Is the Fix in on Tennis?
The big tennis news should be the Australian Open. Instead, the first Grand Slam tournament of the year is overshadowed by allegations of match-fixing, sports betting, throwing matches, ignoring evidence all with the involvement of dozens of pro players, the Tennis Integrity Unit and shadowy gambling syndicates.

The BBC and Buzzfeed received secret files from whistle blowers. According to the BBC, "Those files indicate that, over the past decade, 16 players who have been ranked in the world's top 50 have been repeatedly flagged to the Tennis Integrity Unit (TIU) over suspicions they have thrown matches.

All of the players, including winners of Grand Slam titles, were allowed to continue competing."

In fact, it's been suggested that eight of those flagged players are currently playing in this year's Australian Open.

As of right now, no players have been named. However, No. 1, Novak Djokovic, claims he was approached about throwing a match and refused. Like some other top-level players, he does not believe matching fixing is prevalent at a high level, which makes sense, a player at the top level can make way more winning than throwing a match. However, tennis players ranked at lower levels do not earn much (anyone ranked under 200 can make around 40,000 pounds or approximately $56,000) and that's before paying for airfare, hotels, other travel, equipment, training, etc. Tennis rankings are done on a point system. Each tournament gives you points so if you miss a tournament, you miss those points. That means you have to fly all over the world to play in these tournaments. Those costs add up.

Obviously it's easier to fix a match when you are just dealing with one person. And, to be fair to the people watching, or watch-dogging, without concrete proof like texts or phone messages or money changing hands, it's hard to be sure if a match is thrown.

The BBC has fantastic coverage in The Tennis Files and Buzzfeed has The Tennis Racket. I recommend you read both as I believe this is only the beginning of this latest sports scandal, especially if proof comes out that evidence of match fixing has been suppressed. It's one thing for a player to be threatened into throwing a match or financially desperate enough to do so, it's another if the governing tennis bodies knew and let it continue.