16th July 2018

Sports Integrity Briefs – 16 July 2018

• Anti-Doping Switzerland has confirmed that it has opened proceedings against wrestler Martin Grab, after he issued a statement confirming that he had returned an adverse analytical finding (AAF) for tamoxifen. ‘In a letter dated 26/06/2018, Anti-Doping Switzerland informed me that my A sample was positive’, reads Grab’s statement. ‘The substance tamoxifen was found. An anti-tumour anti-oestrogen agent used to prevent and treat breast cancer […] I cannot explain this positive A sample. I am convinced that I am clean today.’ Grab said that he had requested analysis of his B sample, and the result is pending.

• Police in China’s Guangdong Province have arrested over 540 people suspected of being part of an online football gambling ring that utilised cryptocurrency Bitcoin, reports Xinhua. It is understood that the suspects were involved with more than 20 gangs involving 70 mobile applications and internet sites, as well as 250 chat groups, all of which were shut down. It is reported that the platform accumulated 330,000 members in eight months, and more than 10 billion yuan (€1.3 million) was involved. 

• Criminal charges have been levied against former cricketer Gulam Bodi under South Africa’s Prevention and Combating of Corrupt Activities Act (PRECCA), which details offences related to corrupt activities in relation to sporting events, reports Netwerk24. In January 2016, Bodi was sanctioned with a 20 year ban by Cricket South Africa (CSA) after admitting several charges of fixing matches during the 2015 Ram Slam Twenty20 tournament. Six other players – Alviro Petersen, Thami Tsolekile, Lonwabo Tsotsobe, Jean Symes, Pumi Matshikwe and Ethy Mbhalati – were also sanctioned by CSA (media statements here, here, and here) for their involvement.

• The Russian Athletics Federation (RusAF) has confirmed the identity of six athletes whose application to compete as Authorised Neutral Athletes (ANAs) at international events whilst RusAF remans suspended was refused. The athletes are: Veronika Chervinskaya (вероника Червинская – 100m hurdles); Kirill Frolov (Кирилл Фролов, race walker); Ekaterina Ivoniva (Екатерина Ивонина, steeplechase); Anna Avdeyeva (Анна Авдеева, shot put); Elena Mashinistova (Елена Машинистова, long jump); and Maksim Yunyakin (Максим Юнякин, long jump). Last week, the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) confirmed it had approved the application of five Russians to compete internationally as ANAs.

• Spanish tennis player Fernando Verdasco has confirmed the Tennis Integrity Unit (TIU) interviewed him about his first round doubles match with David Marrero against Leonardo Mayer and João Sousa (see below). Last week, Pinnacle Sports told the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) that a men’s doubles match had been flagged for suspicious betting patterns. A suspicious alert doesn’t mean that match manipulation has taken place, just that bookmakers have spotted unusual patterns in the betting markets that merit investigation.

• The International Equestrian Federation (FEI) has confirmed that two horses and one human have returned adverse analytical findings (AAFs) for prohibited substances. The FEI announced details of the cases on 12 July.

Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) has postponed the Lankan Premier League Twenty20 tournament indefinitely, until an elected body is constituted to run the SLC. ‘SLC believes that such a tournament should be organised following a wider consultative process and also taking into consideration the views of the stakeholders’, read a statement. It is understood that SLC Board elections were suspended in May due to concerns that those being elected might violate International Cricket Council (ICC) Regulations prohibiting links to gambling.

• The British Horseracing Authority (BHA) will hear a disciplinary case against Timothy Brennan involving the use of inside information to cheat at gambling today and tomorrow. The charge is that Brennan communicated ‘directly or indirectly to Michael Brennan, during the relevant period, inside information, relating to the prospects of FAUGHEEN (IRE) in the 2016 Cheltenham Champion Hurdle, obtained in his capacity as a Veterinary Surgeon to FAUGHEEN (IRE) which was not publicly available or authorised for such disclosure by the Rules of Racing knowing or suspecting that such information would or might be used to gain an unfair advantage in the betting market intending to make a gain for himself or another and/or to cause loss to another’, read a statement.

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