NJ Suspends Table Tennis Betting Due To Match-Fixing Worries

New Jersey and its gaming authorities are continually doing their best to make sure your sports wagering is legal and above board, with full transparency. Recently, in order to protect the validity of wagers on Ukrainian Table Tennis in the Garden State, the New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement (NJDGE) shut down all wagering on the popular betting league in the wake of a match-fixing scandal.

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It’s not something you would see if sports betting was still illegal in the Garden State.

Can you imagine that an illegal, unlicensed and unregulated offline bookie would give you a warning not to bet on a particular sports event in fear of it being fixed?

No, neither can we.

However, now that sports wagering is legal in the State of New Jersey, customer protection and warning sports bettors not to place wagers on a certain sporting event, is precisely what the NJDGE is all about.

With that in mind, New Jersey online sportsbooks are no longer allowing any wagers to be placed on Ukrainian table tennis. According to media reports, the Sports Wagering Integrity Monitoring Association informed the NJDGE on July 7 2020 of concerns that Ukrainian Table Tennis matches were under threat of potential match fixing. The update urged sportsbooks to suspend all wagering involving any matches in Ukraine or matches anywhere that involved Liliia Zaitseva, Ivan Gaysin, Karen Dzhanibekyan, Eduard Panichev, Anastasia Efimova and Gleb Zotov.

“While there is not yet any evidence that any match fixing occurred in New Jersey, due the nature of the alert, the Division is suspending approval for wagering on all table tennis events in the Ukraine, including but not limited to the Setka Cup, WIN Cup, and TT Cup,” the notice read.

The news in New Jersey comes on the back of the, the Indiana Gaming Commission suspending betting on any table tennis competitions not authorized by the sport’s top governing bodies following an ESPN report into match-fixing in May.

In late March, the Ukrainian Table Tennis Federation (UTTF) disqualified 365 players for competing in Setka Cup matches during the pandemic. Those UTTF matches not overseen by the International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF) and the European Table Tennis Union (ETTU) proved to be the biggest concern due to ambiguity over match regulation.

The suspension of betting follows a pandemic sports lockout period where literally hundreds of thousands of dollars have been bet on international table tennis each-and-every day.

The rise and fall of Ukrainian Table Tennis Betting

With the NBA, NHL and MLB shut down in the wake of the global pandemic, gambling on table tennis has increased heavily both here in New Jersey and neighboring Pennsylvania. One bettor in the Garden State hit on a 10-leg table tennis parlay through William Hill Sportsbook in May and won nearly $25K.

It seems the incentive for the Ukrainian players and event organizers to skim a little off the top became far too much of a temptation.

Thankfully, turning our collective eyes to the current post-pandemic shutdown situation (subject to change), popular sports in the United States and around the world are slowly resuming their respective competitions.

Major League Soccer (MLS), the UFC and NASCAR have already resumed their operations. Moreover, Major League Baseball (MLB) as well as the NBA plan to resume their competitive play in the upcoming weeks.

Given mainstream sports are coming back and Table Tennis has turned out to be less than reputable, New Jersey players that have spent the last 4 months wagering on exotic sports may quickly lose interest before waiting for those sports to be cleaned up.

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