The International Cricket Council (ICC) has cleared English pacer, Liam Plunkett, from ball-tampering allegations leveled against him during the 2nd ODI between Pakistan and England.
JUST IN: The ICC has confirmed that the match officials are comfortable there was no attempt by Liam Plunkett to change the condition of the ball or any evidence of this on the over-by-over examinations of the ball throughout Saurday's ODI clash in Southampton. pic.twitter.com/0gzwHq9s4h
— ICC (@ICC) May 12, 2019
In a video which surfaced shortly after the match on social media, he was allegedly seen scratching the ball with his nails. The condition of the ball in the last few overs was poor, to say the least, and it has made people talk about the role of English bowlers in the scandal.
Here’s the video:
— Waqas Ahmed (@ahmedwaqas92) May 12, 2019
The English media is notorious spurring controversy during Pakistan tours to the country, however, it failed to point out the alleged tampering with the ball. Had it been a Pakistani cricketer, both the ICC and the English media would have had a different response.
ICC’s statement read:
The ICC has confirmed that the match officials are comfortable there was no attempt by Liam Plunkett to change the condition of the ball or any evidence of this on the over-by-over examinations of the ball throughout Saturday’s ODI clash in Southampton.
ICC’s role in investigating such incidents remains doubtful considering the fact that players from Pakistan have always faced severe sanctions as compared to the other nations. Whether it’s Indian Premier League (IPL), where spot-fixing is pretty much evident, or Australia or England, ICC tends to take a backseat and allow the respective boards to settle out the matter. However, that is not the case when Pakistani players are involved.
The poor condition of the ball may well have cost Pakistan the game as it all changed in the last couple of overs. Despite Pakistan’s limited finishing overs skills, it was a not-so-difficult a chase when Pakistan needed 60 odd from 40 balls. Even if the English players didn’t tamper with the ball, the condition of the ball was clearly unfit for play and it was a clear act of ignorance from the umpires who continue to let the bowlers use such a damaged ball.
The umpires were also called out by the players for constantly ignoring wide deliveries which might also have proven to be one of the factors that changed the match in England’s favour. Several deliveries pitched outside the reference Wide marking but the umpire ruled in favor of the English bowlers even though the batsmen were not moving in their crease.
ICC’s decision to exonerate has sparked plenty of debate on social media, suggesting that a strict stance should have been taken against those involved in the tampering.
Here’s what people are saying:
ICC to the evidence pic.twitter.com/bANibPDSCy
— Vice President (@jawadjaffrey) May 12, 2019
2 balls being used, 25 overs each – but it's amazing just how 'roughed up' these balls get sometimes. This ball is from the 42nd over of Pakistan's innings yesterday #ENGvPAK pic.twitter.com/RJgRFGbEdG
— Saj Sadiq (@Saj_PakPassion) May 12, 2019
Big three destroyed the ethics & credibility of ICC long time ago.
Individually ECB is the most biased fake & partial board when it comes to accountable & punish its players.
That is also the mistake of Pak's captain he should have checked the ball condition but Liam cheated.
— abdullah khan. (@yousafzaikhanis) May 12, 2019
Liam Plunkett must be banned.
Had it been someone from Pakistani, Bangladeshi or Sri Lankan Cricket Team, @ICC would have suspended such players for 5 years, why this biasedness that social media had to speak against it for ICC to take notice！ pic.twitter.com/YaGv5k1vEM
— M Fayyaz Khan (@MFayyazKhan15) May 13, 2019
@ICC is this not a tempering? Your officials are blind? Make this cheater Liam Plunkett @Liam628 ban from all formats of cricket. @TheRealPCB take action against this. Clear video of tempering. @ECB_cricket you have cheaters more than any othr country. #ENGvPAK @cricketworldcup pic.twitter.com/Cb5XamPS8P
— M Junaid Nazar (@JdJunaid122) May 13, 2019
Ball Tempering: Liam Plunkett
Caught RED HANDED in Pakistan VS England 2nd ODI
ICC Are You Sleeping ????? pic.twitter.com/tnBMuCDRBg
— Sikandar Khan Khattak (@Sikandarkhan64) May 13, 2019
What are your views on the matter? Let us know in the comments section.