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Is it cricket?

The question

Following South African cricket captain Hanse Cronje's sacking after allegations of bribery, which sports remain icons of fair play and which have no chance?

Wherever there is a need for great personal effort, and even sacrifice of some sort, the likelihood of 'swinging a result' is far less likely. Rowing is a good example. With all the dedication needed, can you see a Cambridge oarsman holding back to allow Oxford to win; or even a Cornish gig crew holding back in favour of a long established rival?

Peter Cameron, 60, chief engineer, Truro

Current betting trends are a big incentive to cheat. If you bet the number of goals scored in a football match will be greater than the number the bookies say, you can recover 10 times your bet. If you lose you are out by 10 times. Using this system you do not need to rig a match to win or lose you only have to score goals and that can include the odd own goal!

Alastair D McMurtrie, 42, senior engineer, Glasgow

This does not, at first glance, appear to have a great deal to do with civil engineering. Then again, is wrestling not all a big fix (and are there not parallels with bidding for work in certain countries)? Bear- baiting is no longer acceptable, although perhaps not unlike trying to persuade contractors to pay for design work...

Simon Parsons, 30, tunnel design engineer, Hammersmith

The Indian whistleblowers showed a certainastonishment that such corruption could possibly happen in cricket, and that their own players were above this sort of thing. What everybody here really knows is that the players just wouldn't be stupid enough to get caught.

Wherever money is involved, however small, there are always people who will take full advantage of it and asthere is virtually no sport these days where money isn't an issue.

Andy Burton, 29, senior engineer, Hyderabad, India

We have a cartoon from my South African Boss showing the SS World Cricket steaming merrily towards an iceberg, labelled 'Cronje' on the small visible section above water. The only honest people left in the world are civil engineers, but with the HA and the like demanding 24 hour working seven days a week we have no spare time/weekends to play sport, let alone train to a reach a high level, so what do you expect from the rest!

Andrew Huetson, 33, civils estimator, Yorkshire

Cricket's reputation as a paragon of sporting virtue is largely a myth created by Victorian moralists. Its roots as a popular sport lie in an excuse for wealthy landowners and aristocrats to indulge their passion for gambling. Given the financial and public pressure on modern sportsmen and women, looking to them to give any sort of moral guide is even more foolish than it was in the past. Much better to observe and learn from the small kindnesses and principled stands you experience one-to-one.

Ken Hutchings, 32, self-employed consultant, Kent

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