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Gambling and match-fixing under the spotlight

14 February 2012

ICC Chief Executive, Haroon Lorgat, joins FIFA Head of Security, Chris Eaton, at Global Sports Forum Barcelona 2012

Read the press release

Is gambling in sport good for business?  Will 2012 be another year of headline convictions and corruption in a major competition? Is betting an integral part of commercial success, or a risk to the competitive integrity of the sport industry? What’s next for gambling in sport?

These questions and many more will be debated at the Global Sports Forum Barcelona 2012 (GSFB), 7 – 9 March, as ICC Chief Executive, Haroon Lorgat, joins FIFA Head of Security, Chris Eaton, and Norbert Teufelberger, Co-CEO of online gambling company Bwin.Party Digital Entertainment pls for a panel discussion on “Gambling in sport.”

Eaton, who recently estimated that €300billion – €500billion is gambled on sport across the globe every year, has been involved in international criminal investigations for 40 years.  He joins the panel to discuss his view that as many as 70% of bets placed on sport fixtures go through unregulated and unregistered bookmakers, which is threatening the integrity of professional sport.

Lucien Boyer, President and CEO, Havas Sport & Entertainment and General Commissioner of the Global Sports Forum Barcelona, said:

“Gambling and corruption in sport remains a top priority for governing bodies across the globe, with three Pakistan cricketers convicted of spot-fixing and FIFA appointing Chris Eaton to a new Head of Security role in 2011.”

“In such a big year for sport, the GSFB 2012 is leading the way in tackling the issues that are of vital importance to the future of the sport industry and we are delighted to welcome five of the industry’s leading experts to the Forum.  We will be investigating how sport can manage legal gambling and eradicate the illegal bookmaking culture to protect the industry we all know and love.”

The most significant issue we need to tackle

International Cricket Council chief, Haroon Lorgat, recently highlighted the danger illegal gambling posts to sport, telling BBC Test Match special that spot fixing in cricket is “the most significant issue we need to tackle.”

“You cannot underestimate the value of protecting your integrity and the reputation of the game and if that was to go, we’ve got no game,” Lorgat told the BBC.  “I think we have shown we will not rest until we do tackle the issue.”

Lorgat, Eaton and Teufelberger will also be joined on the panel by John Abbott, Chairman of the INTERPOL steering group for the INTERPOL – FIFA initiative to reduce corruption in football, and Warren Phelops, gambling policy representative for the European Sponsorship Association (ESA).

One Response to Gambling and match-fixing under the spotlight

  1. Rodrigo Pacheco Carrillo dit :

    Betting and Gambling within sport is a danger that is growing in a similar fashion to that of the doping problems that rose to prominence in the 1980’s/90’s, and as such controlling methods should be implemented with severe sanctions.

    The IOC are defining Corruption in Sport into three different categories:

    - A pre determined outcome of the event/match/competition between two or more parties
    - The leaking of inside information to external sources who use that for their benefit in gambling purposes. Here, inside information could include things such as the injury status of a competitor or the air conditions within the hall.
    - To include betting on events that do not affect the overall outcome of the match/tournament i.e. loss of the first point or throwing a set for the reward of money.

    Corrupted athletes should be aware of the damage they are creating to the true spirit of sport. They should be educated of the dangers of social media in terms of alerting gamblers to any health problems they or other athletes may have that could impede their performance.

    Unfortunately these problems are not easy to be solved (I hope to be wrong), despite the big efforts that international organizations are willing to do, at the end, everyrhing starts with educational background and values of each person/athlete.

    It is great that at the GSFB 2012 this important « Gambling in Sport » issue will be presented; press, athletes and sports organizations should be aware that if this problem continues to rise it will be extremly dangerous for the sport at some point.

    Looking forward to attend the Forum in Barcelona !