Bodi’s ban, announced at tea on the fourth day of the final Test between South Africa and England at Centurion, is the latest, dramatic development in the ongoing match-fixing scandal, one which the sport’s governors in this country hope will be resolved sooner, rather than later.
CSA chief executive Haroon Lorgat said: “Our attitude to corruption will always be one of zero tolerance. There is no doubt that Mr Bodi’s actions have threatened the integrity and the image of the game that we love and he must be handed a strong punishment. We have had many discussions with Mr Bodi and he accepts the folly of his actions.”
CSA said it believed no matches were fixed in this season’s RamSlam and Bodi’s attempts to do so were caught “in the planning phase”.
Bodi has admitted to trying to fix matches in the T20 competition. The investigations into fixing in that tournament are continuing and it is understood more names will be revealed.
“The evidence we’ve got and the confession made by Bodi suggest we caught this in a planning phase and no fixes have been activated,” Lorgat said.
CSA said Bodi was an “intermediary” for an illegal gambling organisation trying to fix matches in this season’s T20 RamSlam Challenge.
That event is the only South African domestic competition broadcast overseas to England, the US and, perhaps more significantly, the sub-continent.
Bodi’s ban was enforced after he admitted charges of “contriving or attempting to fix matches”, in the RamSlam. He was charged on December 31.
Under the terms of the ban, Bodi, who played two One-Day Internationals and a T20 match for South Africa, cannot be involved with any function, match – domestic or international – in any way. Five years of his ban have been suspended unless he is found guilty of the same offence.
Lorgat urged the public and media to be patient while the investigation continues, saying the wild speculation, with a number of players’ names hinted at in recent weeks, didn’t help matters.
“We can’t control the speculation or the public desire for more names to come out, but it definitely hampers the process. We can’t comment any further on anyone involved in the investigation.”
Lorgat said players, in accordance with CSA’s anti-corruption policy, had reported Bodi’s approaches. “We are fortunate that several players rejected his approaches and, as a direct result of our integrity processes, which include CSA and SACA (South African Cricketers’ Association) player education programmes, the matter was brought to light and meticulously investigated.”
Lorgat would not say how long the investigation would take. “We shouldn’t be naïve to think it might not be the same syndicates and that they don’t co-operate in different countries.”
The department of sport and recreation would not be drawn on the ban. Spokesman Esethu Hasane said the department and Minister Fikile Mbalula would not comment until the investigation had been concluded.
CSA board chairman Louis von Zeuner said the board would publicly release information as the matter is a “very complex” one.
“…It was not possible to share anything before today. As much as we regret the situation, we complement the CEO that put structures in place that brought this to the fore. What is important is we know the environment we are working in and we will not leave any stone unturned in this matter.”
Original source: Banned Bodi ‘caught in planning phase’