The WPBSA has today released this statement concerning Irish snooker player Leo Fernandez:
After a hearing before the WPBSA Disciplinary Committee that took place on 24th June 2016 Leo Fernandez admitted to a breach of 220.127.116.11 of the WPBSA Members Rules:
18.104.22.168 to fix or contrive, or to be a party to any effort to fix or contrive, the result, score, progress, conduct or any other aspect of the Tour and/or any Tournament or Match;
This related to suspicious betting on who would commit the first foul in the first frame in his match with Gary Wilson at the World Championship Qualifiers at Ponds Forge in Sheffield on 6th April 2016.
At an early stage Leo Fernandez fully admitted his involvement in delivering the foul shot in the first frame of the match in question for other persons to make money through betting. As a condition of his sentence he has pledged to assist the WPBSA in its anti-corruption education work to try and help other players avoid being drawn into match manipulation.
On Tuesday 5th July the WPBSA Disciplinary Committee issued their decision on sanction: Leo Fernandez is suspended from the sport of snooker for a period of 15 months. The suspension will run from 27th May 2016 when the interim suspension was imposed by the WPBSA. Therefore Leo Fernandez will not be eligible to participate in snooker before 27th August 2017.
He has been ordered to pay a contribution towards the WPBSA costs of £2,000.
The WPBSA take allegations of match fixing very seriously and in this case worked closely with the betting industry, the Sports Betting Intelligence Unit (SBIU) of the GB Gambling Commission and the International Centre for Sport Security (ICSS). This case is further evidence of our uncompromising approach to dealing with such issues.
For the ruling of the Disciplinary Committee on finding and sanction see here.
Jason Ferguson the Chairman of the WPBSA said: “This demonstrates our commitment to ensuring that all aspects of matches in World Snooker events are competed in a fair and honest manner. Working closely with our many international partners, the WPBSA has developed the strongest anti-corruption strategies available in sport today. Leo Fernandez had just qualified to play on the WSL tour this season as a full professional and by his actions he has thrown away this opportunity.”