Higgins suspended, Mooney resigns

24 hours on and I am still quite astonished by this story but the developments continue to come as world number 1 in waiting John Higgins has been suspended from all WPBSA tournaments pending an immediate enquiry and Pat Mooney has resigned from his position on the board…

A short statement produced on World Snooker’s website reads as follows:

“In relation to recent newspaper reports Barry Hearn, the WPBSA Chairman has released the following statement:

Pat Mooney has resigned from the WPBSA Board and his resignation has been accepted, with immediate effect.

John Higgins has been suspended from future WPBSA tournaments, pending an immediate enquiry.

The WPBSA enquiry will be headed by David Douglas and will be carried out with the utmost urgency. There is a process to follow in accordance with WPBSA rules, this process has been initiated. This matter has brought the very fabric of the game into question and the strongest possible message needs to be sent out that this behaviour has no part to play in our game and will not be tolerated. Any wrong doing will be severely dealt with.”

Bearing in mind the circumstances it is hard to see what else the governing body could have done and I must say that I feel that their reaction to this incredible story has been from an outside point of view absolutely first rate. They have acted swiftly and firmly and hopefully they will continue to deal with the matter in such a manner.

Whilst driving over to the Crucible today I heard Steve Davis speaking about the scandal and it was clear that he was as astonished and disappointed as the rest of us. He spoke about a dark day for snooker and how the sport would now need Barry Hearn more than ever, a view that I find hard to disagree with.

Barry himself has now also confirmed that he has spoken to a tearful John, who maintains his innocence concerning this whole affair. You can read quotes from Barry here.