It was a match which took the cricketing world by surprise. The high-voltage India-Pakistan game during the '99 World Cup in England, played in the backdrop of the Kargil war, had the nation riveted. It was the fourth game in the Super Six stage. On June 6, at Old Trafford in Manchester, India, batting first, managed to score a modest 227 runs. The buzz was that Wasim Akram's men would easily win. But the Pakistan batting collapsed in a heap, scoring just 180 runs in 45.3 overs and India won rather too easily by 47 runs.
That particular match is now the subject of an ongoing inquiry by the Anti-Corruption and Security Unit (ACU) of world cricket's governing body, the International Cricket Council (ICC). The roles of the two rival captains, Wasim Akram and Mohammed Azharuddin, are under scrutiny. A host of other Pakistani players—including Saleem Malik—are being examined for "under-performance" by the ACU. In its confidential correspondence with the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB), the ACU has suggested that the match was 'fixed' by Delhi-based punter, Ratan Mehta. ACU chief Sir Paul Condon, who sent "classified" letters to the PCB early last year, pointedly refers to the role of Mehta in "arranging the under-performance" of the Pakistani cricketers. In the match under question, Akram was out after scoring 12 runs while Malik was leg before wicket, scoring just 6 runs. Though India never made it to the semi-finals, the 'convincing win' was met with much celebration back home in India.