Head of tournament development about support for athletes and fair play

Valerii Ozarenko, Head of Tournament Development at the Setka Cup, shared his view special for the Sports Integrity Initiative to explain how the Setka Cup team works with the internal sports community and prevents match-fixing.

Mr. Ozarenko is a former table tennis player and a well-known member of the Ukrainian sports community. Together with the team of 100+ experts, they are responsible for the tournament organization processes, technical equipment of arenas, conditions necessary for athletes’ training and competitions, risk management, and support of fair play. 

In his column, Valerii Ozarenko also remembered the 2020 year when the tournaments achieved international recognition. Together with growing matches, extending the operational team and sports community, attention among fans are also on the rise. Meanwhile, the issue of supporting athletes and preventing match-fixing become more important while scammers also became fans of these commercial tournaments because of rescheduled or cancelled other big sports events.

Below, please, see the short version of the opinion about internal procedures and supporting the sports community. To read the full opinion, please, follow the link:

INTERNAL POLICIES, CODES OF CONDUCT AND FRAUD DETECTION

The Setka Cup does not tolerate fraud or corruption by staff or related third parties. Each player of our tournaments must agree to the internal policies and the Code of Conduct. And the last one is an internal document of a number of provisions relating to the obligations and restrictions during participation in tournaments and the athlete’s responsibility for possible, intentional/not violation of principles of fair play. Moreover, all participants of our table tennis tournaments in Ukraine must agree to the Ethics and Fair Play Committee Agreement of the Ukrainian Table Tennis Federation (UTTF). 

This Committee also reserves the right to disqualify both players and referees and match organizers who violate the principle of fairness in sporting competitions. All participants and referees are acknowledged about potential risks and understand that they can lose their reputation and ratings and even receive a lifetime ban for being involved in match-fixing. 

Our players, judges, and staff members are required to be watchful for fraud, corruption, or any suspicious behavior and report it to appropriate management. If we receive such reports, the standard procedure of internal investigation begins. The process includes various methods and procedures. Regarding table tennis tournaments, such a procedure also involves the UTTF Ethics and Fair Play Committee representatives. 

We have a strong team, including security specialists, responsible for detecting and investigating suspicious activity during each game. We also have external professional support from our partner BETER that has a risk management system that detects and prevents fraud. We, on our side, pay huge attention to the tournaments’ conditions and provide complex support for our sportspeople.

HOW SPORTS COMMUNITY HELPS TO PREVENT MATCH-FIXING

Each athlete is an integral member of the sports community. Every day we do our utmost to support and develop our players, maintain a safe and comfortable environment for them and take into consideration all their wishes to provide them with valuable opportunities.

We created break rooms where participants can relax and watch online games of other players and opponents. Moreover, we have unique media channels, including Setka Cup TV, where we publish news, match highlights, lifehacks, and interviews with our participants and representatives of the sports community. It helps us to bring sportspeople together and further develop our community.

In addition to our fraud prevention instruments and techniques, we also employ an internal admission system for athletes. That means that new athletes can enter our tournaments only after receiving a personal recommendation from a current participant. 

When you are inside this community, you constantly communicate with other athletes and understand how indispensable cohesion and trust are. This concept is one of the best prevention against fraud and unfair play.

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