Sreesanth no-ball: When an umpiring faux pas upset bookies

Investigations reveal the Rajasthan Royals pacer had bowled a no-ball to allegedly 'fulfill' his spot-fixing obligations, but the umpire failed to spot the error, which in turn enraged the bookies.

Updated: May 23, 2013 11:59 IST
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Police sources say there was a furore among bookies after Sreesanth's no-ball in the May 9 match went unnoticed by the umpires.

Not only did the bookies threaten and abuse Sreesanth, they held back his due payments. However, the fast bowler insisted on being paid and demanded a doubling of his rate. When Sreesanth's aid Jiju Janardhan called up the bookies to talk about the goof-up, the bookies told him they would revert about the payments.

The bookies, according to the police, were fed up with Sreesanth's tantrums and had threatened him with dire consequences. Later former Rajasthan and Gujarat cricketer Amit Singh mediated to calm things down.

On May 9, as the Rajasthan Royals took on the Kings XI Punjab in Mohali, Kerala pacer S Sreesanth, the Delhi Police allege, had instructions from bookies to bowl 14 runs in a fixed over. (Also read:Police say Sreesanth shopped for clothes worth 1.9 lakhs, bought smartphone for girlfriend)

Sreesanth, they have alleged, tucked a towel in his waistband to signal that he would now bowl a fixed over and did stretches. That the police claim was to allow the bookies time to place bets. (Read: the top 10 developments)

In his first ball, Sreesanth had bowled a dot delivery against Shaun Marsh, the Kings XI's number three batsman.

In the next, he was hit for four by Marsh through the covers.

He bowled his third ball, which a dot ball.

On the fourth he he gave away a single and the fifth he gave away four to take the total to 9 runs.

On the sixth and last ball, which went for another boundary, the police say, Sreesanth bowled a no-ball. That would take the total to 14 off the over. Only, the Umpire did not signal a no ball and 13 runs were recorded off the over. (Photo gallery: From cricket to court for Sreesanth)

The police allege they now have access to a phone conversation between a panicky Sreesanth and his friend Jiju, allegedly a bookie who has also been arrested in the spot-fixing case. In the conversation, Sreesanth allegedly asked his friend whether the bookies would still pay up, since he had kept his part of the deal. (Read: Sreesanth's statement)

The Delhi Police has now asked the BCCI for footage of Sreesanth's controversial over from all camera angles. The special cell has also enlisted top cricketers to help them understand field placement of the arrested cricketers.

Sreesanth said in a statement released by his lawyers yesterday, "I am innocent and have done no wrong. I have never indulged in any spot fixing."

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