The coronavirus spiked tennis corruption during the first quarter.
A total of 38 alerts were filed on suspicious betting patterns in matches between January and March 22, 2020, the Tennis Integrity Unit reports.
None of the 38 match alerts involved Tour-level matches. Thirty one of the 38 match alerts were filed on matches played at the ITF $15K level.
The 38 match reports for the first quarter compares to 21 alerts for the same period in 2019, a year in which the fewest alerts were recorded since data was first published in 2015.
The TIU asserts the increase of reported suspicious matches in the first quarter of 2020 is a direct results of match-fixers intensifying efforts to fix matches realizing the season would be suspended by the coronavirus.
It’s “an indication that the entry levels of professional tennis were deliberately targeted by corruptors, as the sport moved towards suspension due to the Coronavirus pandemic,” the TIU said in a statement.
When the pro circuit resumes, the TIU aims to develop “an education and awareness campaign to inform and support players, officials and tournament staff.”
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