The Weekly with Charlie Pickering is back for 2016, and whilst we can practically hear your muted grunting as you warm your fingers up to hate all over him for another year, the undeniable truth is that the show tackles topics that are otherwise not talked about on Australian TV.
The ABC series unleashed its first episode for the year last night, and the team came out swinging on a hot-button topic: Sports Corruption.
In the wake of the recent bombshell dropped by the BuzzFeed/BBC joint-investigation into widespread match fixing in world tennis, Pickering and the team went further – examining the presence match fixing possesses in Australia, as well as Paul Phua, the key figurehead behind the enormous unregulated gambling market MaxBet.
What The Weekly uncovered during their investigation is extremely eye-opening: Australia’s official response to prevent match-fixing is either wildly underpowered on a Federal Government level, or in the case of the Australian Federal Police, being scaled-back altogether. This, despite Phua – the target of an on-going FBI investigation, a suspected high-ranking member of the highly feared 14K Triad, and the man who allegedly orchestrated power blackouts at English Premier League games to end matches at specific scorelines – having frequently and seemingly freely visited Australia as a high rolling guest of Crown Casino.
Hell, it also discovered that if you live in either Western Australia or Tasmania, you can freely fix any sporting match you want to without fear of legal repercussions: it’s still technically not illegal in those states.
It’s a very well put-together piece. Highly worth your time, regardless of your opinion on Pickering.
By all accounts, 2016 could be a particularly interesting year for Australian sport.
Source: The Weekly/YouTube.