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Match-fixing ‘kingpin’ Ravinder Dandiwal arrested, to be quizzed by BCCI anti-corruption officials



Punjab Police arrested alleged bookmaker Ravinder Dandiwal on Monday in connection with a recent T20 match played in Mohali but streamed online as a game hosted in Sri Lanka. The game, held in June, had caught the attention of BCCI’s Anti-Corruption Unit (ACU), the police and Sri Lanka Cricket.

“Ravinder Dandiwal, who has emerged kingpin in the entire racket, was arrested on Monday,” Pal Singh, deputy superintendent of police in Kharar, confirmed to PTI. “He has been arrested in connection with ongoing investigations into the T20 match that was played, in which already two arrests have been made.

“His role into the entire racket is being further probed,” Singh added about Dandiwal, from whom police have seized some laptops, mobile phones and documents. Preliminary investigations revealed that Dandiwal had organised fraudulent tournaments in the past as well, Singh said.

The BCCI ACU will be in Chandigarh on Tuesday to share and gather information on Dandiwal, who had been on the BCCI’s radar for the past four years.

“Whatever information we have we will pass it on to Punjab Police, if it helps them in their investigation or whatever we can gather from them, we will gather it. Our team will be from Delhi,” BCCI ACU chief Ajit Singh told PTI. “He has been arrested in connection to the T20 game (that was portrayed as a T20 game in Sri Lanka but was actually happening in Sawara village). We would like to have access to him also but that depends on Punjab Police. We are hopeful we will get it.”

Police had got vital clues about Dandiwal from the two other accused, Pankaj and Raju, arrested on Thursday.

The Indian Express had reported on Friday that the game played on June 29 took place in Sawara village, close to Chandigarh, but was streamed as an ‘Uva T20 League’ match in Sri Lanka”s Badulla, home of the Uva Province Cricket Association (UPCA). Both UPCA and Sri Lanka Cricket denied their involvement in the league shortly afterwards.

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IPL 2020 SOPs: Rigorous testing, restricted movement, one team per hotel



The IPL has laid out a rigorous testing process for players and support staff who will need to clear at least four tests along with a week-long quarantine before they can start training in the UAE. Details of the testing process and frequency feature among the draft document of standard operating procedures (SOPs), which the IPL shared with franchises on Monday.

The SOPs include details on dos and don’ts during travel, lodging and training during the 53-day tournament, which is scheduled to be played at three venues in the UAE – Dubai, Abu Dhabi and Sharjah – between September 19 and November 10. The BCCI is yet to announce the tournament schedule as it awaits a formal nod from the Indian government.

ESPNcricinfo understands that teams have been asked to travel with “minimum” contingents and not before August 20. Among the SOPs, the IPL has permitted families of squad members to travel to the UAE and stay inside the bio-secure bubble, but the final decision on that front will remain with each franchise. However, the IPL has made it mandatory that each team will need to have a medical doctor on board to help the franchise mitigate risks as well educate the squad during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Testing protocols

As per the draft SOPs, IPL has recommended to franchises that all members carry out two tests before their squads depart for the UAE. Those two tests will need to be done at 24-hour intervals as per the World Health Organisation norms. They will also need to be done before the player or coaching/support staff member assembles in the city where they will board the flight for the UAE. The validity of the second test result will need to last for at least four days (96 hours) including the date of landing in the UAE.

The player or staff in question can only fly out if both those tests come out negative. Anyone infected will need to undergo the mandatory two-week quarantine period as per the guidelines of the Indian government. After that, the person will need to undergo a fresh set of two tests and clear them before joining the squad in the UAE.

Once the squad lands in the UAE, all members are to undergo another test at the airport before heading to the team hotel. From this point, the IPL testing protocol will kick in.

As per the protocol, every squad will undergo a mandatory seven-day quarantine in the team hotel. During this week every squad member will be tested thrice – on days 1, 3 and 6. Once all those results come back negative, the squad can start training.

After that, all squad members will be tested on the fifth day of every week throughout the tournament.

“The IPL has permitted families of squad members to travel to the UAE and stay inside the bio-secure bubble, but the final decision on that front will remain with each franchise.”

As far as the non-Indian players and staff are concerned, they will need to carry the negative result of the test carried out in the last 96 hours before arriving in the UAE.

As per the local rules, during the tournament squads travelling to Abu Dhabi will need to carry negative test results carried out in the previous 48 hours. As per the IPL guidelines, if the weekly test result has expired during the course of travel to Abu Dhabi, squads will need to undergo a fresh test again.

Testing positive during the tournament

In such a scenario, it is understood that the person in question would need to isolate but outside the bubble, considering that aerosols – respiratory droplets – can easily be transmitted. That infected person would be put in a sanitised room within the same hotel. One of the guidelines recommends having a few rooms where the squad is staying to isolate any infected person(s).

