Suspend betting on Aussie sport not solution

12:18 AM 08 Feb 2013 NZDT
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The TAB shares the concerns of New Zealand sporting organisations and sports fans and harness racing fans following the release of a report alleging drug-taking, match-fixing and links to organised crime in Australian sport but says suspending legal betting on Australian competitions is not the way to address the problem.

TAB General Manager Martin Saunders says the New Zealand betting agency has stringent processes in place to monitor all sports betting activity.

"Integrity is our ultimate priority and we commit a huge amount of time, effort and resource to making sure our customers can be confident that the sports fixtures they are betting on are above board. We have the ability to proactively red-flag and suspend unusual activity and we then investigate this alongside the sporting body involved.

"We are fortunate as the country's national betting agency to have really strong and effective relationships with our national sporting organisations so, as with all sports bodies and sports fans on both sides of the Tasman, we're concerned by the implications of the Australian Crime Commission report.

"However, we should not rush to judge or make rash decisions until we know more, and simply suspending betting on Australian sport wouldn't address the issues. In fact, this would only drive sports betting underground to illegal bookmakers, and we've seen from previous incidents of this nature in international sport that's where the problem really is."

John Mitchell

Manager - Media and Government Relations

New Zealand Racing Board

 

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