Vaughan fears for one-dayers
Michael Vaughan says the one-day series between England and Pakistan is in danger of being called off.
Last Updated: 30/08/10 9:26am
Former England captain Michael Vaughan says the one-day series between England and Pakistan is in serious danger of being called off if the players accused of match-rigging are selected.
Writing in the DailyTelegraph, Vaughan and other former players lined up to decry the situation after Pakistan captain Salman Butt and two of their star bowlers were interviewed by the police following allegations of a betting scandal.
"England will not want to play against them and the public will be suspicious of anything out of the ordinary. The matches would have no credibility as it has been alleged that two of the one-day internationals have been rigged already," Vaughan said.
"The game has to be cleaned up. This is the chance to change the game forever and stamp this kind of thing out. Finally, the game's administrators cannot run and hide.
"The only way the game will move forward is by hitting those involved with life bans if they are found guilty."
Former Pakistan bowler Sarfraz Nawaz wrote in The Sun: "It's terrible the scandal has unveiled at a time when people are dying in massive floods.
"That these players think only of themselves and their pockets while their country collapses is shameful.
"This also comes at a time when there are huge image problems for Pakistan.
"It is feared we have been unable to get desired aid from the world only because of our image - as a corrupt nation."
Sky Sports' Nasser Hussain fears the allegations are just the tip of the iceberg.
"I find it hard to believe that we're just talking about a few no-balls," he wrote in the Daily Mail.
"I'm furious with Pakistan for going down this road again.
"My hope is that, if the allegations are true, the authorities are strong. The depressing fact is we're back to the sad, bad old days. The sooner they sort out this mess, the better for everyone."
Sky Sports' Mike Atherton wrote in The Times that the roots of the problem can be traced back to illegal bookmaking and the "gambling obsession" in India.
"Given the shift of cricket's power to the east, given the way cricket is uniquely placed to offer betting opportunities, given that it is a game played by human beings and given that the governing body is weak, it is unlikely that an absolute end to corruption will come any time soon," he said.
Ex-England skipper Ian Botham said the integrity of the game was at stake, writing in the Daily Mirror that spectators would not know if a match was a fair contest or "a few blokes out to make a few bob (money) on the sly".
"We need to see a swift investigation and with the evidence we've seen it surely can't take too long to get things moving.
"Then we need to see some appropriate action, not just have things fumbled around in a back room months later."
Ramiz Raja, the former Pakistan captain and later chief executive of the Pakistan Cricket Board, says the country has to learn from the scandal, and quickly.
"An entire generation has been left rudderless and hopeless by the acts of its favourite players and sons of Pakistani soil," he wrote in The Daily Telegraph.
"It is a disaster for cricket and at home it will take a long time for the wounds to heal. The players have let the country down.
"Those players must now be dealt with severely.
"Mohammad Amir... what a waste of talent... he was caught in a quick-fix mentality and will now pay the price. He will regret this for the rest of his life and the game has lost a great asset.
"For them to do it at Lord's, the Mecca of cricket, brings extreme shame and sadness."