Match Fixing Incidents Till Date
Match fixing represents the dark side of any game, be it cricket, football or hockey. In the recent years there has been an increase in the number of match fixing incidents. However, they are not new to the world of sports. Match is said to be fixed when one or more players agree to influence the result of the game, rendering the very nature of sports void . Here we bring to you a sneak peak into several match fixing incidents that occurred in the world of sports.
- The first ever match fixing incident took place in the year 1919 when betters bribed a few members of the Chicago White Sox to flip the world series. This came to be known as the popular Black Sox Scandal. It was enumerated in the form of movie and book, Eight Men Out.
- In the year 1952, Frank Hogan, District Attorney accused basketball players of a college for match fixing from 4 New York schools including Long Island University, New York University, CCNY and Manhattan College.
- In the year 1978, gangsters contacted the popular Lucchese crime family in the New York. Of them Jimmy Burke and Henry Hill planned for a match fixing scheme with the important members of the Boston College basketball team.
- Pete Rose, a former baseball player accepted a ban from Major League Baseball for gambling on Cincinnati Reds games on August 24, 1989 while managing the baseball teams. In his autobiography, My Prison Without Bars, which was released in the year 2004, he wrote about the allegations and confirmed them too.
- Campus bookmaker Benny Silman along with several players from the Arizona State University planned a comprehensive match fixing scheme in the year 1994. Las Vegas bookmakers smelled something fishy over large bets being made against the Arizona State university, and thus helped in uncovering the entire plot.
- In February 1999, Malaysia based betting group was caught red handed while installing a remote-control device to disrupt the functioning of the floodlights at Charlton Athletic’s ground with the assistance of a corrupt officer. Further investigations revealed that the group has been responsible for floodlight failures at West Ham’s ground in the winters of November 1997. A month later, that is in December 1997 the gang damaged the light at Crystal Palace’s ground.
- In the year 2000, Delhi police trapped the conversation between the Cricket captain of the South African team, Hansie Cronje and a blacklisted bookie. The conversation revealed that the Hansie Cronje accepted money to loose matches. However, the South African government denied to allow its players to undergo any investigation being conducted by the Indian government. Cronjie accepted taking bribe for fixing matches in the court enquiry. He was banned from playing cricket. He also disclosed the name of other players including Ajay Jadeja and Mohammed Azharuddin (India) and Saleem Malik (Pakistan). Ajay Jadeja was banned from playing cricket for four years. As a kingpin, Hansie Cronjie exposed the dark side of gambling to the world. Two renowned South African Cricketers Nicky Boje and Herschelle Gibbs are wanted by the Delhi Police for their role in match fixing. In 1998, two Australian cricket players, Shane Warne and Mark Waugh were fined for disclosing important information about the weather to a bookie.
- In October 2000 the Italian Football Federation declared that it had found eight football players guilty of match fixing. Five were from Serie B side Pistoiese and the other three played for Serie A side Atlanta. The players were Girolamo Bizzarri, Gianluca Lillo, Daniele Amerini, Massimiliano Allegri (all Pistoiese) and Sebastiano Siviglia, Cristiano Doni and Giacomo Banhelli (all Atlanta).
- Thirty people including club officials, an official of the South African Football Association, a match commissioner and nineteen referees were arrested for fixing a match in June 2004 in South Africa.
- In 2004 summers, Betfair gave an evidence of race fixing to the London Police that led to the arrest of fifteen people including jockey Kieren Fallon on race fixing charges.
- In later part of 2004, match between Dinamo Tbilisi and Panionios in the 2004-2005 UEFA Cup was suspected to be fixed after bookmakers noted a high number of half time stakes for a 5-2 win for the Greek team which was initially trailing 0-1.
