Four South African cricketers including former national test team wicketkeeper Thami Tsolekile, have been banned for between seven and 12 years for their involvement in match-fixing during 2015 Ram Slam T20 tournament, Cricket South Africa announced on Monday (August 8).

Jean Symes, Ethy Mbhalathi, and Pumelela Matshikwe are the other three to receive the lengthy ban. All four were also found guilty of failing to disclose the full details of matters evidencing a breach of the Code by another participant and failing to co-operate with the investigators by knowingly providing false information to them.

While Tsolekile and Jean Symes have been banned for 12 and 7 years respectively,the duo of Ethy Mbhalati and Pumelela Matshikwe have each been given ten-year bans.

The ban, which has been accepted by all four, will be effective from August 1, 2016. It will  prevent them from being involved in cricket in any capacity.

Symes, Matshikwe, and Tsolekile were part of the Lions’ squad, while Mbhalati plied his trade for the Titans.

“Whilst there has been no evidence to suggest that an actual fix in any match was carried out, these players all participated in material discussions about match fixing. In fact, they all went further and accepted, or agreed to accept in the future, sums of money which they knew or ought to have known was given to them to partake in activity that would amount to a breach of the Code, or bring the game into disrepute,” Haroon Lorgat, the chief executive of CSA, said on Monday (August 8).

“Our attitude towards any form of corruption is clear and hence why we have imposed such firm sanctions. To their credit, all of these players eventually admitted their misconduct and co-operated with the investigators. They have also shown remorse for their actions. Importantly, each of them has indicated a willingness to engage in anti-corruption education to assist us to prevent this kind of conduct in the future,” he added.

    An avid sports lover, i always wanted to pursue a career in football. But just like the millions out there i did not put in the hard work needed to achieve my dream and now i have become a fan instead of the player. Anyway, writing for sports has kept me closer to this field. One more thing, yours sincerely is a die-hard Liverpool fan. You will never walk alone.

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