Zimbabwe cricket official banned for 20 years
HARARE, Zimbabwe (AP) — A Zimbabwean official has been banned for 20 years by the International Cricket Council after being found guilty of match-fixing charges.
Rajan Nayer, who was an influential board member of Zimbabwe’s cricket governing body until 2015, was initially suspended and charged for approaching Zimbabwe captain Graeme Cremer with an offer of US$30 000 to influence the outcome of a game during the African team’s home test series with the West Indies last October.
Immediately after charges were laid, the Harare Metropolitan Cricket Association, the country’s largest domestic cricket body, removed Nayer from his position as its marketing director.
“The International Cricket Council (ICC) today announced that it has suspended Rajan Nayer from all cricket activity for 20 years after he accepted a charge of breaching the ICC Anti-Corruption Code,” the ICC said in a statement.
“I welcome the result of the investigation and the substantial sanction imposed upon Mr. Nayer. It is important that the seriousness of his offences were reflected in the length of ban,” said ICC official Alex Marshall, the body’s Anti-Corruption Unit general manager.
“I would like to place on record my thanks to Graeme Cremer, who has acted with the utmost professionalism throughout this process. Immediately after he received the approach from Mr. Nayer he reported it to the ICC and we were able to get an investigation underway swiftly. Graeme has been involved and updated throughout the investigation and has played a critical role in ensuring that corruption has no place in our sport.”
Cremer, who first informed coach Heath Streak of Nayer’s advances, said: “I was appalled to be approached by someone so closely connected to the game and there was no doubt in my mind that I had to report it as soon as I could. We receive education around this which you never expect to have to use, but it certainly helped when it came to knowing what to do.”
Nayer, a Zimbabwean citizen of Indian origin, has been involved in cricket administration in the country for many years.
After his suspension by ICC, Nayer also lost his position as chairman of the Old Hararians club, an iconic institution in Zimbabwean cricket which in the past produced top players like Duncan Fletcher, Dave Houghton, Trevor Penney and Graeme Hick.