Today, November 3, 2011, a high profile court case in the UK has drawn to a conclusion and left former Pakistan cricket captain Salman Butt jailed for 30 months. Also found guilty are test match bowler Mohammad Asif, 28, jailed for one year and bowler Mohammad Amir, 19, sentenced to six months. The final guilty person was cricket agent Mazhar Majeed, who was jailed for two years and eight months
Earlier this year the players were suspended from match cricket for 5 years. They are appealing this decision but many feel a life-time ban would have been nore appropriate. All were also fined. It is hoped that the stiff sentencing will send out a stark message to others who may consider acting fraudulently.
The judge told the convicted men, "Whenever people look back on a surprising event in a game or a surprising result, or whenever in the future there are surprising events or results, followers of the game who have paid good money to watch it live or watch it on television will be left to wonder whether there has been fixing and whether what they have been watching is a genuine contest between bat and ball."
It certainly will make many people question missed goals in football, for instance, more closely. Sports professionals are very highly paid and match fixing is pure greed. Those convicted deserve what a court might throw at them.
You can read the full transcript of the judges summing up comments here.