Unione Rugby Capitolina, Sportradar and Lottomatica together to defend the Integrity of Sport

Oval, like the room in which all the most important world decisions are made. Oval, like the stadiums where sports’ passions are experienced every day all over the world. Oval, like the ball of a discipline which carries values that have changed sport: rugby.

Nobility, loyalty, sense of responsibility, competitiveness, respect of the ones opponent, courage and determination. These are only some of the values in the day of a rugby player, a disciplined field with exceptionally rich virtues and an example of loyalty in sport.

Defending the values of sport means tackling match-fixing, a real threat for the integrity and credibility of sport. Rugby has decided to go on the field precisely to fight and prevent match-fixing, to defend its positive values.

This project started today at the Unione Rugby Capitolina: it is the first step of a new experience for rugby in Europe. It has been dedicated to the training, education and prevention of the professional and under-18 players, managers, and staff. The project aims at spreading and reinforcing awareness connected to the risks and dangers linked to fraud within sport. This criminal activity takes advantage of new technologies and of betting opportunities and techniques in the world. At the end of the training workshop, URC received Sportradar’s “Anti-fraud Certificate”, which assures against match-fixing risks. This is a starting point for other clubs, who want to follow the same path. “With this new project – explains the Chairman, Giorgio Vaccaro – URC is continuing to educate its young athletes”.

According to the “mission” of the Roman club, the objective continues to be the personal growth of its players while sharing values. This season has been a turning point in every sense for the Young athletes’ lifestyle. “Competitive education – states Vaccaro – also means making the athletes understand that raising their own limits to obtain the maximum individual performance starts when they are children and continues after adulthood: it is a never ending path”.

This is the direction in which athletes of the past and present are going, like Christian Panucci, Fabio Capello’s national Russian team’s current assistant coach and Giovanbattista Venditti the Italian’s national rugby team’s right wing who have in the last months carried out meetings with the under eighteen rugby players. “The match-fixing initiative – Vaccaro concludes – completes our internal training path and will involve not only the young, but also the managers and directors”.

The training course has been carried out by Sportradar, world leader for its match-fixing prevention and contrasting activities. They have shown and discussed with the team real world cases and situations, at an international level, while showing images and video footage connected to rigged sporting events as well as technological systems being used to contrast match-fixing. The objective is to raise the athletes, coaches and sporting managers’ awareness and knowledge to prevent a risk of contamination.

“Match-fixing has become a global problem which is rapidly expanding, nobody can feel immune from it and it represents a serious threat to many sports” Marcello Presilla International Integrity Manager of Sportradar AG. “We already have a successfully platform in Italy amongst other European and International countries. Our training and prevention objective is to make everyone at all levels of the game be more aware of the betting industry, the dangers, risk and consequences that surrounds match-fixing. Sportradar has been working alongside many sporting federations and leagues for many years to help protect their most valuable asset: Integrity. We are particularly proud to extend our rugby portfolio and launch this initiative at the very heart of Italian rugby.

This event would not have been possible without the support from our partners Lottomatica, who are the world’s largest operator of lotteries. The betting operators are the first to find themselves damaged by this kind of criminal activity, as they are amongst the main targets of sporting fraud, as well as suffering serious repercussions in terms of image.

“The betting industry has undergone rapid evolution in the global market. Since 2007, Lottomatica has been operating in this market with the Better brand and has devoted the greatest effort to provide its contribution to Monopoli for the work they do to defend and safeguard the legality of the sector in Italy”, Ludovico Calvi, CEO of Lottomatica Scommesse, said. “To combat match fixing, monitoring systems are important, and cooperation is also essential among the game’s regulatory bodies, concession holders, public authorities, police forces of Member States and sports federations. We intend to continue and strengthen our contribution to tackling this phenomenon”.

Today Unione Rugby Capitolina, Sportradar, and Lottomatica-Gtech have created a united front for legality, which effectively contrasts sports fraud.

MODERATOR: Alessandro Cini

  • Ludovico Calvi, Head of Betting, Lottomatica-Gtech
  • Giorgio Vaccaro, Presidente, Unione Rugby Capitolina
  • Roberto Fanelli, Director Gaming and Betting, AAMS
  • Alessandro Petrolini, Commissioner Betting Integrity Police Deparment
  • Marcello Presilla, International Integrity Manager, Sportradar AG


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