Based on suspicious betting patterns, concerns have arisen that three of this year’s Wimbledon matches were fixed, according to the Tennis Integrity Unit, the independent organization in charge of investigating corruption in the sport.
While the overseeing group did not specify which matches are under investigation, they did say that two occurred during the qualifying rounds, while one took place in the main draw.
A BuzzFeed News and BBC investigation last year revealed evidence that the sport’s authorities were turning a blind eye to widespread match-fixing. Since the release of this report, the Tennis Integrity Unit has more than doubled its personnel, while the sport launched an independent review into “integrity in the sport.”
The news regarding Wimbledon was released in the Tennis Integrity Unit’s quarterly briefing report, which mentioned that a total of 53 matches were under investigation, including one at the French Open. The group’s report specified that a match being flagged is not evidence of match-fixing, but would likely prompt further review.
The news regarding Wimbledon comes as a surprise, as most matches flagged by the Tennis Integrity Unit involve play at lower levels of competition. Alerts about matches in the sport’s big tournaments are rare; this is only the second time it has happened at Wimbledon.
Alerts are passed along to the sport’s authorities by major betting operators. The Tennis Integrity Unit has received 83 alerts through the first half of 2017, down from the 121 matches flagged during the same period in 2016.