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ECB charge Vincent and Arif with fixing

ESPNcricinfo staff
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Lou Vincent has been charged by the ECB © Getty Images
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The ECB has charged former Sussex players Lou Vincent and Naved Arif with alleged match-fixing in county cricket.

Vincent is charged with 14 offences relating to two matches; a Twenty20 match between Sussex and Lancashire and a 40 over game between Sussex and Kent at Hove. Arif is charged with six offences in relation to the 40-over game between Sussex and Kent in August 2011.

Sussex lost the CB40 game in question by 15 runs, with Arif conceding 41 runs in six overs without a wicket, and Vincent being run out for 1 off seven balls. The T20 match was a quarter-final, which Lancashire won by 20 runs. Vincent was caught behind first ball off Sajid Mahmood in the Sussex chase.

The result cost them a semi-final spot. In November 2012, Sussex had confirmed that the ICC's Anti-Corruption and Security Unit (ACSU) had investigated the match.

Both players have been provisionally suspended from all cricketing activities organised, authorised or supported by the ECB, ICC, any other national cricket federation and any member of any other national cricket federation.

Chris Watts, head of ECB's Anti-Corruption unit, said: "This has been an extremely complex and lengthy investigation co-ordinated across many jurisdictions around the world. This matter is now the subject of formal legal proceedings and we will therefore make no further comment other than to reiterate our determination to bring to account the very small minority who seek to corrupt cricket."

ECB chief executive David Collier added: "The ECB's ACCESS unit has worked tirelessly in conjunction with the ICC's ACSU to bring about these charges, which once again demonstrates the ECB's zero-tolerance approach to corruption in our great game."

The Daily Telegraph, which initially reported the story, said the Sussex-Kent match attracted bets totalling more than £12million on one legal gambling website alone, the highest total for any match of its kind in the past three years, which drew suspicions at the time but was cleared by the ICC's anti-corruption unit only for the case to be later reopened by the ECB.

Over the last two weeks it had emerged that Vincent, a former New Zealand batsman, had reportedly given information to the ACSU with details of attempted spot-fixing in several competitions around the world - including county cricket in England and the Champions League T20.

Arif, who is from Pakistan, was able to play for Sussex as a non-overseas player because of a Danish wife. He represented Sussex in eight Twenty20 matches, 12 first-class games and 14 List A matches in 2011 and 2012. He has also played for Sialkot and Sialkot Stallions, and his last domestic appearances were for Stallions in December 2012.

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