X

A Banned FIFA Referee And How Sports Betting Data Monitoring Played A Key Role In Stopping Him

ZURICH, SWITZERLAND - OCTOBER 13: A FIFA logo next to the entrance during part I of the FIFA Council Meeting 2016 at the FIFA headquarters on October 13, 2016 in Zurich, Switzerland. (Photo by Philipp Schmidli/Getty Images)

The importance of monitoring of sports betting data via regulated markets was never more clear than in the case involving a banned referee from Ghana and a World Cup qualifying match.

The Court of Arbitration for Sport on Monday confirmed the lifetime ban the international soccer body FIFA imposed on Ghanaian match official Joseph Odartei Lamptey. That finding was helped immensely by the involvement of Sportradar, a sports data company that works with sporting leagues and regulated bookmakers on integrity matters.

More on the CAS decision on Lamptey

The case in question against Lamptey stemmed from a 2016 World Cup qualifying match between South Africa and Senegal.

Here’s what the CAS found regarding the match, according to FIFA:

In its ruling, CAS concluded that Mr Lamptey had intentionally taken two wrong decisions with the sole purpose of enabling a specific number of goals to be scored that would make pertinent bets successful. CAS concluded that there was an obvious link between these intentionally wrong decisions and a deviation from an expected betting pattern, and consequently found Mr Lamptey guilty of having unlawfully influenced the result of the match.

This CAS decision underlines FIFA’s commitment to protecting the integrity of football and its zero-tolerance policy on match manipulation, while also highlighting the effectiveness of its current agreement with Sportradar that uses their Fraud Detection System, which played an important role in this case.

You can see the full statement from FIFA here. The CAS finding is here.

Andreas Krannich, Sportradar’s Managing Director of Integrity, spoke with Legal Sports Report about the case. He noted that CAS put a lot of stock in Sportradar’s Fraud Detection System (FDS), saying that CAS equates the quantitative and qualitative data it provided as being on par with biological passport data used in a doping case.

“CAS found that our FDS report was a reliable means of evidence,” Krannich said. It’s the fourth time that Sportradar data has been used in a case in the CAS, but the most high-profile to date.

Sportradar also notes that it has played a role in 213 sporting disciplinary sanctions and 24 criminal convictions.

How Sportradar flagged the problem

Testimony from Sportradar in the CAS case broke down how Sportradar’s FDS flagged in-game wagering that was out of line with what bookmakers expected:

Dustin Gouker :Dustin Gouker has been a sports journalist for more than 15 years, working as a reporter, editor and designer -- including stops at The Washington Post and the D.C. Examiner.