No stepping out of the bubble

It is understood the IPL has made it clear no person can go in and out of the bio-secure bubble during the course of the tournament. Strict social distancing norms have been recommended, including squad members discouraged from having any close contact even within the bubble which includes moving between hotel rooms. Squad members have also been asked to wear masks outside their rooms at hotels and avoid any unnecessary movement.

There will be exceptions. If an injured player needs to visit a hospital for X-rays or scans, then the guidelines suggest the movement be restricted to the clinic with minimal interaction with outsiders.

One team per hotel

As per the guidelines all eight teams will stay in separate hotels. The franchises have been asked to book a hotel or resort exclusively for the squads with no outsiders allowed. If that is not possible, then IPL has recommended they stay somewhere with a separate wing, entrance and exit.

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England hopes of adding Jeetan Patel to coaching staff for Pakistan Tests thwarted by visa rules



England’s hopes of adding Jeetan Patel to their coaching staff for the Test series against Pakistan have been thwarted by visa regulations.

Patel, the former New Zealand off-spinner, had been due to join the Test squad as spin bowling consultant for the second and third matches of the series against Pakistan.

Those plans have now been abandoned, however, after it transpired Patel’s visa only permits him to work as a player in the UK. He will, therefore, return to Warwickshire – to whom he is contracted until the end of the season – and is expected to appear for them in the Vitality Blast T20 competition. He is expected to retire as a player at the end of the season.

The England management have said they “will consider all options before appointing a spin bowling consultant for the remainder of this season”.

In an ideal world, Richard Dawson would be a strong candidate. As head coach of Gloucestershire, however, Dawson is currently busy with his county side.

In the longer term, Patel could still fulfil a coaching role in the England set-up. It is thought that the ECB will, when finances and other practical issues allow, appoint both a spin bowling coach for the England sides and another to work with players around the counties. Patel, who had enjoyed previous spells in the consultancy role, remains a strong candidate for either position. Dawson would also be a favoured candidate if he was prepared to leave Gloucestershire.

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Recent Match Report – Lancashire vs Leicestershire North Group 2020



Leicestershire 409 for 8 (Slater 172, Ackermann 94) and 150 for 3 (Ackermann 73*) beat Lancashire 322 (Vilas 90, Croft 63) and 236 (Davies 54, Croft 52*, Mike 4-39) by seven wickets

Captain Colin Ackermann led the charge as unfancied Leicestershire completed a sensational seven-wicket victory with just eight balls remaining in the Bob Willis Trophy match against Lancashire at Blackfinch New Road.

Ackermann finished on 73 not out off just 41 balls as the Foxes chased down their 150 runs off a 17-overs target, hitting ten fours and a six in an extraordinary display of shot-making on a slow pitch. Young left-hander Harry Dearden played an important role, hitting Lancashire strike bowler Tom Bailey for consecutive sixes over long-on before reverse-sweeping left-arm spinner Tom Hartley high over extra cover for another maximum.

It was hard to take for a Lancashire side badly hit by England call-ups and injuries, and for whom three bowlers were making a debut, and in particular Steven Croft, who earlier in the day led a determined defensive effort, finishing unbeaten on 52 after facing 185 balls before Lancashire were bowled out for 236 in their second innings.

The morning had seen Leicestershire make an encouraging start after Lancashire resumed on their overnight score of 96 for 3, Chris Wright finding the inside edge of Rob Jones’ bat and seeing the ball loop from the batsman’s front pad high into leg side, where George Rhodes, running in from short midwicket, took a comfortable catch.

Lancashire captain Dave Vilas was joined by Croft and the two experienced batsmen dug in. Leicestershire’s bowlers knew they had to be patient on a slow, placid track, though Vilas did give one chance, clipping a delivery from left-arm seamer Dieter Klein low down the leg-side, but wicket-keeper Harry Swindells, diving to his left, could not hang on.

It was beginning to look as though Vilas and Croft could match or exceed their first-innings partnership of 130 until the shortly before lunch, when the South African tried to steer a wide delivery from left-arm spinner Parkinson through point, only to bottom edge the ball into his stumps.

If that was fortuitous for Parkinson, his next wicket was anything but, George Balderson going back to a delivery which spun sharply back into the left-hander’s pads to dismiss him leg before wicket. Croft remained immoveable, but the loss of Danny Lamb, leg before to a full delivery from Ben Mike, lifted Leicestershire spirits as they went in to tea with 32 overs remaining in the match.

Mike made it two in two balls by immediately producing a beauty to find the edge of Bailey’s bat, Swindells taking a brilliant one-handed catch to his right. Hartley fought hard before being leg before on the back pad to an Ackermann delivery which turned, and Ed Moulton’s second duck of the match left the Foxes a target of almost nine runs an over.

Having hit 94 before being run out by his partner in the first innings, Ackermann played superbly to complete a personal return of 168 runs in the match, along with two wickets and some outstanding captaincy in overseeing the taking of 20 wickets on a pitch which offered the bowlers relatively little assistance.

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