Cricket supporter handed 5-year ban over spot-fixing attempt

star Luke Jongwe

ZIMBABWE Cricket (ZC) has banned a fan from all cricket activities for five years for attempting to influence national cricket team star Luke Jongwe (pictured) to engage in spot fixing.

Spot-fixing is illegal activity in a sport in which a specific aspect of a game, unrelated to the final result but upon which a betting market exists, is fixed in an attempt to ensure a certain result in a proposition bet.

Edward Walter Mupangano, a 27-year-old cricket fan from Harare received the sanction after he approached Jongwe on August 4, 2022.

Mupangano, who in the past also had playing trials with a local club, attempted to introduce Jongwe to an Indian bookmaker who allegedly wanted the player to bowl in a pre-arranged manner during an international match in return for a payment amounting to US$7 000.

The fan was supposed to receive US$3 000 if the planned corrupt activity was successful, but his plan failed after Jongwe immediately reported the approach.

“Following an investigation, Mupangano accepted a charge of violating the ZC anti-corruption code for being allegedly party to an effort to fix or contrive or otherwise influence improperly the result, progress, conduct or other aspects of a cricket match. As a result of his admission, ZC has banned him for five years from all ZC-affiliated cricket venues and/or events,” Zimbabwe Cricket said in a statement.

Zimbabwe Cricket chairman Tavengwa Mukuhlani said the recent spot-fixing attempt further highlighted the need for Zimbabwe to have a legal instrument to make fixing and any other sporting corruption activities a criminal offence.

“It is our view that harsh sanctions, including custodial sentences, will go a long way in helping cricket to curb one of the biggest threats to its credibility,” Mukuhlani said.

“Criminalising match-fixing and spot-fixing will send a strong warning to offenders and would-be offenders that corruption has no place in cricket and those who engage in it should be jailed or put out of the game.”

The local cricket governing body’s managing director Givemore Makoni said they will intensify their anti-corruption education drive within their structures.

“The integrity of ZC and the game itself is of paramount importance and, therefore, the need to maintain high levels of honesty and professionalism at all levels of the game cannot be overemphasised,” Makoni said.

“Let me take this opportunity to place on record our thanks to Luke Jongwe for reporting the approach — this is what is expected of all participants in cricket if we are to keep our game clean.”

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