The International Cricket Council has confirmed that a certain player from the Hong Kong cricket team is under probe with Dave Richardson, the International Cricket Council (ICC) chief executive, acknowledging that he is being investigated by the anti-corruption unit. The player in question is Irfan Ahmed, the Hong Kong all-rounder, who was suspended by the ICC in January after failing to report an approach. Ahmed was allegedly approached by the same agents who paid disgraced New Zealand batsman, Lou Vincent, to fix county matches in England.
News of the probe comes just as Hong Kong prepares to take on Zimbabwe in the qualifiers of the 2016 ICC World T20 in Nagpur on Tuesday, 8 March. Speaking at a press conference in New Delhi, Richardson said: "In recent times you would have read in the media that a particular player was suspended from his country and the investigations relate to the same team," Wisden India quoted him as saying.
"[Ronnie] Flanagan [ICC anti-corruption unit head] said one of the teams was under investigation. We need to take that in perspective. We shouldn't speculate that it involves any match-fixing or spot-fixing with any particular players or particular team. An investigation will resolve it.
"Often we get our intelligence from players reporting various approaches that corrupt people make to them."
The team's media spokesperson said: "The reporting seems to be a bit vague and at this stage we are not sure what's going on. But it seems to be referring to Irfan Ahmed, who was provisionally suspended under the ACSU code. I can only guess that that's the case the latest comments refer to," according to Wisden India.
"We have heard that he (Richardson) had made this comment but it wasn't at the press conference but somewhere outside. So we are waiting to find out whether it's actually confirmed. This is an awkward position to be in.
"We will certainly be as open as we possibly can be. We will be pushing for a quick resolution on this matter. This is not at all what we want to be associated with."
Hong Kong are drawn in Group B of the qualifiers along with Zimbabwe, Afghanistan and Scotland. The pool winners will progress to the Super 10 Group 1 with England, South Africa, Sri Lanka and the West Indies.