IPL 2024: Bookies evicted from stadium during games

The tournament have been surrounded by many corrupt activities in the past

By Web Desk
April 17, 2024
A large replica of IPL trophy during opening ceremony. - BCCI

Four suspected bookies were removed from luxury boxes at two venues – Jaipur and Mumbai – during the games of the ongoing 2024 Indian Premier League (IPL 2024), as reported by the Hindustan Times

The Anti-Corruption Unit (ACU) of the Indian Cricket Board (BCCI) identified two bookmakers at each venue and handed them over to the local police.

During the Rajasthan Royals' home match against Delhi Capitals on March 28, two suspects were removed from a corporate box. On April 1, two other suspected bookies were asked to leave the President’s Box inside the Wankhede Stadium during a Rajasthan Royals away match against Mumbai Indians.

Bookmakers utilise stadium access to reduce the time delay associated with live broadcasts, referred to as pitch-sliding, to profit from illegal betting. They may also potentially gain access to players and officials. 

Although betting is illegal in India, it remains the largest market for cricket betting globally. There is no specific legislation in place to prosecute those involved in betting and match-fixing.

The incident also raises questions about the allocation of passes to luxury boxes. For instance, the President’s Box in Mumbai is exclusively for invitees. Additionally, this box is situated near the players' dressing rooms.

During the 2021 IPL, potential corruptors recruited an accredited cleaner at Delhi's Ferozeshah Kotla Stadium to engage in pitch-siding before the ACU apprehended him.

It must be noted that many corrupt activities have surrounded IPL in the past. In 2013, the league was shaken by a spot-fixing scandal when the Delhi Police arrested three Rajasthan Royals players – S Sreesanth, Ajit Chandila, and Ankeet Chavan – after their match in Mumbai over alleged spot-fixing. At the same time, eleven bookies were also detained.

The players received life bans after the investigation while two franchises Rajasthan Royals and Chennai Super Kings were banned for two years from participating.