Brussels, 15 April: During the first quarter of 2016, 11 instances of suspicious betting patterns were reported to the relevant authorities by sports betting integrity body ESSA, which represents many of the largest regulated international sports betting operators. Of those 11 cases, 9 were identified in tennis, with one each in basketball and football. From a geographical perspective, there were five cases identified in Asia, three in Europe, two in Africa and one in South America.
The release of the Q1 2016 integrity report, which also includes articles on sports governance and betting integrity issues by the Council of Europe and Sports Integrity Initiative, coincides with the annual EU sports integrity day, endorsed through social media as #EUSportIntegrityDay. The integrity campaign, which is open to everyone who is committed to fighting match-fixing, is designed to:
- raise awareness amongst stakeholders and everyone who loves sport;
- reinforce the key education messages about sports betting integrity;
- showcase good practice in the fight against match-fixing; and
- demonstrate a public commitment to preventing match-fixing from harming sport.
#EUSportIntegrityDay is promoted by EU Athletes, a federation of European players associations and athlete unions, which manages a player education programme established in 2010 with the regulated betting sector, including ESSA. The programme recently received a boost in funding from the European Commission ensuring that it continues for a further two years until the end of 2017.
The ESSA Q1 2016 betting integrity report and previous reports can be accessed here.