The New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement instructed sportsbooks in New Jersey to suspend all Ukrainian table tennis betting because of match-fixing that involved six players.
Match-Fixing Involves Six Players
The Sports Wagering Integrity Monitoring Association alerted New Jersey regulators on July 7 about the match-fixing concerns and to prohibit all bets on table tennis in Ukraine. The players involved in the match-fixing were Liliia Zaitseva, Ivan Gaysin, Karen Dzhanibekyan, Eduard Panichev, Anastasia Efimova and Gleb Zotov.
The notice by the state’s Division of Gaming Enforcement read, “While there is not yet evidence that any match-fixing occurred in New Jersey, due to the nature of the alert, the Division is suspending approval for wagering on all table tennis events in Ukraine, including but not limited to Setka Cup, WIN Cup, and TT Cup.”
Officials in Colorado have also banned Ukrainian table tennis betting on Thursday. Colorado is the newest state to legalize sports betting. The state legalized sports betting last year and officially went live this May.
The Indiana Gaming Commission suspended betting on any table tennis events that are not sanctioned by the sport’s top governing bodies like the International Table Tennis Federation and European Table Tennis Union. However, other states like Colorado, New Jersey, and Nevada are still allowed to wager on leagues like Setka Cup. The Setka Cup is a tournament organized by an international sportsbook for betting purposes.
In late March, the president of the Ukrainian Table Tennis Federation urged the stoppage of Setka Cup matches due to the pandemic and warned whoever played was subject to disqualification. Ultimately, 365 players were disqualified for competing in the Setka Cup during the coronavirus pandemic.
Betting On International Sports
Betting on international sports, including table tennis, has become more and more popular in the United States as major sporting events have halted due to the coronavirus. Hence, American bookmakers had to get creative with their offerings to the wagers.
According to ESPN, hundreds of thousands of dollars are being wagered each day on international sports. According to CBS Sports, one bettor hit on a 10-leg table tennis parlay through William Hill in May and won almost $25,000.
However, the uncertainties surrounding Ukrainian and Russian table tennis has been around for a while. In May, ESPN reported about the legitimacy of the matches that were being streamed with a tight camera angle, no commentators or announcers and poor scorekeeping.
The skepticism of the legitimacy of the matches came after knowing that the official information of the tournaments, like who is running the matches or where is the game taking place, was not revealed. Event organizers, participants, and even sportsbooks were reluctant to share the details.
Luckily, some major sporting events like MLS, UFC and NASCAR have returned, and several other sports leagues, including MLB and the NBA, will resume by the end of the month. Also, most casinos in Atlantic City have reopened in July.