Northern Ireland darts player banned for match-fixing

30th November 2020 9:21 am GMT

Northern Irish professional darts player Kyle Mckinstry has been banned from the sports for eight and a half years after being found guilty of fixing two matches earlier this year.

An investigation was launched by the Darts Regulation Authority in May after the International Betting Integrity Association (IBIA) uncovered suspicious betting activity during McKinstry’s matches against David Evans and Wessel Nijman.

The investigation was aided by Sportradar Integrity Services, the British Gambling Commission's Sports Betting Intelligence Unit, the Malta Gaming Authority and the Gibraltar Gambling Regulator. 

At a hearing of the DRA Disciplinary Committee in October, McKinstry admitted to fixing his match against Evans but denied fixing any aspect of his match with Nijman, as well as the charge of failing to cooperate with the DRA by not producing his itemised phone bills as required.

The Committee has now released its findings and found all three of the charges against McKinstry proven. As a result, he received a six and a half year ban for fixing two matches, and a further 18 month ban for failing to provide his phone bill.

Nijman was banned for five years in October for fixing his own match against Evans during the same event in May.

“Betting operators want the markets they offer to be considered clean and not subject to manipulation,” said Gibraltar Gambling Commissioner Andrew Lyman. “That is why they report suspicious betting patterns to regulators and the International Betting Integrity Association. Lockdown provided its own challenges in that data providers covered less elite sport and more fringe sporting activity where there is an obvious integrity risk.

“Match fixing is something which undermines the fundamental appeal of sport; that being the uncertainty of outcome. It is in the wider public interest for gambling regulators and the industry to spend time and resource on combatting the corruption of sport by participants for betting purposes.”

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