Players Cleared in Australian Open Match Fixing Probe
The probe was launched after online bookmaker Pinnacle Sports reported unusual betting activity in the mixed-doubles market. Upon noticing a large amount of wagers rolling in on some fairly obscure, and long-odds pairs Pinnacle halted wagering and reported its findings to the Tennis Integrity Unit.
Pinnacle was the only sportsbook to report unusual activity on the match and that didn’t sit well with other bookmakers who accused the company of fishing for free publicity. While that’s a definite possibility, it’s also possible that Pinnacle acted out of an abundance of caution due to a highly publicized Buzzfeed report on match fixing in professional tennis, which was published right around that same time.
In its report, the Tennis Integrity Unit found no wrongdoing by either of the pairs in the match in question including Lukasz Kubot and Andrea Hlavackova; and David Marrero and Lara Arruabarrena.
Despite its clear vindication of the players, the Tennis Integrity Unit report was extremely short on details. In an interview with the Wall Street Journal, Tennis Integrity Unit spokesman Mark Harrison described the findings, and the lack of detail as follows:
While details of the investigation will remain confidential, no evidence of corrupt activity has been identified and no further action will be taken against any player involved in the match. TIU investigations not only root out corrupt practices, but also support players who are the subject of unproven speculation.
The players involved in the contested matches have been cleared of any wrongdoing; were never suspended from match play; and are free to compete in sanctioned events.