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Stephen Lee 'finished' in snooker after failed appeal

Updated: Friday, 16 May 2014 08:09 | Comments

Stephen Lee is 'finished' in snooker according to Nigel Mawer
Stephen Lee is 'finished' in snooker according to Nigel Mawer

Stephen Lee is "finished" with snooker after having his 12-year ban for match-fixing upheld.

That is the opinion of Nigel Mawer, chairman of the World Professional Billiards and Snooker Association's disciplinary committee, who believes Lee is highly unlikely to launch a comeback.

Lee has been barred from the game until October 12, 2024, meaning he will be 50 years of age by the time he is eligible to return.

Mawer told Sky Sports News: "There's a degree of sadness because Stephen Lee was a fantastic player and he's thrown it all away through greed and getting involved in match-fixing.

"Basically, as a result of that, he's now finished with snooker. He's banned now until he's 50 years of age, he's exhausted all avenues of appeal.

"But it is with sadness. It's harmful to any sport when there are upheld allegations of match-fixing.

"We do have a seniors tour and there are options for people who are older to play snooker if they are good enough but if you've been away from the sport for that length of time, I think it would be very difficult for him to re-engage."

Lee, a five-time ranking tournament winner and former world number five, had challenged the findings of a 2013 tribunal which found him guilty of fixing seven games in 2008 and 2009.

They included deliberate defeats to Ken Doherty and Marco Fu at the 2008 Malta Cup, and agreeing to lose the first frame against Stephen Hendry and Mark King at the 2008 UK Championship.

But Lee's appeal was thrown out by Nicholas Stewart QC, who also increased Lee's original costs order from £40,000 to £75,000.

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