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PCB officials face backlash for gambling amid Asia Cup

September 11, 2023 Asia iGaming & Gambling

Two Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) officials, Umar Farooq Kalson and Adnan Ali, have come under scrutiny for visiting a Colombo casino during the ongoing Asia Cup. The ICC’s Anti-Corruption Unit prohibits such visits in its code of conduct. Social media has been abuzz with criticism from Pakistani fans who view the officials’ actions as “immature” and “careless.”

Around 15-20 PCB officials have traveled between Colombo and Lahore, with some stationed in Colombo due to Pakistan hosting the Asia Cup. The two officials in question initially claimed they visited the casino for dinner, a claim that drew ridicule from both social media and former cricket players.

Cricket writer Omair Alavi questioned the unusual choice, saying, “Who goes to a Casino to have food? Who goes to a gambling joint to have food? Who are they trying to fool?”

The PCB may take strict disciplinary action upon their return, with the Cricket Management Committee likely to address the incident despite the officials’ clarification. Former Test opener Mohsin Khan expressed surprise at their irresponsible behavior during the tournament.

This incident is reminiscent of a 2015 incident during the World Cup when Pakistan’s former captain and manager, Moin Khan, was called back to Pakistan for visiting a casino in Christchurch before a match against West Indies. Moin claimed innocence, but the PCB Chairman at the time, Shaharyar Khan, emphasized the importance of adhering to the board’s and ICC’s Anti-Corruption Code, which discourages visits to gambling establishments.

Notably, one senior PCB official reportedly received a strong reprimand from Jay Shah, the ACC chairman and BCCI supremo, during a meeting in Pallekele. Shah reacted strongly to some comments made by the PCB official during the meeting.

Original story by: The Hindustan Times

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