Free Press Journal

‘Pitch-fixing culprits should be punished’


New Delhi : Indian skipper Virat Kohli’s mentor and childhood coach, Raj Kumar Sharma has said the International Cricket Council (ICC) should punish the culprits if they find out that last year’s India-Sri Lanka Test at Galle was fixed.

Sharma’ statement cames after ICC on Saturday launched an investigation into the July 2017 Test match between India and Sri Lanka after a sting operation done by Al Jazeera claimed that the match was played on a pitch doctored at the behest match-fixers.

Talking about the same, Sharma said: “It’s a big regret. It’s good that ICC has started looking into the matter. I think they will come out with the actual picture. If it has happened, then it’s very sad.”

“It’s really disheartening to see all this. Cricket is a gentlemen game. Such things should not happen. People who play at the international level are role models for the younger generation. They should not do all this. The culprits should be punished,” he added.

The match was played between India and Sri Lanka at Galle from July 26-29. India won the match by 304 runs. India scored 600 in the first innings with Shikhar Dhawan scoring 190 and Cheteshwar Pujara 153. In the second innings, India’s skipper Kohli scored an unbeaten hundred.

Sri Lanka could only muster 291 and 245 in their two innings and were beaten within four days.

Meanwhile, Sri Lanka Cricket on Sunday suspended a player and a groundsman who allegedly agreed to tamper with the pitch to alter the result of an upcoming Test against England, as police launched an investigation into the claims.