Innovative Ways Of Preventing Match Fixing

When something becomes immensely popular, it becomes essential for its entire popularity to get mired in some form of controversy or a situation that is hard to repair. Cricket is a world famous game and has a popularity and legacy of its own among its lovers. Although having originated in the British Isles, the popularity of cricket is mostly associated with South Asian countries like India, Bangladesh, Pakistan and Sri Lanka. Indeed the fan-following here for each of their respective teams is crazy about winning.

The controversy that the game of cricket, usually referred to as a gentleman’s game, has been plagued for a long time now by the act of ‘Match Fixing’. Match-fixing is deemed as a criminal act that robs the rule of game of its power and destroys the fairness and competitive spirit. Match-fixing is an act that enables an organized sport to yield a pre-determined result either completely or partially. Cricket, as an organized sport, has had its share of match-fixing controversies and perhaps more than any other sport because of its very nature.

Since cricket allows individual players to demonstrate their strengths while engaged in a team vs. team duel, the chances that match-fixers can intervene and change the entire course of the match increases in probability. These illegal prowlers can have the entire match fixed through monetary means or have the strongest player give in to their whims and fancies through bribes that are not just huge in value but illegal and wrong under all circumstances.

With Vinod Kambli, the former Indian cricketer, recently claiming that the 1997 World Cup semi-final between India and Sri Lanka was fixed, the issue of match-fixing has again made it to the cover pages of newspapers. The news, although old, has highlighted how the entire problem with match-fixing is perennial and how it has also increased the importance that must be laid on preventing match-fixing for the sake of the game and its accompanying true sportsmanship.

Here are some ideas that can probably be used as preventive measures against match-fixing:

  • Polygraph tests made mandatory before and after the match
  • A special referee, well-versed in body language reading, to be made a fifth empire to keep a watch on suspect behavior on the field
  • Special envoy from the ICC to become as part of team management to accompany the team during matches. This person can make himself/herself available as a confidante and counselor for players at all times

Do you think these measures would work? Please do share your thoughts about these measures and also feel free to contribute your own ideas about how match-fixing can be prevented so that our favorite game remains so for our future generations as well!

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