India news August 6, 2015

Abdulla reported suspect approach during IPL

ESPNcricinfo staff

A person introducing himself as a fan of Iqbal Abdulla asked if the spinner would be able to pass on inside information © BCCI

Royal Challengers Bangalore spinner Iqbal Abdulla had reported a suspect approach by an individual posing as a fan during IPL 2015.

The incident, understood to have taken place in the Royal Challengers' hotel in Bangalore during the early stages of the IPL, came to light when it was reported by the Indian Express newspaper. ESPNcricinfo also confirmed it with a BCCI insider but Abdulla remained unavailable for comment.

According to the insider, Abdulla was being flooded with text messages from an anonymous number for some time. The person, introducing himself as a fan of the left-arm spinner, was constantly requesting to be photographed with the player. After reading multiple texts that the supposed fan was waiting for him in the hotel lobby, Abdulla relented and acceded to the request of being photographed with the fan.

Soon after, the person asked Abdulla if he would be able to pass on inside information about team composition and other matters. Abdulla is then understood to have shoved him away and immediately reported the incident to the integrity officer deputed to his team.

Ever since the 2013 corruption scandal, the BCCI Anti-Corruption Unit assigns one of its officers to each of the eight IPL teams all through the tournament. The BCCI source revealed that the integrity officer followed the prescribed protocols and informed the hotel authorities to not let the person enter the hotel premises again.

This is the second incident of a fixing approach that has come to light about IPL 2015. A Rajasthan Royals player had reported an approach from a teammate just before the IPL, which resulted in Mumbai's Hiken Shah being suspended until the BCCI disciplinary committee decides on quantum of punishment for him.