Following recent revelations that Chinese gamblers and match-fixers had been active in South Korea’s third division, I talked to Declan Hill.
Hill is a journalist who specialises in match-fixing in football and has written a book on the subject called The Fix
If you want to fix a match, what should you do?
You have to think about the hierarchy of the team. A Bandarq match-fixer is like a spider in the middle of the web. On one side, he has to get the players and referee. It is not easy as he may not know the players. Even if you do, it is not so simple to call them and ask.
So they hire the access. They will him someone who they call ‘a runner’. He will talk to a senior member of the team. Ideally this is a player who had very high status in the team but recently left – perhaps he is also having some financial problems. He perhaps asks his former team-mates to come to a hotel and meet some friends.
The other side of the spider’s web is the gambling market. Many of the bookmakers, know both the big punters and the big fixers, so they have to hide their identity. They do this by hiring people they call ‘beards’. Literally, people who disguise who is placing the bets, but with the internet, this is much easier.
How does it work?
The best way is to get a star player and maybe two or three others in a weaker team. Most people think that match-fixing is all about getting a strong team to lose to a weak team but that is not the case. Match-fixers don’t care about that – they just want certainty and …