Connect with us

Cricket News

Why punishing bookie Sanjeev Chawla could be tough in India

Jasvinder Sidhu



Sanjeev Chawla was extradited from the UK to India in February. Photo: PTI

New Delhi: A day before South Africa’s 1st ODI against Zimbabwe on January 21, 2000, Hansie Cronje was on his way to the nets at the Wanderers.

In between, Hamid ‘Banjo’ Cassim, a familiar face in South Africa’s dressing room, introduced Cronje to a well-dressed and soft-spoken young man Sanjeev Chawla.

It had happened during a triangular ODI series also involving England, ahead of South Africa’s tour of India.

Following several telephonic conversations, Chawla made his offer to Cronje.

“Hansie, you can also make some cash if you could maybe lose a match,” Chawla, recently extradited to India from England told Cronje.

“I am not prepared to do that,” South Africa’s captain had responded then.

2000 match fixing: How 5 crore extortion call exposed Cronje, bookie Chawla

But the erstwhile London-based Chawla gave him a mobile phone box and told him to think about the offer.

The box, which Cronje opened later in his room, contained $15,000.

Kochi the scene of ‘action’

Jump cut to March, 2000. Chawla landed in India and checked himself into the hotel where South Africa was put up in Kochi. The magic of dollars started working from this ODI series.

As Cronje later confessed, “I picked up the telephone at reception, phoned his (Chawla) room and said “yes, it is okay, we can go ahead”.

That is how the 2000 match-fixing saga began, shaking the cricketing world and exposing one of cricket’s premier captains.

Chawla was extradited to India last month and remains in judicial custody. He is expected to reveal some key names when investigators interrogate him.

King Commission Revelations

In his affidavit submitted to the King commission, South African businessman and bookie Cassim revealed, “Sanjay (Sanjeev) and Cronje had a conversation for approximately 10 minutes relating to cricket. They were talking among other things about match forecasting, pitch conditions, team selection and the toss. I also heard them discussing team selection and who would be batting in which order and who would be bowling.”

Why tackling fixing is at the bottom of BCCI’s priority list

According to Cassim, the conversation happened in a Durban hotel room in his presence. Interestingly, Cronje and Cassim knew Sanjeev as Sanjay. His real name surfaced only after investigations.

South Africa’s government formed the EL King Commission after Delhi Police cracked the fixing scam in 2000.

According to investigations and Cronje’s deposition before the commission, the South African captain agreed with Chawla to throw away the Kochi ODI against India, which was played on March 9, 2000.

But it did not go as planned. South Africa scored 301 runs, but India won comfortably.

As per the conversations tapped by Delhi Police, Chawla was very upset as Cronje’s team scored more than what he wanted, upsetting the betting pattern in the market.

In one conversation, Cronje was heard cursing Indian wicket-keeper Sameer Dighe for dropping three catches as his shoddy glovework ensured that South Africa scored 300, unwillingly.

Cronje hadn’t received any money for that match.

Cronje’s gifts

For the next three matches I was only forecasting what I thought could happen, as I really wanted to win the series,” Cronje wrote in his confession latter to Cricket South Africa.

“I mentioned some names again, and quoted some figures again, none of which I can even remember, simply as a lie. Once again, I want to make it clear that I never spoke to any player.”

Cronje claimed in all investigations against him that he was making Chawla a fool and no other member of his team was involved or he approached them. But some of his teammates revealed that he made offers.

Cronje accepted later that he charged $100,000 to $150,000 for providing pieces of information. He was in touch with six bookie and punters named John, Anil, Sanjeev, Cassim and Marlon Aronstam between 1995 and 2000.

Marlon even gifted expensive a leather jacket to Cronje’s wife.

During investigations, Chawla also claimed that he promised to deposit $100,000 into Cronje’s bank account in London for losing a match.

Why a proactive BCCI is now essential to curb fixing in Indian cricket

With Chawla in their net, Indian authorities could now dig deep into the roots of an international syndicate of corrupters.

