The International Cricket Council [ICC] has slapped an eight-year ban on two UAE cricketers Ashfaq Ahmed and Amir Hayat after they were found guilty of fixing matches during the ICC T20 World Cup Qualifiers in 2019.
The ICC Anti-Corruption Tribunal had charged both the Pakistan-born cricketers on September 13, 2020, and hence the ban is backdated to the day.
As per the ICC Anti-Corruption Code, Aamir Hayat and Ashfaq Ahmed have been found guilty on five counts which include failure to disclose a corrupt approach, trying to influence the outcome of the match, and accepting gifts worth more than 750 US dollars.
“The bans are backdated to 13 September 2020, when they were provisionally suspended for corrupt conduct in relation to the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup Qualifier 2019 in the UAE,” the ICC release stated.
Both Amir Hayat and Ashfaq Ahmed were found guilty of taking 15000 AED from an Indian bookie, identified as Mr ‘Y’ in the charge sheet for fixing the T20 Qualifiers fixtures.
“In October 2019, the ICC ACU commenced an investigation into allegations that members of the UAE senior international team may have had dealings with a known corruption network controlled by an Indian man named [Mr Y],” the judgment stated.
The ICC ACU’s Coordinator Investigations, Steven Richardson, testified that ACU was in knowledge of Mr (Y) for some time because he had been reported of approaching a number of players to get involved in corruption in the past.
“The ACU was also aware that [Mr Y] had been involved in unsanctioned cricket tournaments which had corruption and betting links,” it further stated.
The judgment report also stated that Amir Hayat and Ashfaq Ahmed had attended four and three anti-corruption education sessions organized by the ICC.
It also revealed that there were Whatsapp messages that were shared between the duo and the Indian bookie but the meeting that was scheduled on a specific date did not take place.
”The UAE was due to participate in the ICC World T20 Qualifiers in the UAE in October 2019 and it is alleged that the Players understood that this payment of the AED 15,000 anticipated their engagement in corrupt conduct during the Qualifiers, with precisely what would be expected of them to be provided at a later date,” the ICC stated.
“WhatsApp messages between the Players suggest that the Players and [Mr Y] were trying to arrange a meeting on 7 September 2019, at which, it is to be inferred, details of what they would be asked to do in the Qualifiers would be given to them. The Players say that this meeting did not in fact take place.” the judgment revealed.