On 27 January 2016 the Governing Bodies of International Tennis (the ATP, the WTA, the ITF and the Grand Slam Board) announced that an Independent Review Panel (IRP) would be appointed to undertake a review of integrity in the sport, in the light of media allegations in January 2016 of match fixing and in the light of the developments in internet gambling since the Tennis Anti-Corruption Programme (TACP), the Tennis Integrity Unit (TIU) and the education programme called the Tennis Integrity Protection Programme (TIPP) came into operation on 1 January 2009.
The IRP is made up of Adam Lewis QC, Beth Wilkinson and Marc Henzelin. Charles Russell Speechlys LLP has been appointed as the Solicitors and Secretariat to the IRP. Read more about the Panel and Secretariat.
The factual ambit of the issues to be considered by the Independent Review of Integrity in Tennis covers, principally, the situation where a player has determined in advance to deliberately lose a match or part of it. It does not cover doping or other forms of cheating to win, or other possible conduct that could bring the sport into disrepute. The Terms of Reference and Protocols for the IRP can be found here. In investigating the effectiveness and appropriateness of existing rules, practices and procedures in relation to integrity in the sport, the IRP will review the operation of the TACP, TIU and TIPP. Further information can be found here.
The IRP has conducted an extensive evidence gathering exercise in accordance with the Terms of Reference. This has included:
- Interviewing well over 100 individuals from across the sport, including current and former representatives from the Governing Bodies of International Tennis, players at different levels of the game, tournament organisers, officials and individuals from the TIU.
- Interviewing over 50 entities from outside the sport, including betting operators, data supply companies, gambling regulators, law enforcement agencies and academics.
- Reviewing documentary evidence provided by the Governing Bodies of International Tennis and the TIU.
- Obtaining input from various subject-matter experts.
- Conducting an analysis of data relating to the TIU’s caseload since 2009.
- Conducting a survey of players.
With the evidence gathering process effectively complete, the IRP is now in the process of producing its Interim Report that will set out its provisional findings on matters of fact, its preliminary conclusions on matters of evaluation, and a number of possible recommendations aimed at further safeguarding integrity. As set out in the Terms of Reference, if the IRP intends in its Interim Report to make criticism of individuals or organisations, the IRP will notify those individuals or organisations, who will be given a reasonable opportunity to make representations in relation to such proposed criticisms.
The Interim Report will be made public for consultation with all interested parties, who will be invited to provide their feedback to the IRP.
The date for the publication of the Interim Report will be communicated on this website once it has been fixed by the IRP.
Once the consultation feedback has been considered by the IRP, a Final Report will be produced. This report will be made public. The Governing Bodies of International Tennis have committed to fund and implement the IRP’s recommendations made in the Final Report. Read more on the process here.
Any questions relating to the IRP’s work should be addressed to Jonathan Ellis of Charles Russell Speechlys LLP at Tennis.IRP@crsblaw.com.
Updated on 26 April 2017.