May 17, 2012
Kings XI Punjab acting captain, Australian David Hussey, yesterday defended his team's integrity amid allegations of corruption in the Indian Premier League (IPL).
Amit Yadav and Shalabh Srivastava, two of the five players suspended by the Indian cricket board (BCCI) following a television sting, are contracted to the Punjab IPL team, but have not played in the ongoing tournament.
Hussey, leading the team in the absence of injured fellow Australian Adam Gilchrist, said he would be disappointed if fingers were pointed at any of his players.
''Everyone in my team, everyone in Kings XI Punjab as a brand, plays with utmost integrity and if any print or TV media tries to write differently or say something differently about my team, then I will be very disappointed,'' Hussey said.
''I can't really comment on the sting,'' he added.
Reporters from the Hindi-language India TV, posing as sports agents, recorded the low-profile players as saying spot-fixing and black money were prevalent in the lucrative Twenty20 competition.
TP Sudhindra, Mohnish Mishra and Abhinav Bali were the other first-class cricketers suspended from the game on Tuesday by the BCCI until preliminary investigations were completed.
The probe will be carried out by former police officer Ravi Sawani, who has previously served on the International Cricket Council's anti-corruption and security unit.
Sudhindra has played in three IPL matches for the Deccan Chargers this year and Mishra turned out in one game for Pune Warriors. Bali has not featured in the tournament.
India TV showed Sudhindra allegedly agreeing to bowl pre-arranged no-balls in a local amateur match, while Srivastava was reportedly heard boasting he could do the same in the IPL.
Mishra was filmed as saying he was paid a major part of his IPL salary by Pune Warriors in ''black'' (illegal) money, while Yadav and Bali alleged spot-fixing existed in the tournament. Srivastava has denied the voice in the audio was his, and Mishra apologised, saying he made the comment ''casually, for personal gain''.