The police have been invited to study the allegations of illegal gambling in the basketball league. Iain Potter, the New Zealand chief executive, confirmed that the police are looking into matters of illegality in a recent game. Potter further said that Basketball New Zealand was warned recently, of an occurrence of inappropriate betting activity associated with the national league game. It is undoubtedly essential to protect the integrity of New Zealand’s favourite sport, and the matter should be looked into carefully.
The chief executive referred the allegation to the New Zealand Police, who agreed to probe into the issue further, to get into the bottom of the matter.
The New Zealand Police released a statement afterwards and confirmed that they are looking into the allegation. The police seem to be conscious of the effect of match-fixing, and other correlated activities, on the integrity of all New Zealand sports.
The league itself was in the midst of investigation on a game at the end of July, which was the game of Supercity Rangers versus the Taranaki Mountain Airs. When there were just two seconds to play late in the game, Airs scored a late basket, cutting the lead by nine points.
Afterwards, Rangers took some time out and hit a last-minute three-pointer, which pushed to a 12 points lead. A ticket betting option saw gamblers betting on the team to win by 11 points and above. According to the logic, a team in such a position is likely to defend, and run down the clock, instead of rushing for the last minute point.
The Rangers coach, Jeff Green denied the allegation and insisted that his team was trying to give a departing player a final shot at the score and that the charges were weak and vague. However, the police and other stakeholders, are looking into the issue seriously, and a verdict will be made soon.