Monday, May 19, 2008

Tennis Gambling Investigation Report Released

A study of the integrity of professional tennis launched in the wake of last year's betting and match fixing scandals was completed, and the report was just released. This article includes both a nice summary of what precipitated the investigation, the findings and recommendations of the investigators, and of course, spin.
As it is a competition between two individuals answerable only to their own conscience, a tennis match is unfortunately subject to all manner of manipulations. In this era of corrupt NBA referees, rampant performance-enhancing drugs, and illegal inducements to collegiate athletes, tennis unfortunately has the dark cloud of match fixing to deal with.
Gambling and sports are intimately and irreversibly intertwined and tennis is no different. When you take a sport that can turn on a single point out of hundreds in a match, and that a point could be manipulated so that no one would ever know or prove it, one can easily see how there could be a huge problem with the very integrity of the sport.
The findings of this report will do little to quench worries about the possible damaging of our sport's integrity, and we can only hope that a comprehensive effort is made to not only implement the findings of the report, but also to educate players and vigorously prosecute violators. If not, and if a larger match-fixing scandal should ever surface, the sport will be forever, and perhaps irrevocably damaged.

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