Australian Open 2016: Andy Murray says appointing betting partner “hypocritical”

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA – JANUARY 19: Andy Murray of Great Britain plays a backhand in his first round match against Alexander Zverev of Germany during day two of the 2016 Australian Open at Melbourne Park on January 19, 2016 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Mark Kolbe/Getty Images) Photo: Mark KolbeWorld No.2 Andy Murray has labelled the decision to appoint a betting partner at a grand slam as “hypocritical”.

The Australian Open became the first grand slam to have a betting agency (William Hill) sponsor the tournament, but Murray is opposed to the historic partnership.

“Yeah, I’m not really pro that, I don’t think,” the Scot said. “I think it’s a little bit hypocritical, really. You know, because I don’t believe the players are allowed to be sponsored by betting companies but then the tournaments are. I don’t really understand how it all works. I think it’s a bit strange.”

Murray’s comments came as Australian rising star Thanasi Kokkinakis opened up about being propositioned on Facebook to fix a match.

Kokkinakis said he believes corruption exists in all sports, but reports by the European Sports Security Association indicates that tennis is open to match-fixing more than any other sport.

In the first nine months of 2015, there were 49 suspicious-activity alerts raised, with only 16 alerts raised throughout the same period for all other sports according the ESSA reports.

“I didn’t know that so many matches had been flagged up with the betting companies,” Murray said. “I wasn’t aware of that. I knew that there had been some, but not as many as there were.”

While Kokkinakis didn’t want to delve into the detail of his experience, he revealed how he was approached on social media.

“Match-fixing affects every sport,” Kokkinakis said. “Luckily in tennis we have a great program in place, we have the tennis integrity unit and you just report it to them and they get it all sorted. It happened [to me] on Facebook a while ago.

“That’s why tennis is good, it’s well organised. We have the tennis integrity unit and you report it to them and they deal with it and it’s all sorted and cleaned up. Not really [shocked]. I know it happens in every sport. I’m ready for that sort of stuff. People do it. You just leave the professionals to deal with it.”

While names haven’t been released in the BBC and Buzzfeed reports, several players have since spoken out over approaches that were made to them which shows how prevalent the issue is in the sport.

World No.1 Novak Djokovic had been offered more than $200,000 to throw a match in St Petersburg in 2006, and while Kokkinakis wasn’t offered anywhere near those figures, he insists he never considered the approach.

“I have [received offers], not face-to-face, but on social media,” Kokkinakis told Fairfax Media.

“You read some stuff on your Facebook page, just randoms from nowhere, saying, ‘I’ll pay you this much money to tank the game’, but you try to block it off … get rid of that stuff and focus on what you need to do ahead. You don’t really take it seriously, there’s all these randoms around the place.”

The digital world has made players far more accessible to the public than they once were.

While not every player is being approached, a lot have to deal with a barrage of abuse on social media from members of the public who have lost money on the matches they play.

“I cop abuse on Twitter for every single match I lose, sometimes even matches I win,” Australian John Millman said.

“It’s not even the match-fixing. The ATP has done a good job setting up this tennis integrity unit and any problems we go through – that’s how I deal with it … I haven’t had the approach, but any Twitter abuse or stuff like that, they handle it.”

Roger Federer wanted concrete information before speculating over concerns of grand slam champions being involved, but said he had no sympathy for those who might be found guilty of match-fixing.

“I would like to hear the name. I would love to hear names,” Federer said.

“Then at least it’s concrete stuff and you can actually debate about it. Was it the player? Was it the support team? Who was it? Was it before? Was it a doubles player, a singles player? Which slam? It’s so all over the place. It’s nonsense to answer something that is pure speculation.

“Like I said, it’s super serious and it’s super important to maintain the integrity of our sport. So how high up does it go? The higher it goes, the more surprised I would be, no doubt about it. Not about people being approached, but just people doing it in general. I just think there’s no place at all for these kind of behaviours and things in our sport. I have no sympathy for those people.”

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on 老域名购买.

Comments are closed.