Monday, August 27, 2007

The U.S. Open, Now With Less Gambling

I've heard that people will bet on anything, though I've never thought of tennis as being something that's heavily involved in any type of wagering. A $20,000 bet on shooting left-handed free throws? Probably happens all of the time. Wagering on fantasy football teams? Definitely! Placing bets on tennis? Uh, I guess so.

Well, U.S. Open officials are concerned enough that they hired a security firm and set up a "whistleblower hotline".

The U.S. Open hired a security firm run by a former New York City police commissioner, set up a whistle-blower hotline and is taking other steps to make sure it doesn't wind up with a gambling scandal.

In the wake of a recent betting investigation in tennis and a former NBA referee's admission he gambled on games he officiated, the U.S. Tennis Association decided "to see if there's something more that we can do," USTA senior director of communications Chris Widmaier said Thursday.

A whistleblower hotline? I have a feeling all of the lines are going to be jammed up with Richard Williams calling to complain about his daughters.

Though, if the hotline doesn't work there are signs to remind everyone about just how bad gambling is.
Also, signs describing the Open's gambling policy have been posted in locker rooms, player lounges, training rooms and elsewhere around the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center.

Under the heading, "REMINDER," the signs read: "The participation in or aiding and abetting, directly or indirectly, of any form of gambling or betting involving tennis is strictly prohibited. The USTA has a zero tolerance policy on gambling or betting involving tennis, and any violation of such policy will result in immediate disciplinary action."

Right now, Roger Goodell is having similar ones placed in NFL locker rooms, though they read "Gambling On The NFL Is Punishable By Death".

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