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Last Updated: Monday, 27 August 2007, 20:54 GMT 21:54 UK
Davydenko faces betting inquiry
Nikolay Davydenko
Davydenko retired from his match in the third set
Nikolay Davydenko will have to answer questions in connection with the gambling scandal surrounding his recent defeat by Martin Vassallo Arguello.

The world number four withdrew from the match in Poland earlier this month when losing 2-6 6-3 2-1 because of injury.

Online betting exchange Betfair reported concerns of irregular gambling patterns to tennis's governing body.

Davydenko, who denies any involvement, will be questioned by ATP investigators after the China Open next month.

The Russian, who beat Jesse Levine in the first round of the US Open on Monday, admitted the issue had become an unwelcome distraction.

"I've never gambled in my life and I don't know any guys who do," he said.

"It's difficult - it's like mentally you are tired, not physically. It would be good for me to take a rest and nobody hear nothing about me.

"It's pretty tough for me in this position now. Everybody sees I am like bad guy who is gambling. I've never done anything in my life like this.

"I need to concentrate now on tennis because I have every week a tournament.

It's not so much the amount that was bet, it's the prices at which they were bet

Betfair spokesman

"I try to say every week I don't do anything like this. I never did. How many weeks will I have to answer questions? How many months? Maybe all this year."

The 26-year-old had been struggling with a foot injury, losing his first match at three events in a row before managing a first-round victory in the tournament in Poland.

About 3.4m had been bet on his second-round match against Arguello - 10 times the amount typical for a match of this kind, distorting the market, and Betfair refused to pay out on the match.

Speaking on 3 August, Davydenko's agent Eckhard Oehms said his client was innocent of any involvement in the alleged betting scam.

"Betting is not part of his striving for titles. Nikolay won quite a few titles last year," Oehms told BBC Radio 5live.

"He's fighting hard to come to the same form this year. He still has a bit to make up in terms of Masters and Grand Slams but the betting, I can rule that out totally."

Betfair spokesman Mark Davies told BBC Radio 5live: "It's not so much the amount that was bet, it's the prices at which they were bet.

"Davydenko won the first set but during the course of winning it, his price drifted out not in. That doesn't strike us as a normal betting pattern.

"We have an understanding with the ATP that we can share information with them so that they can know exactly what bets were taking place and from who, so we'll be liaising with them.

"We have suspended payouts and we will consider what we can do in order to ensure fairness and transparency."



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