(Reuters) - Uzbekistan tennis officials Sherzod Hasanov and Arkhip Molotyagin have been banned for life for betting-related offences, the International Tennis Federation (ITF) said on Wednesday.
Following investigations by the Tennis Integrity Unit (TIU), the pair were found guilty of using a mobile phone to communicate scores of matches at which they were officiating “to a third party” at an ITF Futures event in Israel last September.
“Uzbekistan tennis officials Sherzod Hasanov and Arkhip Molotyagin have been banned for life and had their ITF officiating certification permanently revoked after being found guilty of offences under the Code of Conduct for Officials,” the ITF said in a statement.
The TIU also discovered that the duo delayed the inputting of scores in their PDA device at courtside “to allow the third party and/or other third parties to benefit by placing bets on matches at which they were officiating at the tournament.”
The pair were also ruled to have fraudulently manipulated scores by inputting fictitious deuce games in their PDA devices while officiating at other ITF Futures events over a seven-month period.
Hasanov was ruled to “counseled or procured another official and/or officials”, including Molotyagin, “to participate in the fraudulent manipulation of the ‘livescoring’ system” at the start of 2015.
Reporting by Ian Rodricks in Bengaluru; Editing by Ian Chadband