In a continuation of the crackdown of corruption in Tennis, Albina Khabibulina and Ksenia Palkina have been provisionally suspended from the sport by the Tennis Integrity Unit (TIU) after they were both found to be in breach of the Tennis Anti-Corruption Programme.
Khabibulina and Palkina were suspended with immediate effect by independent Anti-corruption Hearing Officer (AHO) Prof Richard H. McLaren, after she was found to be in breach of Section 3 of the Tennis Anti-Corruption Programme.
Under section 3 of the Anti-Corruption Programme, the ruling details that a player may be provisionally suspended if the following conditions are satisfied: “a Covered Person has (i) failed to comply with a Demand or (ii) delayed or obstructed, without reasonable justification, compliance with a Demand or purported to comply with a Demand through the provision of any object or information that has been tampered with, damaged, disabled or otherwise altered from its original state;
“(i) there is a likelihood that the Covered Person has committed a Corruption Offense punishable by permanent ineligibility; (ii) in the absence of a Provisional Suspension, the integrity of tennis would be undermined; and (iii) the harm resulting from the absence of a Provisional Suspension outweighs the hardship of the Provisional Suspension on the Covered Person.”
As part of the suspension, the two will be prohibited from competing in or attending any sanctioned tennis event organised or recognised by the governing bodies of the sport.
In recent months, the TIU has carried out further investigations into the prevention of corruption within the sport, having issued a fine and a suspension to players found to be in contravention of regulations earlier this year.
Issuing a $51,250 (£41,000) fine to former world No 50 Anna Tatishvili and a nine month suspension to German tennis player Osman Torski, the TIU focused upon enforcing the Tennis Anti-Corruption Program (TACP).