Betfair has signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) aimed at ensuring the integrity of all matches played under the ECB’s watch.
The two parties will share information on potential betting integrity issues arising from any match played under the jurisdiction of the ECB, including all England internationals and county cricket games, with Betfair required to share any relevant customer and/or transactional data with the ECB.
The agreement marks the 49th MOU Betfair has signed with sports governing bodies across the world since inking its first with the Jockey Club (now the British Horseracing Authority) way back in 2003. These include FIFA, UEFA and the FA (football), as well as the ATP and ITF (tennis).
Once agreements are in place, sports governing bodies have free access to the bets placed on their respective sports, both in real-time and retroactively, and can liaise with Betfair’s eight-strong Integrity Team. SGBs are however are only given customer identities if an investigation deems this necessary.
Betfair’s chief legal & regulatory affairs officer Martin Cruddace said the agreement was an example of the betting exchange and sports governing bodies working openly and co-operatively to protect the integrity of both sports and of betting.
“The interests of sports governing bodies, like the ECB, and Betfair are completely aligned in wanting to ensure sport is free from corruption and that consumers can bet in a transparent manner on exciting sporting events,” said Cruddace.
The ECB’s anti-corruption manager Chris Watts added: “This will form part of our on-going efforts to protect the integrity of the sport and help ensure that cricket at all levels is free from the taint of corruption.”
Four members of the Pakistan national cricket team were convicted in November of last year of “spot-fixing”, or of taking bribes from a bookmaker to bowl no-balls at specific times in a Test Match at Lord’s in 2010.
Around 46,000 of Betfair’s active customers bet on English cricket each year, with 90% of those betting on England games and 40% on domestic fixtures. The betting exchange offered a huge 5,436 markets on cricket over the last 12 months, it said today.