- Bundesliga Scandal 2005 – In January 2005, the German prosecutors and German Football Association started separate inquiries into charges that referee Robert Hoyzer fixed and bet on various matches including a German cup tie. Later, he admitted the allegations. There were reports of him being involved with the notorious Croat gambling gang. He involved other players and referees in the point shaving scheme. The first arrests in the Hoyzer probes were made in Berlin on January 28. Further investigations revealed that he was involved in fixing more matches than he admitted. This led to his arrest on February 12. A lifetime ban has been imposed on him by DFB. On March 10, police arrested another referee Dominik Marks for being involved in match fixing. Hoyzer was sentenced for two years and five months of imprison.
- In July 2005, Italian Seriw B champion Genoa was randomly placed in the last division. Hence, condemned to relegation in Serie C1. It was discovered that they bribed the opponent team members in the final match. Genoa secured promotion to Serie A after winning the match.
- Brazilian Football Match Scandal – A Brazilian magazine revealed in September 2005 that two football referees, Paulo Jose and Edilson Pereira de Carvalho accepted money to fix matches. Following this, sport authorities announced the replaying of eleven matches in the country’s top most competition, the Campeonato Brasileiro, that had been worked by Edilson. Both the referees faced a permanent ban and may face criminal charges as well.
- 2006 Serie A Scandal – It was in the year 2006 that the largest match fixing scandal was brought to light by the Italian police involving league champions Juventus and powerhouses Lazio, Fiorentina and AC Milan. Teams were doubted for choosing favourable referees and goalkeeper of Italian World Cup team, Gianluigi Buffon who was accused for staking money on football matches. Juventus were robbed of their titles in 2004-05 and 2005–06, all the four football clubs were denied entry in the European club competition in 2006-2007.
- 2007 NBA Referee Scandal – In July 2007, it was discovered that the National Basketball Association referee Tim Donaghy had staked money on ten to fifteen games including the matches refereed by him. The Federal Bureau of Investigation is probing the matter along with NBA.
- The Fix, 2008 – Book written by Declan Hill revealed that in 2006 World Cup, the group game played between Italy and Ghana, the round-of 16 game between Brazil and Ghana, and the Ukraine-Italy quarter-final were all fixed by the Asian betting groups to whom the final scores were already known. The German Football League (DFL) and German Football Federation (DFB) looked into the allegations made in a Der Spiege interview that Bundesliga games were fixed by William Bee Wah Lim.
- 2008- According to a report published on October 1, a Spanish judge who headed the probe against Russian Mafia uncovered information alleging the gamblers might haver tried to fix the 2007-2008 UEFA Cup Semi-Final between Bayer Munich and eventual champions Zenit St. Petersburgh. However, both the clubs denied of having some knowledge of any match fixing.
- 2008 – On October 4, suspicious online betting on the match between Derby County and Norwich City led to the questions on the validity of the Football League match. It was believed that gamblers in Asia have staked a large amount of money during half-time which in turn raised concerns over the result. However, the inquiry conducted by the Football Association found no evidence to prove that the match was fixed. Derby counted won the match 2-1.
- 2009 – On May 6, 2009 a federal jury in Detroit accused six former athletes from the University of Toledo – three each from the school’s basketball and football team – on charges of match fixing conspiracy that ran from 2003 to 2006. This turned out to be the first major U.S. Betting case incorporating two sports team from the same college.
- In November 2009, police in Germany arrested people on doubt of fixing 200 football matches in nine countries. Among the suspected matches were those from the top leagues of Turkey, Slovenia, Hungary, Croatia, Bosnia and Austria and games form the second highest leagues of Switzerland, Germany and Belgium.
- In the year 2010, various professional Star craft players were doubted of being involved in illegal point shaving scheme, with seven gamers investigated and two people arrested. Two renowned gamers Crocus and Ma Jae Yoon were confirmed working as a broker between the gamers and betters.
- August 2010 Cricket – Pakistan vs England- By the fourth day of the test match, England is up winning the game against Pakistan by 225 runs and an innings making this Pakistan’s worst loss in the game of cricket in past 58 years. However, it is revealed that the team was involved in match fixing leading to the controversy of who is responsible for the loss.
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