The Tennis Integrity Unit (TIU) and the International Association for Betting Integrity (IBIA) exchanged correspondence among themselves outlining the credibility issues facing both parties during the ongoing Coronavirus pandemic.
In particular, the letters illustrate the need for all stakeholders to practise improved due diligence in promoting betting markets and also draw attention to mitigating steps that the two bodies have placed in place to protect the sport and the members of IBIA.
The TIU and IBIA, which have worked constructively together for many years, have also agreed to improve their relationship in the coming months with enhanced sharing of knowledge and advice.
Jennie Price, Chairman of the Tennis Integrity Supervisory Board, wrote to IBIA CEO Khalid Ali, noting: “In the spirit of our shared interest in maintaining the integrity of the sport, I am formally requesting that in the coming months you and your members exercise enhanced due diligence in ensuring the integrity of the tennis events offered for betting.
“When deciding whether to offer betting on matches or competitions, we urge great caution in offering betting on those with no umpires and/or whose integrity risk management plans cannot be ascertained. We would include events that are promoted as purely ‘Exhibition’ matches (i.e. not intended to be competitive events) in the same risk category at this time.
“I acknowledge that there is a supply chain involved in any betting market and I will therefore be communicating directly with the leading data companies involved in the tennis markets urging them to exercise increased due diligence, and will be providing them with a copy of this letter.”
Ali wrote in response:
“The points that you have made, particularly regarding recent tennis events outside of the Tennis Anti-Corruption Program (TACP) and the prospect of increased activity from corrupters when the professional tour reopens, will be communicated to IBIA members. Please let me assure you that IBIA and its members are aware of your concerns around these events and, as with the markets generated for competitions across all sports in the current environment, they are receiving heightened levels of vigilance.
“We would expect and encourage any responsible operators outside of IBIA to also be taking that approach. For IBIA’s part, the ongoing engagement and information sharing gateways established with the TIU are adding to our monitoring capabilities for tennis and we will be delighted to explore enhanced cooperation and alignment during this challenging time.”