Fake Indian Premier League Dupes Russian Bettors With Staged Cricket Matches
Robert Cianflone/Getty Images. Pictured: The IPL’s Chennai Super Kings, who were impersonated by a fake cricket league.
A crazy story emerged from India on Monday, as it was revealed that an operation to broadcast and produce fake “IPL” cricket matches to attract wagers from Russian bettors was shut down.
The IPL is the Indian Premier League, a prominent cricket league that is based out of India. The IPL, however, finished its season three weeks ago.
That didn’t stop Russian bettors from wagering on staged games that were produced by an Indian village, according to The Times of India.
The village went to extreme lengths to broadcast games, attracting fake players, a fake umpire and even a broadcaster to go with HD cameras. Those involved with the action wore jerseys of numerous real IPL teams, including the Chennai Super Kings, Mumbai Indians and Gujarat Titans.
Russian bettors used a telegram to place wagers, and piped in crowd noise apparently made the matches look realistic enough.
It wasn’t until the police found out that there was a problem. The league played for weeks before being found out.
According to the report, the camerawork would refrain from revealing the faces of players or specific actions.
Because of the live betting that was coming in, operators would signal to the batsmen and umpire what to do, and they would act out the result.
To get the whole operation in motion, a man worked at a Russian pub that held workshops for bettors on cricket. He then got in contact with a resident that helped orchestrate the ordeal.
This isn’t the first time gamblers have wagered on sporting events that didn’t take place.
In 2015, a VICE story detailed how Belarusian Premier League games and exhibition soccer games were wagered on without actually taking place, though official results were reported.
The story noted the difficulty that bookmakers and operators have in instantly identifying such events.
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