Andy Murray called for greater education and transparency in tennis on the same day Australian Thanasi Kokkinakis revealed he’d been asked to fix matches.
In the wake of the release of a BBC-Buzzfeed report that alleged widespread corruption in the sport, 19-year-old Kokkinakis said he had been offered bribes to lose by “randoms” on social media.
“Not face-to-face but, on social media, you read some stuff on your Facebook page, just these randoms from nowhere saying: ‘I’ll pay you this much to tank the game’,” Kokkinakis told 3AW.
It comes after world No.1 Novak Djokovic confirmed he was offered $200,000 to throw a first-round match almost 10 years ago in St Petersburg.
There is widespread concern about the risk of younger players being targeted by fixers.
“When people come with those sums of money, you know, when you’re that age … I think sometimes people can make mistakes,” Murray said.
“It’s important that from a younger age, players are better educated and are made more aware of what they should do in those situations.
“And how a decision like that can affect your career, can affect the whole sport.
“The more proactive you are with educating young players, the better on matters like this.”
Murray joined Jo-Wilfried Tsonga and Roger Federer in declaring he had never been approached to fix a match.
Kokkinakis believed most professional players had encountered issues surrounding match-fixing.
“I’d say for more than not it comes up,” he said.
“You don’t really take it seriously.
“Obviously, there’s no time for that in this sport – it just corrupts the sport.
“You try and block it out and do what you need to do on court.”
Murray hoped the headlines would help educate players about the issue, with the world No.2 admitting elements of the recent report came as a surprise.
“I didn’t know that so many matches had been flagged up with the betting companies,” he said.
“I wasn’t aware of that. I knew that there had been some but not as many as there were.
“I’m always very curious with that stuff across really all sports … sports could in general be much, much more transparent.”
Murray also took a swipe at Australian Open organisers for breaking with tradition by signing a sponsorship deal with a betting company.
“I’m not really pro-that,” the Scot said.
“I think it’s a little bit hypocritical, really.
“Because I don’t believe the players are allowed to be sponsored by betting companies but then the tournaments are.
“I don’t really understand how it all works. I think it’s a bit strange.”
Kokkinakis is not playing in the Australian Open due to a shoulder injury, while four-time finalist Murray crushed Alexander Zverev 6-1 6-2 6-3 on Tuesday in his opening-round clash.