The Heavy Ball

This, that and the other. Mostly the other

Fixing? Fixed!

Reporting corruption is a piece of cake with the ECB's new hotline

Alan Tyers

Comments: 7 | Text size: A | A
Paul Condon, the ICC Anti-Corruption Unit's outgoing chief, speaks to reporters at Lord's, London, May 20, 2010
"Ineffective? Us? Why don't I come over there and rip your tongue out and stuff it in your shoe and then we'll see?" © Getty Images
Enlarge

A story by Alison Mitchell in Tuesday's Times revealed that the ECB's anti-corruption unit has not yet had a meeting since it first gathered four months ago, that members have not been contacted since, and that a Corruption Hotline for players to call in the event of a brown paper bag emergency is unmanned - and goes straight to voicemail.

Some might think that a bit of an unimpressive effort. Au contraire: the ECB have got their top people on the case; and they have synergised the following telephonic solution.

Recorded voice: "Hello and welcome to the ECB's anti-corruption hotline. Please hold."

Vivaldi's Four Seamers (muzak version) plays, interspersed with offers to buy a hamper and matchday ticket package to Chester-le-Street for the 2008 New Zealand ODI (some tickets still available; price £189.99)

This goes on for six minutes.

Recorded voice: "Hello and welcome to the ECB's anti-corruption hotline. To report a no-ball, please press 1. To find the address of your nearest ice-cream parlour, please press 2. If you are a match-fixer and wish to turn yourself in, please press 3. For all other options, please press 9."

The caller presses 9.

Recorded female voice: "Hello and welcome to the ECB's anti-corruption hotline. Please hold."

Vivaldi's Four Seamers (muzak version) plays.

For six minutes.

Caller jabs at buttons in rage.

Recorded voice: "You have selected 1 - reporting a no-ball. If you wish to proceed, please say: 'Howzat?'"

Embarrassed to be saying this aloud while in the queue for the cashpoint, the caller whispers: "Howzat?"

Recorded voice: "I'm sorry, I didn't catch that. If you wish to proceed, please say: 'Howzat?'"

This continues for some minutes until the caller is eventually obliged to shout: "HOWZAT??"

Recorded voice: "You have been fined for excessive appealing. Please redial on 0845 555 55555, quoting the reference 0981241jJjjjJjjJ37i12u3jjasJAKSDASK. Remember that this passcode is case sensitive. Calls will be charged at 90p per minute. If you are a match-fixer who wishes to turn himself in, please press three. Please. Please. That's our only hope. Go on. Goodbye."

RSS FeedCheck out CrickiLeaks: The Secret Ashes Diaries, by Tyers and Beach

Tell us what you think. Send us your feedback

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Comments: 7 
Posted by   on (November 19, 2011, 1:16 GMT)

simply awesome article lolz

Posted by   on (November 18, 2011, 9:44 GMT)

LOL! That's our only hope! Good one!

Posted by   on (November 18, 2011, 8:53 GMT)

hilarious and knee-slapping, until you over did it in the last sentence!!

Posted by Ronsars on (November 18, 2011, 8:43 GMT)

Good one Alex....................................

Posted by   on (November 18, 2011, 8:27 GMT)

hilarious !!! __ such a shame .

Posted by   on (November 18, 2011, 8:20 GMT)

:D

Posted by   on (November 18, 2011, 7:45 GMT)

Awesome..:) ROTFL..:) Too good Alan...

Comments have now been closed for this article

Email this page to a friend Email Feedback Feedback Print Print
RSS FeedAll
Alan Tyers
Alan Tyers writes about sport for the Daily Telegraph and others. He is the author of six books published by Bloomsbury, all of them with pictures by the brilliant illustrator Beach. The most recent is Tutenkhamen's Tracksuit: The History of Sport in 100ish Objects. Alan is one of many weak links in the world's worst cricket team, the Twenty Minuters.

All Articles »

Alan TyersClose
Alan Tyers Alan Tyers writes about sport for the Daily Telegraph and others. He is the author of six books published by Bloomsbury, all of them with pictures by the brilliant illustrator Beach. The most recent is Tutenkhamen's Tracksuit: The History of Sport in 100ish Objects. Alan is one of many weak links in the world's worst cricket team, the Twenty Minuters.
  • ESPN
  • ESPNF1
  • Scrum
  • Soccernet