Yesterday, former Essex county cricket player, Mervyn Westfield, admitted to spot fixing in a county match back in 2009.
Westfield has confessed to accepting £6,000 in return for conceding 12 runs in his first over, however only ten were scored. The match between Essex and Durham took place on September 9th, 2009.
The Old Bailey heard Westfield’s confession, but Judge Anthony Morris was quick to point that the person who offered Westfield money was well-known in the cricket world.
Westfield becomes the first english cricketer to be guilty of such an offence. He has also been charged with assisting another person to cheat gambling.
After a torrid summer for cricket as three pakistani players and an agent went to jail for spot fixing, this was not what the sport needed.
The England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) released a press statement confirming the seriousness of the crime. “This case sends out a clear message to all players and officials that spot or match fixing is a criminal activity and punishable by the law”.
The press release went to express a strong attitude to, “continue to do our utmost to ensure that cricket is free from any corrupt activity”. They have even opened up a non-punishable window for players to come forward and give information on any spot fixing communication.
Former England Captain and Sky Sports commentator, Nasser Hussain, explained that this is a “sad day for cricket”. as clearly, “spot fixing happens throughout the game”.
Hussain was asked how to stop this from happening and he kept repeating, “keep educating”. He suggested that the ECB, “use him (Westfield) as an example for the younger generations”.
It is unsure what kind of punishment the 23-year-old can expect. He remains out on bail until the sentencing occurs on February 10th. The ECB will dish their own playing punishment afterwards.