Dubai: Cricket fans in the UAE are aghast over allegations against Lalit Modi and accusation of financial irregularities and match-fixing in the conduct of the Indian Premier League (IPL).
"If any cricket administrator is found guilty he should be given the same punishment given to Hansie Cronje and Mohammad Azharudduin for match-fixing. Cricket is for gentlemen and gentlemen should organise cricket in a transparent manner. If the allegations are true it will be very damaging for the game," Hayat Yar Khan, secretary, Dubai Cricket Council (DCC), said.
Mohammad Reda Abbas, the executive member of the Emirates Cricket Board said: "One should not blame anyone unless found guilty. First of all income tax authorities do not have the authority to comment on match-fixing. Years back it happened to Sharjah too. Just because bookmakers came and sat there this venue was accused of match-fixing."
Mohammad Lokhandwala of DCC fears that if the allegations are true it will be the end of IPL. "If all that is alleged has happened [the] government may intervene to stop IPL which is dear to everyone. Money-laundering from unknown sources is a serious crime. Unfortunately, IPL is now going in a direction which no one ever thought of and I fear for this tournament which has given us a lot of joy."
According to Prem Mishra, UAE's senior umpire: "There cannot be smoke without fire. I only fear that this fire does not eat up IPL..."