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FICA chief Paul Marsh has expressed outrage over the news that cricketers are not being monitored under the United States' notorious PRISM programme.
"It's disgusting to hear that the Obama administration does not believe cricketers are a force to reckon with," Marsh spluttered. "Obviously this is another plot by the ICC and BCCI to undermine players."
FICA has demanded that all data collected by PRISM be re-analysed to check if cricket is really not mentioned anywhere.
"Have you seen the sort of verbal violence that cricket fans engage in on Twitter? Imagine how much worse their emails must be," Marsh insisted. "I think if this news is true, America must step forward and admit there has been a grave lapse in security."
"They are monitoring ordinary Americans - Americans - and not me," said an incredulous Kevin Pietersen.
Social-media analysts believe it is the banality of cricketers' Twitter updates that has resulted in them being excluded from the spying programme. "All celebrities tend to be boring, but nothing is duller than a cricketer updating his followers about his training regimen," said a Twitter spokesperson.
But security experts believe that is exactly why cricket needs to be brought under scrutiny. "A cricketer training? Every day? Whatever for? That's even more suspicious than people who don't have Facebook accounts," said a CIA agent.
In fact, there are those in the United States government who fear that unless the game is immediately brought under PRISM's radar, terrorists may start using cricket terms as code. "At the moment 'third man', 'mystery ball', 'Phantom', 'chucking', 'green Mamba' and 'Super Over' are getting filtered out and terrorists may want to exploit that," said a government official. Asked if "tracer bullet" raised red flags, he replied, "Oh no, one has used that outside cricket since 1945."
Meanwhile, sources in the BCCI said that the board has asked the US government to sign an affidavit stating categorically that it will not extend the use of its tracking technology to cricket.
"We don't believe these computer programs are 100% accurate," said a board official. "Of course, we accept that some amount of wrongdoing goes on in cricket, and it may even have links with the mafia, but will that reduce with the use of technology? It won't. We are concerned about the possible victimisation of innocents, especially those who, at the moment live safe in the knowledge that conflicts of interest can be denied by just hitting 'backspace'."
Unconfirmed reports suggest that a memo prepared by the White House in response to the BCCI's request reads: "Fine, as long as they promise to stop trying to bring cricket to the United States."
All quotes and "facts" in this story are made up. But you knew that, didn't you?
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
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