Rafael Nadal: Young players tempted by match-fixing, praises crackdown

By @shauryaarya1 on
Rafael Nadal
Tennis - Mubadala World Tennis Championship - Rafael Nadal of Spain v Milos Raonic of Canada- Abu Dhabi, UAE - 30/12/16. Rafael Nadal of Spain in action. Reuters/Ahmed Jadallah

Tennis sensation Rafael Nadal was recently asked about his views over tennis players falling into the temptation of match-fixing.

Fourteen-time Grand Slam champion said the concern of match-fixing persists more at the lower levels of the world tennis tour. Due to minimal earnings, players are tempted into taking money from bookmakers.

“I have been on the tour for 12, 13 years, and I really don’t spend a lot of time in the lower categories of our events, you know, in Challengers and in Futures. I spent just months, so I cannot talk much about it,” Nadal said.

Nadal’s comments about the match-fixing issue surrounding Australian Oliver Anderson, 18, came soon after the multi-Grand Slam star progressed into the men’s quarterfinals of the Brisbane International by defeating German Mischa Zverev.

Anderson was handed the charges for match-fixing at a tournament in Traralgon by Victoria Police last October.

“I didn’t know anything about [Anderson],” Nadal said, as reported by The Australian. “But if he’s arrested is because we are doing the right job, you know. That’s the most important thing.”

Anderson was crowned champion at the Australian Open junior boys singles title last January. This came two weeks following his victory through qualifying and making it into the main ATP singles draw at the Brisbane International.

However, he faced defeat at the hands of Croatian Ivan Dodig.

Anderson was charged with engaging in conduct that corrupts a betting outcome, according to Sydney Morning Herald. The match-fixing issue involved him being allegedly approached to throw away the first set of his match against Harrison Lombe. He conceded the first round 4-6 and won the next two 6-0, 6-2.

Nadal remarked about the series of arrests made in Spain, where 34 people were taken into custody for their involvement in a betting ring operation. Those arrested included six players. “In Spain it happened a couple of weeks ago that [a] few people get arrested,” Nadal said. “And it's great, I think that the sport is doing the right things to fight against that now they are in trouble."