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David East 'I have no sympathy for Westfield'

By Essex Chronicle  |  Posted: July 10, 2012

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ESSEX'S chief executive David East says he struggles to feel any sympathy towards Mervyn Westfield as he 'caused the club so much discomfort and for a certain period of time tarnished the reputation of the club'.

Last month Westfield was banned from playing cricket for five years by the ECB for his part in a spot-fixing scandal that rocked the county cricket world.

He was also recently released from prison after being sentenced to a four month term back in February for deliberately bowling poorly in a CB40 match against Durham back in 2009.

East said: "I can understand why it happened, certainly. Whether I can feel sympathetic towards him, I'd need to reflect on that a bit more.

"I think it's hugely disappointing that one of our own, that came through the system, who we nurtured, played for England under-19s – we had high hopes for Mervyn in his career and for it to be ended or at least be curtailed in this way is very sad."

The disciplinary panel also concluded that former Essex spinner Danish Kaneria acted as his corruptor.

East also said the whole experience had 'drained' the club.

But he has praised the role of former bowler Tony Palladino for reporting his suspicions who has since left and joined Derbyshire.

East said: "It was a very difficult decision for him, I'm sure, but it's something I think we should be proud of. Tony raised that issue and all credit to him. Post the ECB hearing it's become evident that the club wasn't at fault and nor were the players in terms of the way they reported it."

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