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Tennis Australia president Steve Healy wants spot betting banned

Tennis Australia president Steve Healy wants ‘spot betting’ banned from the sport.

But he has hit back at suggestions it’s ’embarrassing’ for the Australian Open to be sponsored by betting agency William Hill while the sport is engulfed by allegations of match-fixing.

Healy told Neil Mitchell he’d ‘prefer’ bets weren’t taken on single points and games, but said it wasn’t up to him to make a decision.

‘It’s something the government needs to have a look at and make a decision,’ he said on 3AW Mornings.

‘We’ll support anything that happens there.’

Healy also shot back at media reports suggesting the Victorian Government was unhappy about the new partnership with William Hill.

‘We’ve spoken to the government this morning and what has been written there is totally incorrect,’ he said.

The betting agency has since demanded a front-page retraction from the Herald Sun over the claim.

‘William Hill is one of the largest and most respected wagering operators in the world and takes its good name and brand reputation extremely seriously,’ a company statement read.

‘It is also the second time in three months the bookmaker has had to contact the Herald Sun’s Editor regarding their reporting of the matter.

‘William Hill has received confirmation from the Australian Communications and Media Authority that they have referred to the Australian Federal Police a complaint about William Hill’s in-play service on December 24, as referenced in the article.

‘We also note that no formal investigation has been undertaken by the Australian Federal Police, let alone any determination that the service is in breach of the law.’

But Neil Mitchell said it was reasonable to be concerned by the sponsorship.

Neil Mitchell: ‘Isn’t a bit embarrassing that one of your major sponsors is doing this (taking bets)?’

Steve Healy: ‘The corruption match-fixing issue is quite different and should be separated from what is a marketing partnership with William Hill, in what is a legal activity in Australia.’

Neil Mitchell: ‘Yes, but you wouldn’t have a brothel sponsor. That’s a legal operation in Victoria, as well.’

Click PLAY below to hear Steve Healy go head-to-head with Neil Mitchell.

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