A recent cricket match between Pakistan and England saw a few Pakistani players wearing smartwatches during the game. The players were immediately warned by an ICC anti-corruption officer. Now, the International Cricket Council has released a statement cautioning cricketers to refrain from wearing smartwatches during matches to avoid allegations of match-fixing.
"Smartwatches in any way connected to a phone or Wi-Fi or in any way capable of receiving communications are not allowed and as such we will be reminding players that such devices must be surrendered along with their mobile devices on arrival at the ground on match days," said the ICC statement.
Pakistan’s bowler, Hasan Ali was not certain about which of his teammates were involved in the incident. Media outlets in Britain reported that two players wore smartwatches but did not mention if there was any sort of wrongdoing during the match.
"I didn't know who was wearing them but yes, the ICC anti-corruption officer came to speak to us and they told us this is not allowed," Hasan said.
During any cricket match, only the match officials are allowed to carry a few specific equipment to stay in contact with other officials as they work.
Match fixing is a serious concern for the ICC. Several players including Pakistan’s Salman Butt, Mohammad Asif, and Mohammad Amir were involved in match-fixing. Aussie players David Warner, Cameron Bancroft and former captain Steven Smith were also accused of cheating.