London: Spinner Danish Kaneria was on Friday named in court as being involved in a spot-fixing scam, dealing yet another blow to Pakistan’s cricketing image already mired by the sensational jail terms to former captain Salman Butt and two of his teammates for corruption last year.

Prosecutors in the case of former Essex bowler Mervyn Westfield, who has pleaded guilty to spot-fixing and faces sentencing, said the player had been lured into fixing after an approach by Kaneria.

The court heard that Kaneria told Westfield he would be paid to concede a certain number of runs in a particular over during the matches.

Prosecutor Nigel Peters QC said the deal emerged after another Essex player, Tony Palladino, showed Westfield “the most money he had ever seen”.

Kaneria was arrested in connection with the case in 2010 but later released without charge.

Westfield admitted receiving £6,000 to bowl so that 12 runs would be scored in the first over of a 40-over match between Durham and Essex in September 2009, although in fact only 10 were scored.

Pakistan Cricket Board had not selected Kaneria in the national team ever since he was arrested in the case and had told the player that he would be considered for selection only after clearance from its Ethics Commission.

This case took place against the backdrop of Pakistan players Salman Butt, Mohammad Asif and Mohammad Aamer being jailed in Britain last year for their role in a separate spot-fixing scandal in a Test match against England.

The 31-year-old Kaneria has taken 261 wickets in 61 Tests at an average of 34.79. He has 15 five-wicket hauls and two ten-wicket hauls, with a best bowling figure of seven for 77. His best match figure remains 12/94.     

In the one-dayers, Kaneria has taken 15 wickets from 18 matches with three for 31 being his best.

He made his Test debut against England in Faisalabad in 2000 and one-day debut against Zimbabwe at Sharjah a year later.

His last Test was against England at Nottingham in 2010 and the last ODI was against Zimbabwe at Kingston in 2007.

Kaneria becomes the fourth Pakistani cricketer to be implicated in spot fixing scandals.

In November last year, a London Court handed out jail sentences to three former Pakistan cricketers – captain Salman Butt, Mohammad Asif and Mohammad Aamir - and a cricket agent named Mazhar Majeed for bringing disrepute to the sport by involving in corruption, including spot-fixing.

Butt was jailed for 30 months, Asif for one year and Aamir six months. Majeed was given a jail term of two years and eight months. Aamir, however, has now been freed after serving half his term because of good behaviour.

The trio had been charged with conspiracy to cheat and conspiracy to accept corrupt payments during a Test match against England at Lord's in August 2010.

(Agencies)