According to football betting and integrity experts, there is a high tendency of suspicious betting among football matches in Asia.
Qatar.- Match-fixing is one of the main issues regarding sports and sports-betting and, according to experts, football matches in Asia have a higher tendency to be suspected of unlawful betting. Chief executive of the the International Centre for Sport Security (ICSS) Michael Hershman said that “ICSS investigations and media reports highlight that many match-fixing cases can be traced back to organized crime groups in Asia.”
As quoted by AGBrief, Mr Hershman explained in an interview with The Straits times that the fast paced growth of the online betting segment has been a key factor in the rise of match-fixing and added that sportsmen coming from regions of poverty may be tempted to take part in unlawful agreements. The media outlet explained there is a list of over 60 football matches played by Asian teams (from Asian Games to 2018 World Cup Qualifiers and more) since 2011 suspected of being fixed.
Furthermore, according to Hershman “lower wages for players and athletes are also a significant contributing factor within the region as match-fixers and organised crime groups tend to target players and teams who are more vulnerable as a result of their lower incomes.”
Associate research fellow Christian Kalb branded Asia as “the most important continent for sports betting” and said: “In Asia, 77 percent of sports bettings’ gross gaming revenue and more than 90 percent of sales remain illegal.”