Younes Rachidi Banned from Tennis for Match-Fixing
The conviction of Moroccan Younes Rachidi for 135 charges of match-fixing has struck a chord with all sports fans. His lifetime ban from professional sports came as a surprise, even to the top sports betting sites in the Middle East. Although Rachidi was far from a household name, having never reached the top 1,000 rankings, he was a regular on the ITF Futures Tour, the amateur tennis circuit, where he managed to reach his highest doubles ranking of 475 on the ATP list.
The International Tennis Federation (ITF) conducted a thorough investigation and issued the ban in August 2021. In addition to the permanent restriction, The International Tennis Integrity Agency (ITIA) also imposed a $34,000 fine for the 135 violations of TACP. Following the joint investigations by Belgian law enforcement and the ITIA, it was also discovered that Rachidi had been involved in match-fixing together with two Algerian players who also received a ban.
After a thorough investigation, it was revealed that Rachidi had been actively involved in fixing match results in Spain, Portugal, Egypt, and Nigeria. Those activities included losing sets, games, and occasionally entire matches, in order to manipulate the results.
In her ruling, Independent Anti-Corruption Hearing Office Janie Soublière concluded that all allegations of the report were factually true. Consequently, Younes Rachidi was permanently barred from attending, coaching, or taking part in any tennis event recognized or authorized by the tennis governing bodies. The Anti-Corruption Hearing Office also imposed sanctions on the two Algerian players who were found to be accomplices in the match-fixing scheme while also implying that these offenses are despicable for any tennis player.
Match-Fixing: A Serious Offense in Sports
Interfering in a game is a major breach of professional sports etiquette, particularly in tennis. The International Tennis Federation (ITF) has a zero-tolerance policy for match-fixing and any report of inappropriate behavior is taken very seriously. The integrity of the sport is upheld by the ITF, which investigates all criminal complaints, no matter how small or large the infraction may be.
Every sporting competition is built on fair play, which provides all participants with an equal chance to win. Players begin the game with a competitive spirit and a desire to win. They strive to keep the game’s quality high while providing spectators with an exciting and unpredictable match.
That is why any form of cheating in professional sports must be strongly condemned by organizations like the ITF. According to a statement made by the ITF’s integrity unit, any other individuals who may have been involved in the match-fixing activities will be the subject of further investigation.
The tennis ethics regulatory bodies implied that the 135 offenses committed by the Moroccan player in 2017 and 2018 involved violations of the Tennis Anti-Corruption Programs (TACP).
Rule D.1 states that anyone playing professional tennis is prohibited to “directly or indirectly, contrive or attempt to manipulate the result or any other element during competition”. And yet, the former tennis player never ceased to break this rule of TACP, applicable to all professional tennis players.
The ITIA was created by the international governing organizations of the sport to manage issues that might affect the integrity of sports. It has proven its commitment to preserving tennis’ honesty by taking decisive actions against those who manipulate match results.
Although the situation with Younes Rachidi is unfortunate, it serves as a warning to other competitors showing that cheating has serious consequences and that the ITF will not hesitate to take legal action and punish offenders if proven guilty.
The Younes Rachidi scandal has emphasized the importance of upholding the principles of sportsmanship and fair play in professional sports. The ITF’s decision to fine Rachidi $34,000 and forever ban him from stepping on a professional tennis court serves as a warning that match-fixing is a serious breach of sports ethics and will not be tolerated under any circumstance.
Unfortunately, sports controversies are a fact of life, but they should not be taken lightly. Such behavior not only erodes the competitive nature of the game but also damages the reputation of the sport and the trust of the fans in the athletes. This case is a stark reminder that any sports game must preserve its fairness in order to earn the respect of fans and fellow players.
CAF President Tasks Infantino on African Football Growth
By Adedapo Adesanya
The President of the Confederation of African Football (CAF), Mr Patrice Motsepe, has congratulated President Gianni Infantino on his re-election as President of the Federation of International Football Association (FIFA), calling for more development for the sport on the continent.
He said CAF and football in Africa have had a committed and dependable partner in President Infantino and FIFA in the development and growth of African and global football.
“CAF is committed to developing and promoting football for boys and girls as well as amateur and professional football on the African Continent. The construction and upgrading of football infrastructure and facilities and improving the standard and quality of football in Africa are essential for African football to become globally competitive and self-sufficient.
“President Gianni Infantino and FIFA have been committed and dependable partners in developing, uplifting and promoting African football. CAF is delighted and welcomes the re-election of President Infantino as FIFA President and is confident that football in Africa and globally will continue to develop and grow and be a force for good under his leadership,” the CAF president noted.
The re-election of President Gianni Infantino took place in Rwanda and was the first elective congress in the history of FIFA to take place in Africa.
