26 Feb 2014

Lee loses first part of his appeal

11:41 am on 26 February 2014

The English snooker player Stephen Lee has lost the first stage of an appeal as he tries to overcome a 12-year ban from the sport.

The 39-year-old was given the suspension by the World Professional Billiards and Snooker Association after being found guilty of seven charges of match-fixing dating back to 2008.

A two-part appeal started today with Lee, who insists he is innocent of all charges, challenging Adam Lewis' suitability as chairman of the independent disciplinary tribunal that hears his case.

Lewis, a senior English lawyer, has also represented Leyton Orient, the third tier football club owned by World Snooker chairman Barry Hearn, in their attempt to secure a judicial review of West Ham being handed the Olympic Stadium tenancy.

Lee claimed in his appeal there was a conflict of interest given Lewis and Hearn have worked together outside snooker.

However, the WPBSA says an independent appeals body had rejected this part of Lee's argument.

Lee will challenge the guilty verdict in the second part of the appeal.