Chinese snooker players banned for match-fixing

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Chinese snooker player Yu Delu [File photo: Xinhua]

Chinese snooker player Yu Delu has been banned for ten years and nine months and his compatriot Cao Yupeng for six years after both pleaded guilty to match-fixing, the World Professional Billiards and Snooker Association (WPBSA) announced on Saturday.

WPBSA said in a statement that Yu Delu was found to have engaged in "deliberate and premeditated corruption to secure substantial financial gain for his friends/associates and himself."

"He was involved in match-fixing on five occasions in five tournaments and his activity covers a period of two and a half years, and he did this for substantial reward. He also admitted lying to the investigator, failing to cooperate with the investigation and betting on snooker when prohibited from doing so."

Yu will serve the longest suspension since English player Stephen Lee was given a 12-year ban in 2013.

At hearings that took place on September 21 and November 2, 2018, before a three-person independent tribunal, Cao and Yu admitted breaches of the WPBSA Members Rules.

In the case of Cao, he admitted to fixing the outcome of three matches in 2016 and failing to fully cooperate with the WPBSA inquiry.

Cao will serve a suspension of two and a half years unconditionally. The remaining three and a half years will be suspended provided there is compliance with the written terms agreed between him and the WPBSA to provide significant assistance to the WPBSA in its anti-corruption work, the statement said.

"It is very sad when talented players are attracted to the opportunity to make money from fixing matches," said WPBSA chairman Jason Ferguson.

"The WPBSA has very effective prevention and monitoring processes that protect the sport. Where players ignore this, they risk their careers and they will be caught. Cao Yupeng has shown true remorse and he will assist the WPBSA in player education and in its fight against corruption, which is reflected in his reduced sanction."

Yu Delu admitted fixing five matches:

1. Indian Open qualifiers: bt Martin McCrudden 4-3 (February 12, 2015)

2. Paul Hunter Classic: lost to Dominic Dale 4-1 in Germany (August 29, 2015)

3. Welsh Open: bt Ian Glover 4-3 (January 15, 2016)

4. European Masters qualifiers: lost to Michael Georgiou 4-1 (August 4, 2017)

5. Shanghai Masters: lost to Kurt Maflin 5-3 (November 15, 2017)

Cao Yupeng admitted fixing three matches:

1. Welsh Open: lost to Ali Carter 4-1 (January 15, 2016)

2. Indian Open qualifiers: lost to Stuart Bingham 4-0 (June 30, 2016)

3. UK Championship: lost to Stephen Maguire 6-1 (November 24, 2016)

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