Cricketer loses appeal after spot-fixing at Durham

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A CRICKETER has lost his appeal against a corruption conviction.

Former Essex bowler Mervyn Westfield became the first county player in England to be prosecuted for spot-fixing, in a Pro40 match against Durham at the Riverside, Chester-le-Street.

He was paid £6,000 to bowl so that a specific number of runs would be chalked up in the first over of the 2009 fixture.

The 24-year-old, from Chelmsford, was jailed for four months at the Old Bailey in February, and has since been released.

Yesterday his case was at London’s Court of Appeal, alongside a separate cricket spot-fixing conviction, of sports agent Mazhar Majeed, 36, from Croydon.

However, their claims that the prosecutions were legally flawed were both rejected.

Lord Chief Justice Lord Judge said: “The prizes for successful gambling can be very great, and the scope for corruption is therefore considerable.

“For the health, indeed the survival, of the game as a truly competitive sport, it must be eradicated.”