Subject Material

Crooked Cricket

Published: 07.10.2010, Updated: 04.03.2017
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Cricket is big. Internationally it is even bigger than football. It is the national sport of England, and it is the number one sporting event in countries such as India, Australia, South Africa, and Pakistan.
Pakistan is now facing what turns out to be a scandal that will put the gentleman’s sport of cricket into disrepute. The dimension of the scandal overshadows even the flood disaster, terror from Taliban and bombings in Islamabad.

Cricket is popularCricket is popularThere is big money involved. In a cricket match there are a number of details and moves you can bet on, not only the result. The cricket players are the heroes of the nation, they are celebrities bigger than David Beckham, Christiano Ronaldo and Brad Pitt, put together. This makes the shock and shame even worse, as three of these players now face allegations of fixing the match result of a test match against England.

The scam has reached top political level as President Zardari has promised a full investigation which, he says, may result in life suspension for the players involved.  However, this does not reassure the public, as it is an open fact that corruption is prevailing in Pakistan’s political system. Even the President himself is accused of taking bribes.

During the match in question, which Pakistan lost, the scam was said to be all too obvious when Captain Salman Butt, clearly on purpose, stepped across the line. Commentators say that the three corrupt players have not only shamed themselves, but also Pakistan in general and the supposedly gentleman’s sport of cricket on a world basis.

  1. Why do you think cricket is so big in the countries mentioned in the article?
  2. Explain these expressions in English:
    • To overshadow
    • To take bribes
    • A celebrity
    • Corruption