Lewis' information will be passed to police

The England and Wales Cricket Board are to pass on information from Chris Lewis to the police following the former England all-rounder's "match-fixing" revelations.

Lewis was interviewed yesterday by the ECB following comments he made in a Sunday newspaper claiming that the sports promoter, Ashim Kheterpal, had revealed to him the identities of three famous England players who had taken cash in exchange for unfairly influencing matches. Lewis was speaking in the aftermath of the sacking of Hansie Cronje as South Africa captain because of his admission of "dishonesty" to his employers over matchfixing allegations.

Having summoned Lewis to account for his remarks and detail all the information in his possession, the ECB, who will also continue their own investigation into the matter, last night released a statement saying: "Gerard Elias, QC, Chairman of the Discipline Committee, and Simon Pack, International Teams Director, on behalf of the ECB, today interviewed Chris Lewis in the company of his solicitor regarding the comments attributed to him in Sunday's News of the World.

"Mr Lewis indicated his desire to continue to co-operate fully with the Board and has put all information in his possession into the hands of the Board.

"As a result the Board is passing this information to the police. At the same time the board will continue its investigations with a view to determining whether evidence exists in relation to betting and match-fixing which might justify disciplinary action under the Board's regulations."

The former captain of India, Mohammad Azharuddin, yesterday rebutted allegations of match-fixing. Azharuddin said that no bookmaker had ever approached him and he denied the allegations, which were published in the Indian weekly news magazine, Outlook.

The magazine carried the transcript of an conversation taped by police allegedly between Azharuddin and a bookie in which the he had asked his bet to be placed on South Africa during the 1996 one-day series. "I deny all the allegations as false, untrue and baseless," Azharuddin said yesterday.

Hampshire's new signing Shane Warne urged Hansie Cronje to "be honest with everyone" over the money-for-information scandal.

Cronje was sacked as South Africa's captain after admitting to his country's United Cricket Board that he received money from an Indian bookmaker for providing information. Warne said: "The best thing is for him to come out, be honest with everyone and say what happened so we can all get on with playing cricket."

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