KEIR RADNEDGE REPORTS: All major sports are at extra risk of matchfixing because of football’s success in raising its guard at top level.
That cautionary tale was delivered at a London conference by Oscar Brodkin of international betting monitor Sportradar*.
Brodkin said: “There is almost no matchfixing in the top tier of [football]. It’s basically decreased to zero. The federations are doing such a good job of stamping it out in the top tier that it has had to move to the lower tiers which are less policed.
“That’s what we’re seeing and it’s being pushed out to other sports, everywhere. Every sport being offered for betting is being spoiled with matchfixing from people who can’t fix games in the top leagues.
“This seems to be increasing because of the hole left by the decrease in matchfixing in the top tier. There’s no outlet for organised crime to make money from the top tier so they go elsewhere: it makes sense.”
Europe and Asia was ‘home’ to the highest number of matchfixers, according to Brodkin, Sportrada’s director of intelligence and investigation services.
He added: “In Asia there is a massive amount of matchfixers. It’s said that real matchfixing on the internet was born in Singapore and Malaysia by the godfathers of fixers and other people have copied them – anywhere in Asia where the is a prevalence of organised crime and players are paid poorly.
“Matchfixers are extremely opportunistic.”
* Tackling Match Fixing, staged by Rex Sport and Inside World Football at the Chelsea Harbour Hotel, West London.