Cricket Murder In Jamaica
The sudden and tragic death (murder by manual strangulation of the neck) of Bob Woolmer, 58 years, on the 12th floor of the Pegasus Hotel, Kingston, Jamaica should be a wake up call to the ICC and all sporting organizations. With the professionalisation of most sports: horse racing, cricket, rugby, soccer, etc. with big salaries and heavy gambling, corruption including murder has become a social norm.
Huge sums of money are lost or won on inside information, and players who are earning US $100,000 – $10 million per year, are easily bought. Millions of dollars change hands. In recent years cricket, which was considered a gentleman’s game, played by gentlemen, is now a gentlemen’s game played by professional gamblers, most of whom could not earn a living in civvy street. Many, after their playing days are done, continue in sports as announcers, sportswriters, coaches and other jobs, at a much reduced income. It is a case of jobs for the boys.
Woolmer was well placed to know what was going on in the sporting world, and who was receiving payoffs, and not performing to their capabilities. He was also the coach of the South African cricket team in the 1990s, when the South African captain, Hansie Kronje was found guilty of match fixing with gambling connections in India, and barred for life from the sport.
The ICC under Malcolm Speede must share responsibility in the strangulation of Woolmer.
In 2006 Bob Hair, white Australian international cricket umpire called against the Pakistan team on their tour of England for ball tampering. The Pakistani Captain kept his team off the field of play and Hair awarded the match to England . Millions of dollars in the gambling world were lost.
Instead of the ICC supporting Hair, he was removed as an international umpire. This support action to remove Hair was led by India and Pakistan, and supported by the WICB, including their media. It was an opportunity for international cricket to make a stand against corruption and gambling, but like Judas, they took the 12 pieces of silver, and sacrificed Hair to the gamblers.
I am pleased to see the Assistant Commissioner of the Jamaica Police is a former member of the Metropolitan Police of London, and that gives me confidence that he will bring in the overseas resources to ensure that the murderers, plural because it would have taken more than 1 man to subdue and strangle Woolmer who was found in his room and pronounced dead at the hospital, and the body taken to the hospital where only a medical officer can pronounce death. It is reported that the Pakistan Cricket Team has been finger printed and will be going to Montego Bay for 2 days of rest before returning to India . My advice is that the whole team should remain in Jamaica under the jurisdiction of the Jamaica Court .
This should be read in conjunction with the fact that Jamaica is in itself a most violent island, with 2.5 million population, and 1,650 reported murders per year. This is one of the highest murder rates in the world.
It was said that Bob Woolmer was found at 11 a.m. in his room by a cleaner, but it has not been mentioned who last saw him alive and in normal circumstances. Security was extremely heavy, and only a person authorized to be in that area, and known to Woolmer, would have been able to enter his room.
I look forward to the suspects being charged and arrested, and that there be no cover-ups to be politically correct, as is the new nom-de-plume for wrong doing.
Richard Goddard, Barbados