Bangkok, Thailand, March 19, 2023: The Olympic Council of Asia will put in place a reporting mechanism at the 19th Asian Games in Hangzhou, China this September whereby athletes can inform the authorities of manipulation of competition.
Speaking on the second day of the OCA/OS Athletes Forum, Tony Tarraf, OCA Head of Athletes Development Department and Special Projects, unveiled the OCA’s plans to combat the scourge of match fixing, competition manipulation and betting.
“For the first time at the Asian Games we will have a way for athletes to report on the manipulation of competitions. We are doing this to protect our athletes. Anyone caught doing this in Hangzhou will face sanctions and bans,” revealed Tarraf, who was making a presentation on the Prevention of the Manipulation of Competitions.
“We will have a dedicated hotline - firstname.lastname@example.org - for athletes to inform the authorities. This will be a confidential hotline and will be operating 24/7,” Tarraf disclosed.
Athletes’ Committees from 43 National Olympic Committees were informed that match fixing and betting was widespread in Asia among many sports including cricket, football, tennis, handball, volleyball and judo.
“We have to combat this menace and one way to do that is to remember the four main rules which are: Don’t Fix, Don’t Bet, Don’t Share Information and to Speak-Up,” Tarraf pointed out.
Delegates were also reminded of the three pillars on combating competition manipulation put in place by the International Olympic Committee and OCA which was: (a) regulation and legislation, (b) raising awareness, and (c) monitoring, intelligence and investigation.
“What I am doing today is raising awareness, but we must not forget the other two pillars which are equally important,” Tarraf said.
During the interactive session, members of Athletes’ Committees of China, Jordan and Sri Lanka also made brief presentations of how their NOCs are battling the manipulation of competition.
China’s Olympic golfer Feng Shanshan revealed that efforts were being made to update the country’s sports law.
“Also, before the Tokyo Olympics and Beijing Winter Olympics, the Chinese sports delegations had sessions similar to this where the athletes were made aware of this tricky problem,” said Feng, winner of the bronze medal in women’s golf at Rio 2016.