K.M.Chaudary/AP/Press Association Images Ijaz Butt
# Cricket
Butt apologies for Pakistani match-fixing claims
Pakistan’s cricket chief says sorry for alleging England players were match-fixing after failing to proove the allegations.

PAKISTAN’S CRICKET CHIEF Ijaz Butt has apologised for claiming England players were engaged in match fixing after being unable to produce any proof of the allegations.

The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) chairman had originally made claims that England players were paid money to lose the one day test international against Pakistan at The Oval earlier this month.

His accusations followed similar allegations made against Pakistani players who are reported to have been spot-fixing at certain points during the recent test series between England and Pakistan which has been mired in controversy.

But threatened with a lawsuit by the ECB and with no proof of the allegations which he claimed he heard off of bookmakers, Butt has been forced to apologise.

The apology came in the form of a joint statement from the England and Pakistani cricket boards. In the statement, Butt said:

I would like to make it quite clear that in the statements which I made that I never intended to question the behaviour and integrity of the England players nor the ECB nor to suggest that any of them were involved in any corrupt practices or in a conspiracy against Pakistan cricket.

In particular, I wish to make it clear that I have never seen any evidence of any wrong doing by any England player or the ECB at any time.

The ECB said that they now consider the matter closed. The International Cricket Council has suspended three Pakistan players pending a hearing in relation to the claims of spot fixing that were first reported by the News of the World in late August.