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Maguire and Burnett escape prosecution in snooker match-fixing probe

Snooker authorities promise independent investigation into irregular betting patterns during 2008 UK Championship match.

Image: Nick Potts/PA Wire/Press Association Images

SNOOKER PLAYERS STEPHEN MAGUIRE and Jamie Burnett will not face criminal charges for match-fixing after the Scottish Crown Counsel found insufficient evidence to support their investigation into irregular betting patterns during a 2008 UK Championship match.

However, the pair are not yet in the clear with the World Professional Billiards and Snooker Association (WPBSA) promising to conduct their own independent inquiry into the matter.

Bookmakers alerted the authorities after an unusually large number of bets were placed on a correct scoreline of 9-3 when the pair met back in December 2008. Suspicions were further heightened after Burnett missed a seemingly-straightforward black in the 12th frame which would have seen his deficit cut to 8-4.

Concluding an investigation which spanned over two years, police confirmed yesterday that they would not be pursuing a case against the two players.

“I’m very pleased that there is no evidence to support legal action against the two players,” said World Snooker chairman Barry Hearn who welcomed yesterday’s announcement.

Though he promised that the WPBSA would look into the matter itself, he strongly hinted that no further action would be taken against either player.

“With our disciplinary head on we will review any evidence [the police] have,” Hearn said, “but clearly [we will review it] in the light that it was nearly three years ago and also that they have decided that there was no action to be taken.”

Read more in today’s Daily Mail >

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Niall Kelly

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