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KBO calls in police after player approached by fixer

The Korea Baseball Organization (KBO) said Thursday it has asked the police to investigate a tip that a player-turned-broker has approached pitchers to fix matches.

In a press statement, the KBO said it received the anonymous tip in early May that the broker, a 20-something undrafted former player, was on the prowl and was looking to engage pitchers in fixing schemes.

And after its own preliminary investigation, the KBO asked the police on May 18 to launch its own probe. The KBO said that the teams have finished their interviews with players and haven’t found any problems related to match fixing. The league office added it can’t comment further on which player and club are suspected of involvement, since the police are now looking into the matter.

According to multiple club officials earlier Thursday, the KBO has alerted all 10 teams that the broker has proposed fixing deals to some pitchers, whereby they could receive lump sums of cash for issuing walks.

Jeong Geum-jo, deputy secretary-general of the KBO and head of its Clean Baseball Center, said players have spoken with their teams’ respective Clean Baseball Center representatives regarding their knowledge of the broker and whether they have been approached by that person.

“Our players are well aware of the pitfalls of match fixing,” Jeong added. “We’re trying to confirm rumors of possible match-fixing attempts.”


South and North to compete together at judo contest

South Korea and North Korea will form a joint judo team to compete in an upcoming East Asian competition, Seoul’s judo governing body said Thursday.

The Korea Judo Association (KJA) said the two sides agreed to field a unified team at the 11th East Asian Judo Championships, although details need to be further discussed. The East Asian Judo Championships will be held in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia, from Saturday to Sunday, featuring eight nations, including Japan and China.

The KJA said the South will send college judokas selected by the Korea University Judo Federation to the East Asian Judo Championships.

“Our team departed for Mongolia today,” the KJA said. “Once they arrive, we’ll talk with the North Koreans and finish discussions on the joint team and will compete in the tournament.”

The KJA said Mongolian organizers and officials from the East Asian judo body first proposed the idea of a joint Korean team in this year’s competition. South Korea has in the past sent college judokas to the East Asian Judo Championships, giving opportunities to prospects and promising athletes. A KJA official said that this year it was relatively easy to form a joint team since the nation’s top judokas are not on the team after long trials.

“We have yet to finalize how we should operate this unified team,” the KJA official said. “We’ll first join hands with North Koreans in the team event, but we can also compete together in individual events as Team Korea.”

South Korea and North Korea competed together in women’s ice hockey at the PyeongChang Winter Olympics.

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