Little hope for alleged Zim fixers

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JOHANNESBURG Fifa is unlikely to pardon Zimbabwean players and the countrys football administrators that were allegedly involved in match-fixing.

There was hope among alleged match-fixers when Fifa, after a meeting at its Zurich headquarters last week, outlined plans to stop match-fixing.

During the meeting, the organisation said it was considering amnesty to players, officials or administrators who may have been caught up in uncompromising, unfair or intimidating situations, but who now wish to tell the full truth and help both themselves and the game to correct itself.

However, the Zimbabwean players, a number who ply their trade in the South African Premiership, appear not to qualify for amnesty.

At this stage it is too early to discuss a potential amnesty for the players as this measure is implemented during 2012, Fifa said in response to an enquiry by kickoff.com.

Allegations of match-fixing by Zimbabwean players and administrators date back to 2008 following a number of tours to Asia. A report the Zimbabwe Football Association released last year fingered about 80 players and a number of administrators in the scam. If found guilty, they face bans from the sport.

Meanwhile, while Fifa pledges to up the ante on match-fixing, it concedes this would be an uphill task.

Football is currently facing unprecedented challenges in terms of match-fixing, the effects of which are felt nationally, regionally and globally. Crucially for Fifa, this is damaging the integrity and reputation of footballs governing organisations and the entire sport could potentially be thrown into disrepute, it noted.

Among the players implicated are Sundowns duo of defender Method Mwanjali and striker Nyasha Mushekwi.