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    May 18, 2005

    Jaywant Lele rakes up match-fixing again

    Jaywant Lele, who recently offered his opinion on offered who India's coach should be, revealed in an interview with a newspaper that during a tournament in Sharjah in 1987, Dawood Ibrahim offered a Toyota car to each Indian player if the team won the series.

    I find it extremely ridiculous that he is spilling the beans 18 years after the incident apparently occured. In between, we had the CBI investigate the match-fixing scandal. Why didn't he reveal this during the course of that investigation?

    His tale takes us back to 1987. To put it in perspective about how long ago that was in cricketing terms: Australia were a horrible side, the West Indies team was at the zenith of their powers, Sunil Gavaskar was still playing test cricket, Brian Lara had just made his first-class debut while Sachin Tendulkar was still to do so, Steve Waugh was a poor Aussie's Keith Miller, England had won the previous Ashes series, Pakistan's captaincy fights and infighting got uglier with every series, Sri Lanka were the babes of international cricket, South Africa were nowhere near returning from isolation, the previous three World Cups had all been held in one country, New Zealand had two decent players, Graeme Hick had moved from Zimbabwe and was just about making an impact in England, Bangladesh had played a few one-dayers and were thrashed repeatedly.

    Hang on, some of that doesn't sound like too long ago. Especially those bits about England, Bangladesh and New Zealand. But yes, we're effectively talking of an incident which apparently happened nearly three generations of cricketers ago. At least in the Indian context, in 1987 the Gavaskar era was coming to a close while Azhar had already been touted as the next best thing. Manjrekar had still not made any impact. Until the mid 1990s Tendulkar was Indian cricket. The Ganguly-Dravid era started from the late 1990s. We're now in the Sehwag era. So it was three generations of Indian batsmanship ago.

    I really cant understand why on earth he is talking about the incident now. Just publicity mongering, now that it has been a while since he had a honorary position in the BCCI? I hope the CBI grills him thoroughly for not having disclosed this information during their investigation.

    For what its worth, these are the three tournaments played in Sharjah around that period: A Champions Trophy and a couple of Sharjah Cups. I wonder which one he was talking about.

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    Thus spake Jagadish @ 6:18 PM |
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