Badminton-Russia's Khakimov banned for five years over betting, fixing offences

·1-min read

(Reuters) - Russian doubles badminton player Nikita Khakimov has received a five-year ban after being found guilty of offences relating to "betting, wagering and irregular match results", the Badminton World Federation (BWF) said on Wednesday.

The BWF opened an investigation against Khakimov after obtaining a statement from a whistleblower, who claimed the shuttler had approached him to manipulate match results at the European Teams Championships held in Feb. 2018.

An independent panel found Khakimov to be in breach of BWF's integrity regulations, including approaching a player and offering money to manipulate a match, betting on badminton games and "deliberately destroying evidence of a corruption offence to conceal from the BWF".

Khakimov, 32, was part of the Russian men's team that won the bronze medal at the 2020 European Team Championships.

The panel has decided to not impose a fine on Khakimov, saying the length of the suspension would effectively end his playing career.

"As badminton was his only purported source of income, the suspension would deprive him of the possibility to earn money from his chosen profession," the panel added.

(Reporting by Hardik Vyas in Bengaluru; Editing by Christian Radnedge)