Alviro Petersen swears that he has never fixed or tried to fix a match, and says he will take the charges against him in a tribunal.
The former Proteas batsman was charged by CSA on Saturday with several breaches of its Anti-Corruption Code.
Petersen, a regular columnist for SAcricketmag.com, denies his involvement in the scandal, saying: ‘I want to ensure the public that I’ve never fixed a match, contrived or agreed to fix a match.’
‘I have never taken money or a bribe to fix a match, and this is an accepted fact, and I challenge anyone to make a statement to the contrary.’
Petersen, who has described himself as the whistle-blower in the recent Ram Slam investigation, does acknowledge that he ‘played along’ with some of those involved to mask the fact there was an investigation.
He also says he was offered a plea bargain by CSA, but that the sanctions were disproportionate. He will now take the case to a tribunal.
An official statement was released on behalf of him by his lawyer, Robin Twaddle:
The charges relate to events that took place between the time of Alviro’s reporting his knowledge of the corruption scandal to the anti-corruption unit and Gulam Bodi being charged by CSA.
Alviro acknowledges and admits that he played along with other persons involved in the scandal so as not to alert them to the fact that an investigation was underway.
When Alviro first learnt at the end of July 2016 that charges were contemplated against him, he was surprised because he felt that he had cooperated with the investigative team as fully as he was required to.
Alviro was in constant contact with the investigative team from the time he reported his knowledge of the scandal until Bodi was charged and he gave information that he had received of actual plans to influence matches to the investigative unit.
The charges follow a lengthy negotiating period between Alviro and Cricket South Africa in which Alviro was offered a plea bargain. Whilst Alviro is willing to take responsibility for his actions over this period, although they were taken in good faith under the circumstances at the time, he could not reach agreement with CSA because he believes that the sanctions which would have been imposed were disproportionate to Alviro’s actions and do not take sufficient cognizance of the defenses and mitigating circumstances put forward by Alviro.
The charges brought by CSA are heavy-handed. In particular, the charges relating to contriving to fix or otherwise improperly influence, or being a party to a scheme in which attempts would be made to fix or otherwise improperly influence, a match or matches in the 2015 T20 Challenge Series, and seeking to accept, accepting or agreeing to accept a bribe or reward to fix or contrive to fix or influence improperly a match or matches in the 2015 T20 Challenge Series, are without merit.
Alviro has never fixed a match, agreed to fix a match, or contrived to fix a match, and he has never sought, accepted, agreed to accept, or received any bribe or other reward to fix or contrive to fix a match, to ensure for betting or other corrupt purposes the occurrence of a particular incident in a match or, for that matter, for any other unethical purpose.
Furthermore, Alviro appears to have been singled out by CSA, as he is aware of five players, not including Bodi, who did receive money to fix matches, one of whom has not been charged by CSA.
Alviro welcomes the charges because he is confident that the tribunal will deal with the matter fairly and appropriately and that justice will prevail. The tribunal proceedings will end speculation and allow all the facts regarding the match fixing scandal to come into the public domain.