Australia

Watchdog backs new sport integrity body

Sports integrity bodies are being overhauled to stamp out doping, match-fixing and illegal betting. (AAP)

Australia's sports integrity bodies are being overhauled into one single agency in an attempt to stamp out doping, match-fixing and illegal betting.

Australia's anti-doping watchdog has backed plans to establish a powerful national sports integrity agency to stamp out doping, match-fixing and illegal betting.

The single agency, to be known as Sport Integrity Australia will bring together ASADA, the National Integrity of Sport Unit, and the integrity functions of Sport Australia.

A new, national tribunal will also be trialled for two years to hear anti-doping allegations and resolve other sports disputes.

ASADA - which will also receive additional funding for two years in the lead-up to Sport Integrity Australia's formal establishment - has endorsed the changes.

"The new agency provides a one-stop shop for sports integrity, providing easier access for sport but will also enhance the effective coordination and dissemination of intelligence," ASADA CEO David Sharpe said.

"We will no longer be looking at anti-doping in isolation."

Sports Minister Bridget McKenzie on Tuesday listed match-fixing in suburban competitions, the use of supplements by AFL and NRL teams as well as last year's sandpaper scandal that rocked Australian cricket as recent integrity challenges.

"We are determined to prevent incidents like this from happening," she said.

"Australian sports lovers deserve to know that the sport they watch and the teams they support are competing on a level playing field and playing fairly."

The changes are in response to the Wood review, commissioned by the federal government in 2017, which examined sports integrity in Australia.

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