The 52-year-old Italian-Swiss, renewed under the same conditions in 2019 by the delegates of the 211 member federations, could remain at the head of world football until 2031, with his first three years (2016-2019) being considered incomplete because he completed the tenure of the scandalous former helmsman, Mr Sepp Blatter.
The FIFA chief has seen some changes in his first official term at the helm of affairs. One such was an 18 per cent increase in income and 45 per cent in reserves over the 2019-22 cycle compared to the previous one, allowing the body to increase its subsidies to confederations and federations further.
African football is set to benefit more, starting with the passage of the men’s World Cup from 32 to 48 teams in the 2026 edition, which will be shared between the United States, Canada, and Mexico. The continent could see up to 9-10 countries representing in the tournament moving forward from the current five teams.
Infantino Announces Changes After Re-election as FIFA President
By Adedapo Adesanya
The President of the Federation of International Football Association (FIFA), Mr Gianni Infantino, has been reelected to begin his second term as the head of the world’s football governing body.
This came during the 73rd FIFA Congress held in Kigali, the capital of Rwanda, on Thursday.
He took over the reins from Mr Joseph Blatter, who had to leave the spot due to a scandal in 2016 but was officially elected for his first term in 2019, and upon this re-election, he can continue for another term in 2027 until 2031.
Speaking immediately after the re-election to serve from 2023 to 2027, President Infantino said, “Being FIFA President is an incredible honour, an incredible privilege, and it is also a great responsibility. I am truly humbled and touched by your support, and I promise you that I will continue serving FIFA, serving football all over the world, and serving all 211 FIFA member associations.”
It was the first time in its history that an elective FIFA Congress took place in Africa, and the proceedings were opened by Mr Paul Kagame, President of the Republic of Rwanda.
In his address, President Kagame welcomed delegates from the 208 gathered member associations to his country and congratulated President Infantino on his impending re-election.
The FIFA President stressed FIFA’s role in organising competitions and developing football.
The President revealed that the 32-team FIFA Women’s World Cup in Australia and New Zealand later this year would receive an extensive increase in prize money to over $150 million – more than three times the value from the last tournament in 2019 and 10 times more than in 2015.
President Infantino also referenced impending changes to the FIFA Under-17 World Cups at the boys’ and girls’ level, which will see those tournaments played on an annual basis, as well as the launch of the FIFA World Series and the revised 32-team FIFA Club World Cup, with the intention of giving teams from every confederation more opportunities to compete on the global stage.
Continued good governance was also a key pledge – including additional changes to the transfer system and a continued commitment to financial sustainability across the football pyramid.
For the next financial cycle, he made the commitment of $11 billion in revenue over the next four years, which represents a substantial increase on the initial target of $6.4 billion from the previous cycle and an increase on the $7.5 billion in revenue which was eventually reported.
Top Sports Bettors Worldwide: People Who Sports Bet for a Living
Have you ever wondered who the world’s most successful sports bettors are? Are they modern-day Great Gatsby, extravagant millionaires, tech gurus, or analysts?
Sports betting is a multibillion-dollar industry. The world’s most successful sports bettors demonstrate big money involved in the sector by betting amounts on the top gambling platforms like betway, etc. Stay with us as we list out the top sports bettors of the world and walk you through the characteristics that define them.
Ben Patz, also known as Parlay Patz because of his successful parlay betting, was born in 1996 and began sports betting as soon as he was of legal gambling age. Patz, an American University of Paris and Columbia Business School graduate, realized early in his career that teams were more concerned with winning the game than with scoring points, so betting money came naturally to him.
Tony Bloom is a British professional sports bettor known as “The Lizzard” due to his cold-blooded approach to betting; as an industry veteran, Tony competed in the world’s most prestigious poker competitions.
The Lizzard is said to have won up to $1 million in a single football game. Bloom is now the owner of the English football club Brighton & Hove Albion and a key figure at StarLizard, the UK’s betting syndicate and consultancy firm.
Zeljko Ranogajec, born in Australia, is best known for his horse-betting activities. Zeljko is said to bet on every thoroughbred horse race in Australia. The billionaire employs computer technology to queue bets in the TAB system just seconds before the race begins. This way, he ensures that other bettors do not copy him and that bookmakers do not profit from the tumbling odds he generates.
Marco D’Angelo has been betting since the 1980s. He moved to Las Vegas in 2008 and rose to prominence in 2010 when he established one of the longest-documented streaks in baseball betting. The 25 consecutive games he won resulted in a massive profit.
Marco is well-liked for his openness and willingness to assist other bettors and show them his tricks. His betting strategy is based on a percentage system, as he always bets a small portion of his budget to avoid losses. He likes playing on Betway and other leading betting platforms.
The Rise of Sports Betting in Nigeria is fuelled by many such sports bettors worldwide. People who want to make it big in the betting arena can learn a lot from the insight and traits of these betting legends.
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