Sports Cricket 14 Dec 2017 Hyderabad ex-cricket ...

Hyderabad ex-cricketer held for cheating

DECCAN CHRONICLE. | SAURABH M JOSHI
Published Dec 14, 2017, 12:54 am IST
Updated Dec 14, 2017, 9:05 am IST
Ravindra Wadekar
 Ravindra Wadekar

Mumbai: A former under-19 cricketer who played for the Hyderabad team in 2013 was arrested by the Mumbai crime branch in the budding cricketers’ cheating case.

This is the fourth arrest in the case in which several upcoming cricketers were duped for worth Rs 68 lakh by promising breaks in IPL and Ranji matches by a company named R.N. Sports.

The accused, Ravindra Wadekar (23), was the co-director in two Pune-based companies of the main accused Vijay Barate, former talent hunt for Hyderabad Sunrisers and chief of R.N. Sports.

The property cell had probed into their finances to ascertain if their finances were raised from the money which was used to cheat budding cricketers.

It is learnt that having come down from Mumbai, Wadekar was drafted into the Hyderabad team after being recommended by one of the HCA club secretaries and also by an international player. He was in the side for just one season.

During their interrogation, the officials learnt about Jitendra Tiwari,  the owner of a Rajkot-based company that had bagged the branding rights for England-West Indies series played in March at West Indies. The officials have now summoned Tiwari to question him on his links with Barate and how they raised money for bidding for the rights.

“It has also come to the fore that Wadekar had flown down to West Indies during the series and the pictures clicked there were also being used for duping the youngsters in a bid to convince them to pay up for getting a break in first class cricket,” said a crime branch officer.

Apart from Wadekar and Barate, the officials have arrested Jeevan Mukadam, 26 and Dinesh More, 24 in the case taking the tally to four. More suspects are being questioned.

The case came to the fore after a coach approached the crime branch with a complaint that Barate cheated his players. Subsequent inquiry revealed that the accused would take money and after a dummy tour to other state and matches with random teams, the players would be rejected and sent back. A team of BCCI’s Anti-Corruption Unit has also questioned the trio as their names figure on the cricketing body’s target list.

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