British snooker star Peter Lines, 51, offered a Chinese opponent outside for ‘a FIGHT for a referee’ after losing a match to him in Leicester last week – and now faces an investigation
- A British snooker star allegedly offered his opponent a fight after he lost to him
- Peter Lines was accused of abusing China’s Xiao Guodong with swear words
- Lines, 51, lost 4-3 to Xiao in a qualifier for next month’s Northern Ireland Open
- The Leeds-born player is also on the board of the world board of snooker
British snooker player Peter Lines is under investigation by the sport’s international governing body after challenging his Chinese opponent to a fight after losing his Northern Ireland Open qualifier.
The 51-year-old England professional player lost 4-3 to Xiao Guodong on Thursday in the qualifier for next month’s tournament and reportedly asked his rival, 32, to step out for ‘a fight for a referee’ after losing in Leicester.
The allegations against Lines, who serves on the board of the World Professional Billiards and Snooker Association (WPBSA) through an acting director role he has held since 2019, were made through a letter from Xiao’s team to the World Snooker Tour (WST).
The letter has since been shared by Xiao on his Sina Weibo page, one of China’s most popular social media websites, with the world number 32 caption: “I don’t make trouble, but I don’t fear trouble either.”
The letter said: “Xiao made us aware that Peter used swear words and that he also threatened Xiao to step outside the arena for a fight in front of the referee, which is unacceptable and quite intimidating for a player who is from another country.
British snooker player Peter Lines allegedly asked his Chinese rival to fight him after a loss
Lines lost to China’s Xiao Guodong and reportedly wanted to ‘fight him in front of a referee’
“In fact, it was the guard who kept Peter from doing worse.”
The letter added that several other snooker players witnessed the abuse, with Wu Yize, Pang Junxu and Elliot Slessor all being named as observers of the alleged incident.
The WST announced in a statement: “WST has received a formal complaint from Xiao Guodong about the behavior of his opponent Peter Lines after their match in the Northern Ireland Open qualifiers.
Lines, 51, is a board member of the governing body of world snooker and is under investigation
“A thorough investigation is now underway and the matter is being taken seriously. Neither WST nor the WPBSA will comment further until the issue is resolved.”
Lines has been a professional snooker player for 30 years and is currently ranked number 95 in the world. He has made just one semi-final at a ranking tournament in his career – at the 2018 Paul Hunter Classic – and has earned £424,224 in career earnings.
The Leeds-born competitor was appointed ‘Player Director’ at the WPBSA because, according to the board’s website, ‘he constantly strives to improve the player experience’.
Lines is number 95 in the world and has been a professional competitor for 30 years
His profile description adds that he has “an enduring enthusiasm for the game” and is popular on the snooker circuit.
Lines’ son Oliver is also a professional snooker player and even ranks higher than his father. The 26-year-old is number 69 in the world, but has only made it to the last 16 in ranking events.
Nicknamed ‘Little Kelly’ on the track, Xiao reached the finals of the 2013 Shanghai Masters and the 2017 Shoot Out and is a two-time gold medalist at the Asian Indoor Games.