June 15, 2010

Corruption fears block miking of players in ODIs

Liam Brickhill

The fear that corrupt cricketers could send coded messages to illegal bookmakers live on air means that the ICC will not allow broadcasters to strap microphones to players during one-day internationals, and could review their use in Twenty20 internationals as well, reports the Sydney Morning Herald.

Channel Nine, the Australian broadcaster, is trying to get the ICC to ease their stance, and argue that if players are allowed to be miked up in Twenty20s, then there is no reason they couldn’t be in ODIs.

''There is absolutely no difference as far as we're concerned, that is one thing we're going to investigate, we can't see any problems with it,'' said Brad McNamara, Nine’s executive producer of cricket. ''I think it is a little bit overprotective, we think they are being way oversensitive about it.”

''We allowed players to wear microphones in Twenty20s in the early days because it was a new form of the game and we wanted to give it every opportunity to succeed,'' said an ICC spokesman. ''There is a relaxation to players being miked in Twenty20s, but the board can review that decision if it wishes.''

Liam Brickhill is a freelance journalist based in Cape Town

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