Russian tennis player Yana Sizikova has been arrested at the French Open on suspicion of match-fixing.
The French Tennis Federation confirmed that the tennis star had been arrested and Shamil Tarpischev, the President of the Russian Tennis Federation, also informed the RIA news agency Sizikova was being held in custody.
“We have not received any documents (regarding the case), so it’s difficult to make an assessment of what has happened,” Tarpischev reportedly said.
The 26-year-old lost her first round double’s match alongside partner Ekaterina Alexandrova to Australian duo Ajla Tomljanović and Storm Sanders, before the arrest was confirmed.
According to German news outlet Die Welt, the French police opened an investigation into the alleged corruption and fraud after Sizikova and partner Madison Brengle fell to defeat at the hands of Andreea Mitu and Patricia Maria Tig, who won in straight sets at the Roland Garros.
However, the fifth game of the second set in particular caught the eye of authorities when Sizikova was said to have made two double-faults on serve.
Bookmakers informed relevant authorities of ‘suspicious betting stakes’, with ‘hundred of thousands of euros’ allegedly bet on the fixture, leading to the launch of the investigation into ‘organised gang fraud’ and ‘active and passive sports corruption’.
This year’s edition of the French Open has been shrouded in controversy after Naomi Osaka withdrew from the tournament, following her refusal to to fulfil post-match press duties and opening up about her ongoing battle with her mental health.
Despite the Japanese tennis star’s exit from the tournament, a number of Osaka’s sponsors have offered messages of support to the athlete, including Nike, Mastercard and Nissin Foods, whom the 23-year-old all maintains endorsement deals with.