Sun, Oct 30, 1:45pm by Staff Writer
The latest European Sports Security Association (ESSA) findings have been released and once again it’s not good news for tennis. For the third consecutive quarter this year, the racquet sport received more suspicious betting alerts than any other sport.
According to the organisation’s quarterly figures, the latest quarter’s findings in fact reveal that the alerts totalled more than all the other sports combined.
Tennis accounted for 31 of the 37 alerts received in the third quarter, or 84 percent of all alerts. Soccer was second, with three alerts.
This follows ESSA’s findings in the first two quarters of 2016, where tennis also accounted for the majority of suspicious betting activity that was flagged by the Association.
It hasn’t been a good year for tennis, in quarter one, the sport accounted for 81% of suspicious activity and in quarter two it was one percent down on the latest findings, at 83%. Those figures are from ESSA’s sports betting integrity stats.
A suspicious betting pattern can be an indication of match fixing but can also occur for other reasons, such inside knowledge by bettors or existing injuries to players.
The Tennis Integrity Unit (TIU), previously released its own figures, saying it received an even larger total of 96 suspicious betting alerts in the third quarter. The TIU has sharing agreements with international betting companies.
Neither organisation specifically defined the criteria it uses to decide if an alert is suspicious which means that definitions can vary among betting companies.
The European Sports Security Association represents most of Europe’s largest betting companies.
The sport was hit by match-fixing allegations before this year’s Australian Open and underwent an independent review of its anti-corruption procedures.
The independent review panel (IRP) announced in February that it will take at least a year to investigate allegations of corruption in tennis and the effectiveness of existing procedures and the sport’s governing bodies.
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