World Snooker set up players' hotline
Published 12/11/2010 | 13:16
World Snooker will make a confidential hotline to report suspicious activities available to players from this evening as they aim to tackle corruption in the sport.
The WPBSA will hold a meeting with its member players at the European Tour Championship event in Germany today to brief them on the initiative, which has been set-up with the help of the newly-formed Integrity Unit.
The move comes after former world number one John Higgins was found guilty of failing to report an illegal approach to lose frames following the undercover News of the World sting during the World Championship in April.
Higgins returns to action for the first time after his subsequent ban in Germany today.
"It is a hotline and e-mail service for the players that is anonymous or otherwise," WPBSA disciplinary chief David Douglas told Press Association Sport.
"The players can use it to report suspicious activities or to inquire about information about the rules and regulations.
"It is a case of the WPBSA being pro-active and making sure we are not arrogant to think that corruption is not a part, or could not be a part, of the sport."
He added: "We saw with the Pakistan wicketkeeper (Zulqarnain Haider) in cricket recently that he had the information, but he didn't know what to do with it.
"We are setting this up as a system that the players can trust and which will provide an avenue for them to offer such information.
"We will run through the details of the hotline with the players today, tell them the numbers and e-mail address, and also brief them on the rules and regulations. It will be a watershed meeting in terms of discussing those things with them."
Douglas, who will head today's meeting, said the WPBSA Integrity Unit would be tasked with pooling the information into a database, which they will use in consultation with gambling associations and betting exchanges.
"It is a secure a database of information. It is an important piece of intelligence that we can utilise," he added.
"It will allow us to view patterns and other matters in conjunction with those organisations to give us a better understanding of what is going on.
"Then the Integrity Unity will report to the board.
"It is just a case of being vigilant and remaining pro-active, so that we are fully aware if something like this is happening, rather than it being exposed in places like the newspapers."