Tennis star releases furious statement after bombshell Wimbledon match-fixing allegation

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Tennis star Nikoloz Basilashvili has released a furious statement after he and Aslan Karatsev found themselves at the centre of match-fixing allegations at the weekend. The duo, who are both ranked in the top 50, have denied the claims made against them.

On Sunday, German broadcaster ZDF published a report which claimed the duo had been offered money to fix matches. The allegations against Basilashvili relate to his first-round doubles match at last year’s Wimbledon as he and partner Radu Albot lost in three sets to Marton Fucsovics and Stefano Travaglia.

During the match, conspicuously high bets of up to £423,000 were placed. And proceedings are now reportedly pending with the International Tennis Integrity Agency. But Basilashvili has refuted all the claims.

“I found out that the German media mentioned my name in connection with alleged match-fixing,” said the Georgian. “Such accusations have no basis and I deny them. I will not accept that my reputation is damaged by unfounded and absurd accusations.

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“That is why I demand that the media stop with these allegations and lies. The public must be informed that I deny all these allegations. I have authorised a law firm in Germany to protect my interests and fight the spread of misinformation in every possible way.”

The report, meanwhile, linked Karatsev to five matches with unusually high betting swings in which he is said to be involved. And two of those fall within the period he worked with Belarusian coach Jahor Jacik, who has also coached and travelled with Basilashvilli in the past.

Jacik and Karatsev were reportedly investigated by French police during the 2020 French Open, but nothing has happened since. The report also claims that Russian Karatsev was allegedly involved in match-fixing at this year’s Stuttgart Open. Karacev has also denied all the claims made against him.

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As part of the report, ZDF spoke to an unnamed eastern European coach, who said: “Yatsyk has been involved in fixing for years, works with people who have to do with fixing in Russia, eastern Europe. He always has a lot of money with him, is on tour and is searching for young players who have problems. Financial, mental. Players he can convince with money.

“Jacik worked closely with Karatsev, Basilashvilli – watched them for years. Both incredibly talented players. But they had financial problems at beginning and major phases of weakness and slipped in the rankings. Each in a critical moment he approached them.”

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