It could also enable authorities investigate the link between underworld and corrupters. All investigations so far indicate that most syndicates fuel money in terrorism against India.

IPL spot-fixing

In 2013 IPL spot-fixing case police had invoked the Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act 1999 (MCOCA) against three Rajasthan Royal players.

Though that case collapsed in a lower court but pieces of evidence had suggested that the bookie named in that case were in touch with people who work for Dawood Ibrahim.

But prima facie, it seems that it is difficult for Indian authorities to keep Chawla behind bars for a long time as this case is too old and India doesn’t have any law punishing someone involve in fixing in sports.

UK agree to extradite Chawla only because gambling is legal there and fixing in sports mean cheating with people who are betting legally.

But the first vital question is who the complainant is in India. The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) is undoubtedly not.

Most tainted players of the 2000 fixing scandal are back in BCCI’s fold. Hence punishing Chawla could prove to be very tricky.

The Delhi Public gambling act 1955 says: “Accused shall be liable to imprisonment for a term which may extend to six months and shall also be liable to be fined which may extend to one thousand rupees”.

Anyone’s guess how long Chawla is going to remain in India.

“Get more sports news, cricket news and football updates, log on to Follow us on Facebook or Twitter and Subscribe YouTube Channel.”

Continue Reading


  1. Pingback: Match-fixing: Alleged bookie Sanjeev Chawla gets bail

  2. Pingback: Match fixing: Alleged bookie Sanjeev Chawla's bail upheld by Delhi HC

  3. ปั้มไลค์

    May 18, 2020 at 6:47 pm

    Like!! Great article post.Really thank you! Really Cool.

  4. Thank you ever so for you article post.

  5. I learn something new and challenging on blogs I stumbleupon everyday.

  6. เบอร์มงคล

    June 9, 2020 at 6:16 pm

    I always spent my half an hour to read this web site’s articles or reviews daily along with a mug of coffee.

  7. SMS

    June 15, 2020 at 12:07 pm

    These are actually great ideas in concerning blogging.

  8. then g

    June 20, 2020 at 4:22 am

    Hi to all, how is everything, I think every one is getting more from this web page, and
    your views are nice designed for new visitors.

  9. g she

    June 21, 2020 at 11:26 pm

    Please let me know if you’re looking for a article author for your weblog.
    You have some really good articles and I think I would be a good asset.
    If you ever want to take some of the load off, I’d absolutely love to write some material for your
    blog in exchange for a link back to mine. Please shoot me an e-mail if interested.

  10. g

    June 22, 2020 at 9:34 am

    Attractive section of content. I just stumbled upon your
    website and in accession capital to assert that I acquire in fact enjoyed account your blog posts.
    Any way I’ll be subscribing to your feeds and even I achievement you access
    consistently fast.

  11. books

    June 27, 2020 at 8:42 am

    Little Black Book App Educational Institutions Governance

    Also visit my web site :: books

  12. cbd oil that works 2020

    June 28, 2020 at 12:42 am

    you are actually a excellent webmaster. The web site loading pace is amazing.
    It seems that you’re doing any unique trick.
    Also, The contents are masterpiece. you have done a magnificent job
    on this topic!

  13. pdf

    June 29, 2020 at 5:46 pm

    Science Central Newcastle Address About Scientists In India

    Also visit my web blog: pdf


    July 1, 2020 at 3:33 am

    Catholic School Rules Awaken The Giant Within Changed My Life

    Look into my webpage: books (

  15. books

    July 1, 2020 at 1:30 pm

    Science Of Mind Newsletter Sell Books Amazon


    July 2, 2020 at 7:05 am

    The Haunting Of Hill House Book Free Victorian Realism

    Here is my web blog … pdf –

  17. library

    July 2, 2020 at 5:35 pm

    Elaborate The Movement Of Renaissance In English Literature Joyce Meyer Devotional Trusting God Day By

    Feel free to surf to my site – library

  18. bog

    July 3, 2020 at 10:42 am

    The Mister El James Pdf Ita Laura Lippman Husband

    Here is my web page … bog

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.