an innings that typifies his status as one of cricket's greatest batsmen.
updated 8:01 PM EST, Sun November 17, 2013
Every sport has its gods -- and Sachin Tendulkar has bowed out as one of the greatest in cricket's pantheon.
updated 11:59 AM EST, Fri March 8, 2013
Franklyn Stephenson was only 23 years old when his career was ended for his participation in the 1983
World Sport investigates what happened to the West Indian cricketers who were shunned after playing in apartheid-era South Africa.
updated 11:09 AM EST, Wed March 6, 2013
It has been 30 years since a group of young men from the Caribbean made a decision that would define their lives.
updated 10:12 AM EST, Fri March 8, 2013
It was supposed to be cricket's "Rosa Parks" moment, and it led to South Africa's sporting isolation for two decades.
updated 11:59 AM EST, Fri March 8, 2013
Collis King, hero of the 1979 West Indies World Cup victory, reflects on his participation in the 1983
For the young black cricketers who left the Caribbean to play in apartheid-era South Africa 30 years ago, everything changed that day.
updated 7:47 AM EST, Thu March 7, 2013
West Indies cricketer Franklyn Stephenson on the discrimination he witnessed during South Africa's apartheid era.
updated 7:49 AM EDT, Wed April 10, 2013
He plays the only sport approved by the Taliban, a game he learned as a war refugee in Pakistan.