Match-fixing lawyer hits Ethy Mbhalati's SJN testimony for six

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Ethy Mbhalati in action for the Titans.
Ethy Mbhalati in action for the Titans.
Ashley Vlotman/Gallo Images
  • Lawyer David Woodhouse said banned Titans paceman Ethy Mbhalati was dishonest in how he portrayed Tabacks's involvement in the 2015 Ram Slam T20 match-fixing investigations.
  • Mbhalati is currently serving a 10-year ban from all cricket-related activities because of his involvement in the scandal.
  • Woodhouse said Mbhalati mandated them to act on his behalf and minimise negative public exposure.

Lawyer David Woodhouse said banned Titans paceman Ethy Mbhalati misled the Cricket for Social Justice and Nation-building hearings by saying he wasn't correctly advised by their law firm.

Woodhouse works for Andersen, who at the time of the 2015/16 Ram Slam T20 match-fixing investigations, were known as Tabacks.

Woodhouse said Mhbalati, who was banned from all cricket-related activities for 10 years for his role in the match-fixing saga, was fully aware of the International Cricket Council code pertaining to match-fixing.

Woodhouse said he was fully mandated by Mbhalati to speak on his behalf when it came to dealing with match-fixing investigators Louis Cole and David Becker.

"From the start, he was aware of what the ICC code said. He was aware of what was said to him in the interview in March [2016] by Becker and Cole about the possible angles of charges," Woodhouse said.

"He was aware in June [2016] about an email that was sent to us about Becker with regards to what they were looking to charge Mr. Mbhalati with.

"When we received the draft sanction agreement, there were charges in that dealt with the ambit of what he faced and why he faced that.

"He signed the agreement and throughout the process, had mandated us to negotiate on his behalf as he did not want to go through the disciplinary tribunal process."

Woodhouse said their aim was to ensure that Mbhalati's case and the two other cricketers they were representing were kept out of the media limelight as much as possible.

"He was at all times, sensitive to negative publicity to a stage that he was worried about the aspects that were coming out of the media.

"Notwithstanding our conversations with Mr. Mbhalati, he was still in contact with Gulam Bodi.

'I cannot, for the life of me, understand...'

"We tried, by all means, to ensure that Mbhalati was minimally exposed to a negative outcome and it was in that context that we negotiated with Becker and Cole," said Woodhouse, adding:

From there we discussed and concluded Mbhalati's sanction agreement.

Woodhouse also firmly stated that he wasn't at any point approached to represent Lonwabo Tsotsobe, who is also serving a ban from all cricket-related activity because of his involvement in the match-fixing saga.

Woodhouse also stated that his interactions with Becker and the South African Cricketer's Association chief executive officer Andrew Breetzke were purely on a professional level.

"At no stage was I ever approached to act for Tsotsobe. He never contacted me, nor did we ever speak about Tsotsobe. I cannot, for the life of me, understand why he refers to Tabacks," Woodhouse said.

"I have never met Andrew Breetzke, nor have I met David Becker. The times I dealt with Becker was during Mbhalati's interview and I when I spoke to Becker over the phone," Woodhouse said.

"I couldn't tell you what Mr. Breetzke looks like and whether I had coffee with Mr. Becker, I can't recall, but at the Protea hotel, there were refreshments made available for everyone."

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