Lord's clash to go ahead

Today's fourth NatWest Series match at Lord's is set to go ahead as scheduled, the England and Wales Cricket Board have confirmed this morning.

The cricket world was still awaiting an official ECB statement, containing their reaction to Pakistan Cricket Board chairman Ijaz Butt's astonishing counter-claims - during the ongoing spot-fixing crisis - that English players were paid "enormous amounts of money" to lose Friday's one-day international at the Oval.



But an ECB spokesman has told The Guardian that the home board are "planning as though the game [between England and Pakistan] will take place" and that is "unlikely to change".

Butt insisted earlier today that his side are happy for the series, currently standing at 2-1 to England after Pakistan's 23-run win three days ago, to continue.

Yesterday, the PCB chairman claimed in an interview with NDTV that there was talk in the bookmaking fraternity that some England players had "taken enormous amounts of money" to fix Friday's match.



He also said then: "We have positive proofs (of the allegations) here before us." But today, he told BBC Radio 5 Live: "I have never said this.



"If you listen to the full tape of the NDTV interview, the bookies are saying this. I am not saying this."



Asked about overnight fears the remaining matches - at Lord's and the Rose Bowl on Wednesday - could be scrapped by the ECB, Butt added: "If they [the ECB] want to scrap it they can scrap it. We will go ahead with it."



Butt was quoted in the interview with NDTV as saying: "There is loud and clear talk in bookie circles that some English players have taken enormous amounts of money to lose the match [the third ODI]. No wonder there was such a collapse."



When asked in the same interview whether the PCB had any proof of the allegations regarding English players, Butt responded with a question: "Did you ask the other people who made allegations against our players whether they had any proof? What did they say? We have thought about this properly and we have positive proofs here before us just like they say they have also."



Butt was keen to focus instead on the situation of Pakistan's suspended trio Salman Butt, Mohammad Asif and Mohammad Aamer - who have been charged under the International Cricket Council's anti-corruption code following allegations that no-balls were deliberately bowled to defraud illegal bookmakers during the fourth Test at Lord's.



"This is not a conspiracy to defraud the bookies. Our boys were suspended by the ICC, and they had no business to suspend them without any proof," he said.



"We feel that this a conspiracy to defraud and defame Pakistan cricket."



In another indication that the match was set to be played, England arrived at Lord's in very good time for today's encounter, shortly after 10.30 this morning and took part in some warm-up exercises in the nets.

As of 11.10 the Pakistan team had not arrived but there was no suggestion that they were not planning to turn up.



Pakistan also arrived by 11.15am, and there was every indication both teams were preparing to play - with or without any statement from the ECB before the scheduled start time of 1pm.

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
Books should be for everyone, says Els, 8. Publisher Scholastic now agrees
booksAn eight-year-old saw a pirate book was ‘for boys’ and took on the publishers
Life and Style
Mary Beard received abuse after speaking positively on 'Question Time' about immigrant workers: 'When people say ridiculous, untrue and hurtful things, then I think you should call them out'
tech
Life and Style
Most mail-order brides are thought to come from Thailand, the Philippines and Romania
life
News
i100
Life and Style
tech
Voices
Margaret Thatcher, with her director of publicity Sir Gordon Reece, who helped her and the Tory Party to victory in 1979
voicesThe subject is being celebrated by the V&A museum, triggering some happy memories for former PR man DJ Taylor
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband

Chuka Umunna: A virus of racism runs through Ukip

The shadow business secretary on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
Yemen crisis: This exotic war will soon become Europe's problem

Yemen's exotic war will soon affect Europe

Terrorism and boatloads of desperate migrants will be the outcome of the Saudi air campaign, says Patrick Cockburn
Marginal Streets project aims to document voters in the run-up to the General Election

Marginal Streets project documents voters

Independent photographers Joseph Fox and Orlando Gili are uploading two portraits of constituents to their website for each day of the campaign
Game of Thrones: Visit the real-life kingdom of Westeros to see where violent history ends and telly tourism begins

The real-life kingdom of Westeros

Is there something a little uncomfortable about Game of Thrones shooting in Northern Ireland?
How to survive a social-media mauling, by the tough women of Twitter

How to survive a Twitter mauling

Mary Beard, Caroline Criado-Perez, Louise Mensch, Bunny La Roche and Courtney Barrasford reveal how to trounce the trolls
Gallipoli centenary: At dawn, the young remember the young who perished in one of the First World War's bloodiest battles

At dawn, the young remember the young

A century ago, soldiers of the Empire – many no more than boys – spilt on to Gallipoli’s beaches. On this 100th Anzac Day, there are personal, poetic tributes to their sacrifice
Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves

Follow the money as never before

Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves, reports Rupert Cornwell
Samuel West interview: The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents

Samuel West interview

The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents
General Election 2015: Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Fashion editor, Alexander Fury, on what the leaders' appearances tell us about them
Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

The architect of the HeForShe movement and head of UN Women on the world's failure to combat domestic violence
Public relations as 'art'? Surely not

Confessions of a former PR man

The 'art' of public relations is being celebrated by the V&A museum, triggering some happy memories for DJ Taylor
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef succumbs to his sugar cravings with super-luxurious sweet treats

Bill Granger's luxurious sweet treats

Our chef loves to stop for 30 minutes to catch up on the day's gossip, while nibbling on something sweet
London Marathon 2015: Paula Radcliffe and the mother of all goodbyes

The mother of all goodbyes

Paula Radcliffe's farewell to the London Marathon will be a family affair
Everton vs Manchester United: Steven Naismith demands 'better' if Toffees are to upset the odds against United

Steven Naismith: 'We know we must do better'

The Everton forward explains the reasons behind club's decline this season
Arsenal vs Chelsea: Praise to Arsene Wenger for having the courage of his convictions

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Praise to Wenger for having the courage of his convictions