Sportradar and ESSA team up to tackle tennis problem

Sportradar and ESSA team up to tackle tennis problem

Thursday, June 23, 2016 Posted by Andy McCarron
Sportradar's Alex Inglot cited media concern around tennis at all levels

Tennis is the main focus of a new co-operation between two of the gambling industry’s leading organisations for tackling match fixing. ESSA, the betting industry’s integrity body, and sports data and monitoring company Sportradar have joined forces to step up their efforts to root out betting corruption in tennis.

Sportradar’s Director of Communications and Public Affairs Alex Inglot told TotallyGaming.com that tennis was the obvious starting point for the collaboration. “Following recent months of media concern around tennis at all levels, it felt like a logical place for us to start our cooperation, especially in light of ESSA’s findings as set out in their Quarterly Reports

“We are sure that our collaboration will give a greater insight into what is happening in this sport worldwide and we look forward to working with the appropriate authorities in the follow up to our joint findings.”

The unique partnership will see the combined information from Sportradar’s Fraud Detection Service covering over 450 operators and ESSA members’ wealth of customer transactional data to provide a comprehensive market overview and alert system.

Mike O’Kane, Chairman of ESSA, welcomed the partnership: “The arrangement has clear benefits for both parties and represents a growing desire to complement each other’s efforts around match-fixing. By utilising the core strengths of both systems we have the potential to create an unparalleled level of data from which to detect betting related corruption. That can then be used to stamp out attacks on betting operators and protect sporting events; put simply, everyone wins.”

Inglot explained that 2014’s Council of Europe Macolin Convention is focused on greater collaboration and information sharing within countries and across borders in order to support the integrity of sporting competitions. “At Sportradar we wholeheartedly agree with the spirit of this Convention and want to do our utmost to bring that spirit into practical effect,” he said.

“There is no doubt that the efforts of sport, law enforcement, credible industry bodies and other invested stakeholders will bear more fruit if we can pool our resources, expertise and insights. We are already working closely with the Global Lotteries Monitoring System, supporting their efforts; we are also in regular dialogue with the IOC and have established a great working relationship with EUROPOL following the signing of our MoU with them.

“Only this week we were part of the Kick Crime Out of Sport’s Regional Seminar in The Hague, speaking to a number of countries about our thoughts on how to tackle this issue. So this is definitely not the start for Sportradar but is undoubtedly a significant milestone as we work with the likes of ESSA to shore up defences against matchfixing.”

However Inglot said it was too early to start looking at other sports in this way just yet. “We will focus on tennis initially and evaluate how the collaboration is working, where its strengths lie and how we can turn those strengths to other appropriate sports. It would be a touch premature to start guessing today if and where our collaboration can add value and insight.”

Totally Gaming Says: “Data sharing is a key tool when it comes to detecting match fixing and corruption so the fact that two the industry’s more established bodies are now working together should make it even easier to keep things clean. Tennis is the sport with the biggest perceived threat from fixing, so it makes sense to redouble efforts in monitoring the markets surrounding it.”

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