ed76911ac9a49210VgnVCM200000e66411acRCRDapproved/thenational/Articles/Migration/2008-Q2IPL tries to quash scope for fixingdd76911ac9a49210VgnVCM200000e66411ac____IPL tries to quash scope for fixingThe security around teams in the Indian Premier League is to be stepped up to prevent them from being targeted.The security around teams in the Indian Premier League is to be stepped up to prevent them from being targeted.<p>NEW DELHI // The security around teams in the Indian Premier League is to be stepped up to prevent them from being targeted by illegal betting syndicates that have blighted cricket in recent years.
With the IPL's group stages coming to an end, organisers are keen to ensure that there are no allegations of match-fixing and that the tournament's reputation is not tarnished. There is more concern around matches involving teams who have nothing left to play for in the group stages, either because they have already qualified for the semi-finals or have no chance of making it.</p>
<p>Players have been warned not to use their mobile phones once they are in the ground while only those with specially issued passes will be allowed outside dressing rooms. Players have been told not to mix with strangers. There is no evidence to suggest that there has been any kind of illegal betting activity involving players or teams in the IPL and organisers are keen to ensure that it remains that way.</p>
<p>An IPL spokesman said: "We know that the cricketing world is watching the IPL very closely and if there are any allegations of match fixing then that will reflect very badly on the tournament and Indian cricket in general. All the teams have been warned that they must be very careful about this issue particularly as we are reaching the end of the league stage."
According to a report, around US$6 billion (Dh23bn) has been bet so far and the figure is set to increase by the time the IPL ends on June 1. "Housewives, grocery shop owners and stock brokers have been placing their own bets on IPL matches," the report said.</p>
<p>The appetite for betting on cricket is so huge that some leading cricket officials are already calling for it to be legalised. Inderjit Singh Bindra, a former president the Indian board and a member of the IPL's governing council, revealed in a recent interview that he had been in contact with two leading bookmakers from the UK to discuss setting up legal operations in India.
Bindra said: "What's wrong with legalising the activity in a way that it's a win-win situation for the government, the punters and stakeholders. We want to build public opinion on this issue before we approach the government with any kind of a proposal or request."</p>