Tennis authorities launch anti-corruption review amid match-fixing claims
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Tennis authorities launch anti-corruption review amid match-fixing claims

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Tennis governing bodies have fired the starting gun on an independent review into their anti-corruption operations, amid claims of high-level match-fixing in the sport.

The chairs and executives of the Association of Tennis Professional (ATP), Women’s Tennis Association (WTA) and International Tennis Federation (WTA), as well as the Grand Slam Board, have signed off the review which will report on the “appropriateness and effectiveness” of the Tennis Anti-Corruption Program, and make recommendations for change.

Adam Lewis QC will head up the Independent Review Panel (IRP) which will look at the processes, procedures and resources of the Tennis Integrity Unit (TIU).

It will investigate how the TIU can become more transparent without compromising confidentiality, the need for additional TIU resources, the possibility of structural or governance changes to “enhance the independence” of the TIU and ways to extend the scope of the Tennis Integrity Education Program.

“Tennis remains one of the leaders of integrity. We have a zero-tolerance approach to all aspects of corruption and all of us are absolutely committed to rooting out corruption whatever it takes,” said a statement made by the tennis authorities.

“Given the seriousness of the issue, we call on all governments worldwide to make match-fixing a criminal offence, resourced by national crime fighting agencies working in cooperation with sports integrity boards and other relevant stakeholders.”

Last week, a BBC news report alleged that 16 players who had been in the world top-50 in the past decade had aroused suspicion in terms of match-fixing but were allowed to continue competing. ATP chair Chris Kermode batted away suggestions that match-fixing had been covered up by the authorities.

Lewis will select two assistants to make up the IRP, which will deliver findings to the governing bodies of tennis and will publish an interim report.

The joint statement said the review will build on the 2008 Environmental Report “that saw tennis become one of the first major sports to establish its own dedicated anti-corruption unit”.

The review was signed off by Kermode, WTA chief executive Steve Simon, ITF president David Haggerty and Tennis Integrity Board and Wimbledon chair Philip Brook. Stephen Healy, Jean Gachassin and Katrina Adams – chairs of the Australian Open, Roland Garros and the US Open respectively – also provided their signatures.

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Tennis governing bodies have fired the starting gun on an independent review into their anti-corruption operations, amid claims of high-level match-fixing in the sport.
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