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Leaked conversations between Nasir, Khalid strengthens PCB’s stance on spot-fixing

CricketLeaked conversations between Nasir, Khalid strengthens PCB’s stance on spot-fixing

LAHORE: Some portions of conversations between cricketers Nasir Jamshed and Khalid Latif, allegedly involved in spot-fixing during the second edition of the Pakistan Super League (PSL), were leaked to the social media on late Thursday.

The spot-fixing scam was reported on Feb 10, 2017, after the first match of the second PSL held in Dubai on Feb 9, 2017. As a result, Khalid and Sharjeel Khan were immediately sidelined by the Pakistan Cricket Board from the PSL as the first step.psl-logo

Later, the PCB widened the scope of inquiry and included Shahzaib Hasan, Mohammad Irfan and Nasir Jamshed in it.

The talks were held on Whats­App and they were recorded on Feb 9 and 10, 2017. It could be heard in all the leaked audio clips that the players were discussing sale of a ‘bat’. According to the PCB, the word ‘bat’ was used for player.

In the first audio, which was recorded on Feb 9 at 4.56am, Nasir was heard telling Khalid, “Khalid bhai you don’t need to worry about Yousuf [probably a bookie]. A gora [an Englishman) has made Yousuf his frontman. The gora is behind everything and he buys bats. He has hired Yousuf. You don’t need to worry.”

PCB’s doubt on both Khalid and Nasir strengthened when after talking on Feb 9 about deal of bats, the next night soon after end of the first match of the PSL between Islamabad United and Peshawar Zalmi, Nasir again contacted Khalid at 1.30am and said, “Khalid bhai I have to talk about payment for bats. You can also contact the man yourself and inform him where he should deliver the payment.”

In another audio clip, Nasir was saying, “We can trust him [no name is mentioned] 100 per cent. We can’t spoil the name of our company and can’t ruin our bats.

“I have known Yousuf for a long time. I have met him recently in England. I had even met him when I last visited England for the Champions Trophy and sold my bats to him.

Khalid was telling Nasir in one clip, “Ok, I will show you another bat but the responsibility for payment lies on you and there should be no trouble.”

A clip which was recorded during Khalid’s interrogation by Col Azam of the PCB’s Security and Vigilance Department also got leaked. In it, Khalid was acknowledging, “Yes, he made me an offer, but I turned it down. The word bat was used for me.”

Meanwhile, sources told Dawn that the leaked audios were only five per cent of the total audios given to both Khalid and Sharjeel.

The recordings are supporting PCB’s stance and it may be an attempt by the Board to strengthen its case against the cricketers as the suspected cricketers were receiving sympathy from some quarters.

If the PCB fails to prove its case, its repercussions will be severe.

The cricketers, in return, may also leak those portions of the audios which suit their cases.

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