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London Olympics organizers to meet bookmakers to avert potential betting threat

London, Mon, 19 Mar 2012 ANI

London, Mar 19(ANI): Organisers of the London Olympics will meet leading UK bookmakers to avert an illegal gambling threat during the Games.


The International Olympic Committee's (IOC) head of ethics, Paquerette Girard Zappelli, lead lawyer on betting and doping at the London Organising Committee of the Olympic Games (Locog), Kendrah Potts and Gambling Commission head Nick Tofiluk, will hold discussions with betting industry representatives in Westminster.


The agenda remains secret, but is believed to focus on how various bodies will tackle potential betting corruption and how suspect betting patterns will be communicated between officials.


The meeting comes in the wake of the trial of three Pakistan cricketers convicted for spot-fixing during the 2010 Lord's Test against England, and former Essex fast bowler Mervyn Westfield jailed for four months after admitting receiving 6,000 pounds to deliberately bowl poorly in a 2009 match against Durham.


The exact level of the threat of Olympic betting corruption is disputed as the betting industry said the Olympics will attract hardly any interest from punters.


"The reality is that the Olympics is a very small event in betting terms. The threat seems to have been overstated," the Guardian quoted an industry insider, as saying.


IOC President Jacques Rogge had earlier said that betting-related corruption was a threat to the integrity of sport.


"It is a world problem and it is a very pernicious problem. With the introduction of broadband, you can bet worldwide. The danger is that from illegal betting comes match-fixing and you see more and more attempts to manipulate matches. It is as dangerous as doping for the credibility of sport. It's only the beginning of a huge battle," he added. (ANI)



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