Bumble says cricket has problems, but all players are fully aware of their responsibilities, even the young ones.
Last Updated: 01/09/10 12:18pm
I don't believe some of the rhetoric that is going around at the moment about Mohammad Amir's supposed involvement in the Pakistan spot-fixing allegations.
"The poor young lad," they say. "He's only 18, he must have been sucked in."
I don't care if he's only 18. At that age you're old enough to make decisions and know the difference between right and wrong. This is not a child, this is an international cricketer.
Every single international player has been conditioned through the ICC and through their own boards to report any approach - however innocent it may be - to their line manager. That is absolutely drummed into them.
It doesn't matter if somebody asks you what you think of the pitch, what you think of the weather, whether you want to bat first, what the team will be... any approach whatsoever should be reported. Every international cricketer knows that.
In the last couple of days Shane Watson and Brad Haddin of Australia have explained they were approached by somebody and they reported it to their team manager, Steve Bernard. All of the Pakistan players will be aware that they should do the same.
Amir has not appeared from nowhere. He has played quite a number of matches now and before his very first game he will have been made fully aware of what he should do in that situation.
At the moment these are just allegations and it's sad that he has been caught up in them. But if he is found guilty of any wrongdoing then he must face the consequences.
In these circumstances, if he found guilty, then I like the suggestion of a suspended life sentence. If he steps out of line again he's out.
Don't blame the ICC for not acting straight away over this issue because they're not in a situation to do anything.
There are two aspects to this investigation; the criminal law handled by the Metropolitan Police and the sporting law, handled by the governing body. The governing body can't do anything until the police have completed their inquiries.
The Metropolitan Police are a fine organisation and will be methodical in their approach. I fully expect this to take a long time and a lot more will probably come out.
The ICC have put lots of measures in place with the anti-corruption unit, but eventually this all comes back to the home boards to deal with.
Have the home boards done enough? I don't think they have.
There are people who are playing or are involved at the highest level of the game who have been cited for similar allegations to those facing Pakistan right now. In my view, that suggests the home boards haven't done enough.
There has always been rumour and innuendo about cricket, as in all sports.
That's one of the reasons why the IPL leaves me cold. The commissioner of that tournament has been suspended over alleged financial irregularities and having spoken to players and people involved in the IPL, there is a lot of rumour about it.
But 't this is not a problem for cricket alone. Paul Condon, the outgoing head of the ICC's anti-corruption unit, has said there have been several sports targeted by unscrupulous gambling syndicates.
Snooker has had troubles recently, while golf and tennis have also been mentioned. Just last year, players from the football team I support, Accrington Stanley, were suspended after being accused of betting on their own team to lose.
Let's not be too naïve about this, there will always be an element of this in every sport, and I'm sure more could come out about the Pakistan situation in the weeks and months ahead.
I don't think for a minute that Pakistan have thrown any game, but there appears to be quite damning evidence that they've played about.
I look forward to the conclusion of the investigations because every wrong-doer that you catch is a deterrent to the rest of the players.
A rare Tweet
I hate those newspaper columns that England cricketers write, which are always vetted by the ECB.
"Me and Billy had a pizza and then we went to bed. Then we woke up and walked to the ground...."
Great stuff lads. Why don't you tell us what you really think?
That's why I enjoyed Kevin Pietersen's Twitter page on Tuesday when he expressed his anger at being left out of England's one-day squads. I'd rather hear his real emotions than the bland statement that came out through the ECB afterwards ("I fully understand the reasons blah, blah, blah...")
I don't agree with the bad language he used, but otherwise that was just what I want to hear from cricketers. He'll get his wrists slapped, but I say good on him.
The ECB will have been upset because they like to control when the announcement is put out to the media. They'll probably be more upset about that than about what he actually said.
More importantly, I want to know why they're sending him to play for a team that's second bottom of Division Two. Is that really the best way to prepare for the Ashes?
In my opinion, the best thing for him would be to clear off with his family for a while. He looks like a troubled lad, so why not send him for some time away with his new baby and come back with a smile on his face.
He'd need to maintain his fitness levels, but I think a break from cricket would benefit him a lot more more than playing for Surrey.
I'm off to do a Q&A session up at Cockermouth Cricket Club on Wednesday to help them out after all the trouble they've had with flooding. It's a nice part of the world and I hope the town is getting back to normal.
And I'm pleased to report that tickets for 'The World According To Bumble' theatre tour are selling well.
Peter Hayter from the Mail on Sunday will be joining me on stage and the audience will be able to ask my opinions on cricket and more. Expect plenty of ranting!
I'm doing 22 nights across the country starting in Leamington Spa on October 26 and finishing in Morecambe on November 19. Click here for ticket details.