Match-fixing or rather its new form spot-fixing is a menace and must be fought if the game of cricket is to continue to exist. Fixing a match or even parts of match is a grave offense that shows utter disdain to the rules and spirit of the sport and to the perpetrator himself. With Butt, Asif and Amir now behind bars, it is a great sight that justice has been delivered but now we face the sad question, just how many have escaped the net? Surely these three Pakistani players aren't the only criminals. At least that is what logic and reasoning points to, unfortunately. I hope there is no truth in that but if there is, then it would truly be a shame.
“The game is still crook. The ICC anti-corruption unit are a bunch of idiots who employ people who don’t know what they are looking for.”And that is the sad reality that exists in the world of cricket. The ICC is truly clueless or else it would have been the ACSU that caught Butt and his Pakistani teammates and not a British tabloid. The failures of the ICC is out there in the public for all to see and till date the ICC hasn't caught a single player. It has always been some third party from the outside. I think that the ICC as a guardian of the game has failed its most important duty and must do an immediate rethink of how it is going to combat fixing. They have always been two steps behind and in most cases a mile behind and this is definitely not good for cricket and if the game is to be clean then drastic steps have to be taken, and taken now!
Gambling is illegal in India and most other sub-continent countries for the reason that the government is not capable to properly regulate it. This is why betting in this part of the world is all done below the table and it is here that fixing originated.
Betting isn't like other casino games such as poker, roulette, blackjack or the slot machine. It is similar as all these involve the element of luck and hence the risk of losing, but unlike in these games betting the risk is reduced or even nullified when you have certain information on the happenings in a match. The same could be said for perhaps poker, you can win if you know the other person's hand, but that alone isn't enough as it also depends on your hand. This is not so in betting and here lies the main difference.
Much of the fixing that has happened in cricket has been all done by bookies part of the 'illegal' set of betting, and this is one menace that the government has been fighting for years with no results. One of the main reasons for the existence of these underground betting lobbies is because betting is illegal in some countries. The remedy seems easy and all one has to do is legalize betting but that would lead to more complications and in countries like India, the government does not have the capability to have a proper regulating system. That is why you do not have casinos here despite the fact that casino games are quite popular. So betting is bound to take place here, and all underground. So closing down this industry is just not possible.
So the only other possibility is to have the player refrain from fixing. In an ideal world this is easily possible, but unfortunately we do not live in one such world. Thus it is important for the ICC to protect these players and shield them. How the ICC do it, I have no clue and am not the person to advise them. But from where I stand, what is being done is just not enough. Its no where near enough. If cricket is to win, ICC must change its approach.
For cricket to remain a clean and respected sport remedies for this menace called match-fixing must be found out and I hope the ICC's ACSU find this remedy soon.