ITIA bans Moroccan player Simohamed Hirs for match fixing

Moroccan tennis player Simohamed Hirs has been banned for life by the International Tennis Integrity Agency (ITIA) for match-fixing violations.

Hirs has been permanently banned from either playing in or attending any tennis event authorised or sanctioned by the tennis international governing bodies, and will also be fined $35,000.

The case against the player – who had a highest ATP singles ranking of 1798 – was ruled on by ITIA Anti-Corruption Hearing Officer Amani Khalifa from 28 July 2021, and found the player guilty of three match fixing charges.

Hirs was charged with directly or indirectly attempting to contrive the outcome of an event, and was also found guilty of failing to report a corrupt approach as well as soliciting other players ‘not to use their best efforts’.

Although tennis remains one of the sports most commonly impacted by match fixing and betting irregularities, the prevalence of illicit activity in the sport has significantly declined in 2021, according to the International Betting Integrity Association’s (IBIA) Q2 trading report.

Despite this decline, the IBIA undertook investigations of two 2021 Wimbledon  matches, after sports betting operators reported ‘possible irregular betting patterns’ to the organisation.

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