Sussex players and coaching staff have revealed their shock and anger at allegations two of their former team-mates helped fix matches.
Skipper Ed Joyce and coach Mark Robinson said the charges against Lou Vincent and Naved Arif would be an “insult to them and the game” if proved.
Vincent and Arif are facing 20 offences of helping to fix limited overs matches during the 2011 season following an ECB investigation.
The news came as a complete shock to the players who met on Sunday and decided they wanted to publicly state their disgust at the possibility that one of their former team-mates had been involved in any corrupt activity.
The club held a press conference on the second day of their County Championship match against Middlesex at Merchant Taylors’ School in which chairman Jim May described the reaction of the players to the news May said: “Our club is founded on strong values and our playing success reflects our special ethos. We were therefore shocked to learn of allegations of match-fixing in 2011 and in view of the sensitivity and the complexity of the situation we have been unable to make public comment until now.
“I want our supporters to know that our playing and coaching staff are extremely shocked and angry about the allegations that any former colleagues may have acted in a corrupt way while wearing the Sussex shirt.
“They see it as an insult to them and the game. Our players take a great personal pride in performing to the highest level when they play for Sussex.”
May added that Sussex had done everything in their power to aid the ECB investigation into the CB40 match against Kent at Hove in August 2011 and the Twenty20 quarter-final against Lancashire in the same month.
The Sussex chairman also claimed the work the club has done in conjunction with the ECB since 2011 to help lessen the chances of match-fixing are working.
May added: “I can confirm that Sussex has worked very closely and cooperated with both the ICC and ECB anti-corruption units to help establish the facts of what occurred in the two limited-overs matches during 2011.
“We are totally supportive of any action taken by the ECB and other authorities to tackle corruption. The question of corruption in cricket has received a higher profile in recent years and I believe that there is now a far greater awareness of this issue.
“We believe that the education available to players and staff and the controls that have been put in place by the ECB and the Professional Cricketers’ Association puts our game in a good position as we move forward.
“We are all conscious of the constant need to be vigilant and of the processes in place to report any suspicion.”