Australia possesses the most active gamblers, and most of them are tired of all the match-fixing going on Australian sports. Perhaps that’s the reason Daniel Koellerer, a 27-year-old Austrian tennis player who never made an ATP final, has received a lifetime ban attempting to fix matches.
It’s more than just a stiff punishment. The Tennis Integrity Unit has thrown the book at Koellerer and has clearly made him an example, like baseball did to Pete Rose. The only thing about it is Koellerer isn’t Pete Rose. He’s nobody.
I wonder if they would be so quick to come down hard on higher ranked tennis player, like, say, Davydenko, just to throw out a completely random name.
The ban includes a 100,000 fine, which Koellerer probably can’t afford, unless he saved the money he made when he reached a career-high of No. 55 for two weeks in October 2009. It was then when the alleged violations were said to have began. Just prior to his lifetime ban, Koellerer was No. 385 in the latest world rankings.
“The life ban applies with immediate effect, and means that Mr. Koellerer is not eligible to participate in any tournament or competition organized or sanctioned by the governing bodies of professional tennis from the date of this statement,” the Tennis Integrity Unit said in a news release.
Technically, Koellerer was found guilty of three charges under Article D of the 2010 Uniform Tennis Anti-Corruption Program. His charges included, contriving or attempting to contrive the outcome of an event, soliciting or facilitating a player not to use his or her best efforts in an event and soliciting, offering or providing money, benefit or consideration to any other covered person with the intention of negatively influencing a player’s best efforts in any event.
What and exactly how Koellerer was fixing matches may never be known. The Tennis Integrity Unit did not reveal any details of the alleged match-fixing, or Koellerer’s hearing, except to release the details that the offences occurred between October 2009 and July 2010.