Serious attempt to uncover truth behind match-fixing saga but fails to highlight new information, observes Namrata Thakker.
Caught: crime. Corruption. cricket highlights the match-fixing scandal that shocked cricket fans in the 1990s and early 2000s.
The documentary is a serious attempt to uncover the truth behind the match-fixing saga, but does not shed any new information.
If you are a passionate cricket fan, this documentary will not be a captivating watch. Nor will it be entertaining.
But if you’re someone who doesn’t follow cricket, caught would be a good one off watch.
The documentary begins with former cricketer Manoj Prabhakar claiming he was bribed by a senior cricketer and then turned whistleblower for the match-fixing scandal circa 1997.
A full reveal is being conducted by a well-known magazine, but the story does little harm in the cricket world.
Later in the documentary, Prabhakar reveals that it was Indian ex-captain Kapil Dev who apparently tried to bribe him and sabotage India’s game against Pakistan.
We even see old footage of Kapil Dev chiding Prabhakar for his false accusations.
While Kapil Dev’s name has been erased from the scandal, Prabhakar faces punishment for having been in contact with bookmakers.
Next, the film explores the Hansie Cronje episode and how the then South African captain became involved in the 2000 scandal.
After his confession, the cricket world took the scandal more seriously.
Finally, with Cronje confirming that even Indian players were involved, the Board of Control for Cricket in India decides to investigate the matter.
The documentary then moves on to Mohammad Azharuddin and a bookmaker named MK Gupta.
How Azharuddin ends up getting caught up in the matchstick scandal and how it helps him confess to his crime is the rest of the story.
Throughout the documentary, veteran sportswriters and former CBI officials cover the scandal and how it unfolded.
The second half of the documentary focuses on Azharuddin and how he pleads his innocence after being banned from playing cricket for life by the BCCI.
At one point, the infamous Dawood Ibrahim is mentioned as leading the Dubai match scandal. but there’s no deep dive into that angle, which is disappointing.
Even the MK Gupta segment is rushed and we don’t get to see too many details about him.
It seems the makers of Caught: crime. Corruption. cricket only scratched the surface of the scandal.
Instead of making a documentary about information that has already been publicly available by cricket lovers over the years, director Supriya Sobti Gupta should have made a documentary series exploring the subject in depth, with the IPL also tackling the match-fixing bug .
caught. Crime. Corruption. cricket is currently streaming on Netflix.
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