Italian tennis players Daniele Bracciali and Potito Starace in trouble
Not a standalone case
Italian tennis players Daniele Bracciali and Potito Starace have landed themselves in trouble, after intercepted internet conversations, claiming them to have sold tennis matches were printed on the Italian media on Wednesday. There have been widespread match-fixing inquiries happening in soccer and the conversations were part of the exhaustive data the judicial investigators were sorting out in Cremona.
In a conversation via Skype in July 2007, Bracciali discusses about a match in Newport with an accountant against American tennis player Scoville Jenkins.. The accountant was later arrested in 2011. Jenkins also went on to win the match 6-2 6-1.
In 2011, an owner of a betting parlor is heard speaking about a match that Starace agreed to sell, which was the final of a tournament in Casablanca.
Starace lost that final 6-1, 6-2 to Pablo Andujar of Spain.
Roberto Di Martino, the prosecutor who is leading the Cremona inquiry, confirmed to the Associated Press about the authenticity of the conversations and added that foreign players could also be involved.
'I can't rule that out. ''But I can't say anything more for now.'' Di Martino said.
Initially focussing only on soccer matches, the Last Bet operation has resulted in more than 100 players coming under the scanner, since the middle of 2011. Now the operation has branched out to other sports as well.
Bracciali and Starace are two among the five Italian players who were suspended in 2007-08 by the ATP for betting, for a period of six weeks to nine months. Daniel Koellerer of Austria and David Savic of Spain were also banned for life in 2011 and 2012 on accounts of match-fixing.
Earlier this year, the Tennis Integrity Unit, that was formed by the ATP, WTA tours, International Tennis Federation and Grand Slam Committee banned Russian player Andrey Kumantsov for life.