Karachi: Nov 6, 2011
In another intriguing twist to the spot-fixing saga, the elder brother of convicted bookie Mazhar Majeed has claimed that a Pakistani cricketer was responsible for blowing the lid off Salman Butt, Mohammad Asif and Mohammad Aamer's involvement in the scam.
"He was a member of the Pakistan team and he harbored a grudge against the then captain (Butt) and blew a whistle on the relationship between the players and Mazhar my brother," Azhar told Geo News in London.
"This player who is not well-educated set the (New of the World) journalist, Mazhar Mahmood on the track for the spot-fixing story," he added.
Azhar's brother, Mazhar who acted as an agent for Butt, Asif and Aamer was jailed for 32 months by a British crown court on Thursday for his role in the scandal.
The three Pakistani players got different jail terms as well from the court.
Azhar made it clear that while he knew and represented several leading Pakistani players including Saqlain Mushtaq, Inzamam-ul-Haq, Mohammad Yousuf, Kamran Akmal, Mohammad Asif, and Mushtaq Ahmed but he never knew what his brother was involved in.
Azhar added that Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) believed he was Mazhar's business partner, which was not true at all.
"It is disappointing what Mazhar did, it is deplorable and was wrong because both of us love cricket and are very passionate about it and Pakistan cricket in particular," Azhar said.
Interestingly, a top lawyer, who represented Test discard Yasir Hameed in his case against the 'News of the World', has also revealed how the newspaper informed him in writing that it was a Pakistani player who had tipped them off about the shady dealings of Mazhar, Butt, Asif and Amir.
"I have it in writing and the NOW has named the player but for obvious reasons I can't name him. But yes they also confirmed it was an insider who did the job. Definitely I believe there is more to come out of this case and more culprits need to be held accountable for their actions of damaging Pakistan cricket," lawyer Umar Khayyam said.
Khayyam managed to win the case against the now defunct NOW, which later apologised to Yasir for running a set up interview with him during last year's tour to England.
The video interview about which Yasir had no idea was also set up by Mazhar Mahmood the undercover reporter.
Azhar Majeed confirmed that the player who blew the whistle was angry with his captain over some issue and had even appeared in a commercial in 2006 which was arranged by Mazhar Mahmood. (PTI)