The vast majority of the world’s population like to watch sports but betting on sports has become much more popular in recent times and whilst it adds to the excitement of watching the game, it can also lead to match fixing. The explosion of the internet and easy access to these online sites leaves you able to gamble on any sport of your choosing. Most people have a favourite sport and within that sport a favourite team or athlete for example. These can be held up as idols in high regard to many adults and also youngsters across the globe.
True Stories of Match Fixing and Corruption around the World
Match Fixing Horror Stories
What they see these people doing can inspire them to do greater things and in some cases affect their lives dramatically. However, there have been occasions in a sport where events have happened that shock and disgust the public. Events have been covered up and people have been deceived. When this all comes to light, the backlash is not pleasant and can result in a serious fall from grace for the athlete, team, or sport itself that this occurs in. Let’s have a look at a few horror stories from the world of sport.
Jake LaMotta is quite a famous name in the world of boxing even though his career ended a long time ago. The movie Raging Bull, directed by Martin Scorsese is based on the story of his life. However, a strong and popular fighter, the temptation was put in his path by none other than the American Mafia, which at the time controlled the world of boxing. He was a firm favourite in bookmakers’ eyes against Billy Fox. Yet, the odds and his behaviour in the ring suggested something was not right.
Years later, it would be revealed that he lost the fight on purpose to ensure he would receive a shot at the middleweight championship belt, which he felt he deserved but so far had been overlooked. He went on to beat Marcel Cerdan to be crowned champion, but the fallout went as far as hearings in the Senate, which drew massive attention and resulted at the end of the involvement of the Mafia and boxing forever.
Nowadays in baseball, people seem to find entertainment in people getting ejected from games. But one of the most famous scandals to hit the sport of baseball goes as far back as the 1919 World Series. The final games were to be played between the Chicago White Sox and the Cincinnati Reds. Unbeknownst to punters and the general public alike, a plot was underway to fix the game for financial gain by some team members of the Chicago team.
There were a lot of rumours going around and the amount of money placed on Cincinnati resulted in their odds dropping massively. These matched betting patterns caused an investigation to be held, leading the gambling organisers of the fix to admit their guilt. All the players who were involved saw their careers left in tatters, as they were banned from taking part in the sport of baseball.
Giants on the European stage and indeed a famous club known worldwide for their great teams over the years, Serie A club Juventus have been involved in their fair share of controversy in recent times. In 2006, allegations started coming to light that Luciano Moggi, then sporting director of the club had been trying to swing results of matches in Juve’s direction by having referees favourable to their club officiating.
As the investigation delved deeper, it was found not only Juventus were involved in this practice but clubs such as Lazio and Fiorentina too. However, Juventus received the toughest punishments of all the clubs, firstly being demoted to Serie B, the league’s second tier. They have deducted nine points as a handicap before the start of the season and while some star players left, others stayed to try and help achieve instant promotion back to Serie A, which they did.
Probably the most famous name to be associated with cycling in recent years, Lance Armstrong was the main man in the eyes of the American public. Having had some success early in his career, the discovery of a life threatening cancer led to him being out of the sport for two years. On his return, he won seven consecutive Tour de France from 1998 to 2005.
He retired after his 2005 win, although suspicions had been raised that he was involved in doping years earlier. Eventually, an investigation into these claims was held which judged Armstrong to have used performance-enhancing drugs. While he strongly denied all this, he was stripped of all his title wins and got a lifetime ban thus ending his career in sport.
Even one of the grandest stages of world sport has not escaped the clutches of teams or countries who are willing to cheat to achieve their goals. The biggest willing participant in recent times has been Russia. For years, Russian competitors faced allegations of doping at tournaments. Evidence has begun to surface that proves these suspicions have some truth.
Leading to a ban on the country competing at The Olympics, Russian athletes entered under Russia’s Olympic flag or indeed as neutrals. Russia believes they are being punished by Western powers, but the evidence is irrefutable. Serious damage has been done to Russia’s reputation in the sporting world but many countries believe this to be a just cause of action.
Summary – Match Fixing Needs to be Consigned to History
It is strange sometimes to see the lengths that people will stoop to, to ensure their success and fame on a global stage. Sometimes this results in notoriety and terrible aftermath. So many people watch and bet on sports, it’s horrible to know that people behind the scenes are conspiring to affect results in a certain way. Reputations have been ruined or careers ended.
Gambling can be an enjoyable pastime, but some athletes or clubs have taken the wrong route. However, for individuals outside of sports, receiving a no deposit bonus and betting on a game won’t have the same ramifications.
Being perceived to be a heroic idol or a team competing honestly when this is not true, not only damages them but sport as a whole. When it all comes crashing down, the people involved must ask themselves was it worth it. The allegations and truths that come out can affect lives outside of sports. These days, it’s hard to get away with much and that can only be a good thing going into the future.