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Sport Former Zimbabwe coach Heath Streak banned for breaching the ICC anti-corruption code

09:05  15 april  2021
09:05  15 april  2021 Source:   sportingnews.com

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Former Zimbabwe captain Heath Streak has been banned from all forms of cricket for breaching the ICC anti-corruption code.

Streak coached the Zimbabwe men’s team from 2009 to 2013 and 2016 to 2018 and is regarded as one of the greatest players to emerge from the country. He has admitted to five charges involving the supply of insider knowledge in exchange for payments, including bitcoins worth US $35,000 and an iPhone. Streak was also charged with introducing players - including a national captain - to people interested in obtaining information for betting purposes.

The 37-year-old has accepted the ban in lieu of a formal anti-corruption tribunal hearing.

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The ICC found Streak provided information involving both international and domestic matches. Charges relate in particular to the 2018 Tri-Series involving Zimbabwe, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka, Zimbabwe’s series against Afghanistan in 2018 and the 2018 editions of of the Indian Premier League and the Afghanistan Premier League.

Streak was also charged with obstructing or delaying the ICC’s investigation by deleting messages from his phone and for failing to report his dealings with a man referred to as “Mr X” in the ICC charge sheet. The ICC found Streak’s dealings with Mr X occurred repeatedly over a number of years.

“Heath Streak is an experienced former international cricketer and national team coach, who had participated in numerous anti-corruption education sessions and was fully aware of his responsibilities under the Code,” said the ICC Integrity Unit General Manager, Alex Marshall.

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“As a former captain and coach, he held a position of trust and owed a duty to uphold the integrity of the game. He breached the Code on several occasions, including facilitating the approach of four other players. At times, he also sought to obstruct and delay our investigation.

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“The offences did not affect the outcomes of any relevant matches and Mr Streak has agreed to assist the ICC anti-corruption education programme for which we are grateful. He has also expressed his remorse and contrition and entered this agreed sanction decision to avoid the need for a full disciplinary process. The sanction reflects this cooperation.”.

“As a former captain and coach, he held a position of trust and owed a duty to uphold the integrity of the game. He breached the Code on several occasions, including facilitating the approach of four other players. At times, he also sought to obstruct and delay our investigation.

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“The offences did not affect the outcomes of any relevant matches and Mr Streak has agreed to assist the ICC anti-corruption education programme for which we are grateful. He has also expressed his remorse and contrition and entered this agreed sanction decision to avoid the need for a full disciplinary process. The sanction reflects this cooperation.”

The charges represent the biggest corruption scandal to hit Zimbabwe cricket, particularly given Streak’s achievements as a player. Streak took 216 Test wickets and 237 ODI wickets in an International career spanning 12 years from 1993 to 2005, including a period widely considered Zimbabwe’s ‘golden era’.

A statement signed by Zimbabwe Cricket chairman, Tavengwa Mukuhlani, described Streak as “corrupt, greedy and selfish”.

"Streak was a powerful figure adored by many and held up as an idol for future generations of cricketers. In doing this, he held a position of trust and owed a duty to uphold the integrity of the game," said Mukuhlani in the statement. "But, as we and the rest of the world now know, Streak was also a corrupt, greedy and selfish character who regrettably abused his status and position in pursuit of dirty benefits.

"He has let cricket down. He has let down the teams and players he coached. He has let the nation down. He has let down the fans - including impressionable children - who loved and idolised him.

Streak will be free to resume his involvement in cricket in March 2029.

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