Akela and Afroz Alam Sahil, BeyondHeadlines
New Delhi: Bookies and punters, it seems, have decided who is going to play the crucial semifinal match of the ICC World Cup 2011 between India and Pakistan. Betting has already begun for the final match, which if bookies are to be believed, will be played between India and Sri Lanka.
Bookies have even declared rates of the final match. “By chance if Pakistan and Sri Lanka plays the final match, the rate of both teams will be equal as 95 paisa,” said a Delhi-based bookie to BeyondHeadlines (BH).
In fact, informed sources told the BH that a meeting of bookies was held in Delhi’s Irani Hotel. Initial rate for India and Sri Lanka to reach final were put to 70 paisa and Rs 1.25. Their rate has now gone up to Rs 3. “It is 99 percent sure that India and Sri Lanka will play the final match of the World Cup 2011,” said a punter to the BH.
The rate for the semifinal match, to be played between India and Pakistan on March 30 in Mohali, is 60 paisa for India and Rs 1.50 for Pakistan. According to reports, Rs 5,000 crore are on stake on this one match alone.
Fearing match-fixing, Pakistani Interior Minister Rehman Malik told reporters: “I have warned them (players) that there should be no match-fixing. I am keeping a close watch. If any such thing happens, we are going to take action.” He further added, “It’s necessary to monitor the players because we cannot take any chance after the ICC banned Salman Butt, Mohammad Asif and Mohammad Aamer for spot fixing. We keep an eye on people who meet our players, with whom they talk to on telephone….”
Interestingly, bookies from India, Pakistan, England and Australia are accepting more than Rs 25,000 crores betting on the final match.
Man of the Tournament
Punters have also decided on the man of the tournament. Yuvraj Singh is front runner with Shahid Afridi coming second. Yuvraj’s rate is Rs 3 and Afridi’s Rs 4. Master blaster Sachin Tendulkar is on the third position with Rs 4.5. The rate of Lasith Malinga of Sri Lanka is Rs 6 and Kumar Sangkara is Rs 7.5.
(Akela is working with MID DAY as Sr. Correspondent)