Why do players fix matches? One might jibe that the most obvious answer is the insecurity of their place in the team and hence the fear of not earning the desired amount of money.
It is not only just cricket where a sportsman is afraid of being kicked out of the team but every sport; of course, this is how a sportsman lives unless he has a massive reputation. The young bloods in particular are the soft targets of bookies as they can be easily ingratiated to fix matches by luring them with money and at the same time imparting a fear into them.
Well, no doubt, every player’s prime priority is family and if it comes to family, he/ she might have to fix matches as there is no other way out and if you are caught fixing matches, you still are ruined. Hence, one can easily make out that education is needed no matter what profession you are after because in the life of a sportsman, it all about form and as soon as you lose it, it is the end.
Many cricket players struggle to find normal jobs when their life as a sportsman comes to an end, a scenario which promotes match fixing, particularly among young players. Thus, to prevent these players from falling into such traps, the scheme of MCC Universities has been widely promoted.
Here, you are developed into a sportsman by getting your degrees behind you at the same time, effectively ensuring that if you don’t enjoy a successful career as a sportsman, you can still find a good job and earn a living. Though the scheme hasn’t been as successful as it should have been, it still seems to be expanding, especially due to the way Cricket has gone about with the presence of bookies and the evils of match-fixing.
The MCCUs are based in Cambridge, Cardiff, Durham, Leeds, Loughborough and Oxford, and incorporate a total of thirteen institutions. They offer hundreds of courses for students of all academic levels, and some of the best coaching and facilities available anywhere in the country. MCC is committed to giving each MCCU £82,400 per-year to run their playing programmes and ensure they can provide top-class coaching structures and facilities to students.
In addition Loughborough receives an extra £15,000 towards its women’s programme - it is the only MCCU with a dedicated eleven-strong women’s squad, although England’s Holly Colvin has graduated as part of the Durham MCCU squad. Also, Andrew Strauss, Monty Panesar and Jamie Dalrymple were all a part of MCCUs. The former England captain Strauss said of his time at University: "At Durham University I went through the transition of being a recreational cricketer to one who had the ambition to play the game for a living."
Indeed, the scheme still needs a lot of promotion and expansion for more aspiring cricketers to join the MCCUs but one can easily say that this is a staircase that leads us far away from match-fixing and the other countries too should take inspiration from MCCUs’ success stories.
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