Pie Eating Bet Lands Sutton United’s Wayne Shaw in Hot Water

Wayne Shaw, the larger than life Sutton United goalkeeper, may have bitten off more than he can chew after he tucked into a pie during his side’s FA Cup tie against Arsenal.

Wayne Shaw eating pie bet.

Sutton United’s Wayne Shaw takes a bite out of Sun Bets’ profits after eating a pie during his team’s FA Cup clash against Arsenal. (Image: surreycomet.co.uk)

Leading up to the FA Cup fifth round match, Sutton reserve keeper Shaw hit the headlines for his less than athletic appearance. Weighing more than the average footballer, Shaw admitted that he was a fan of pies.

Naturally, with the Sutton vs. Arsenal match being the standout match of the fifth round, one UK bookmaker decided to capitalise on the opportunity with a novelty bet. On top of asking football fans to name a “more iconic duo” than Shaw and pies, Sun Bets set the following betting line: Wayne Shaw to eat a pie live on air @ 8/1.

Printing the bet in The Sun newspaper as well as plastering it across its website, Sun Bets reportedly received hundreds of wagers on the offer.

As predicted, Shaw showed off his love of pies during the match.

With Sutton United 2-0 down and unable to make anymore substitutions, Shaw knew he wasn’t going to get in the game.

The Pie Eating Bet Everyone Knew About

Having heard about the bet before the game, he went into the kitchen to retrieve a meat and potato pie he’d prepared for the occasion. With the game coming to a close, Shaw stood up and began eating just as the cameras panned around the ground.

With that, everyone that had placed a bet on him to eat a pie during the game won. However, Shaw’s willingness to oblige the bookmaker’s novelty bet may have landed him in trouble with the FA and the UK Gambling Commission (UKGC).

 As part of the FA’s commitment to stamp out match fixing, any instances where players are involved in betting activity, either directly or indirectly, is cause for an investigation. In this instance, Shaw admitted that he not only knew about the bet, but that some of friends of his had money on the outcome.

The FA has taken this as a sign that he may have deliberately ate the pie in a bid to unfairly influence the betting market.

In addition to the FA’s investigation, the UKGC has written to Sun Bets. Asking for an account of the situation, the UKGC believes the stunt may have contravened the integrity clause written into each operator’s iGaming licence.

At this stage neither ruling body has taken any action. However, Shaw has since handed in his resignation. After the story hit the headlines, Shaw felt as if he’d brought Sutton United’s name into disrepute.

With this in mind, he spoke to manager Paul Doswell on the phone and agreed to leave the club. The resignation has since been accepted by the chairman and Shaw will no longer play for Sutton United.

Despite no longer being associated with the football team, the FA is still looking into the incident.

UKGC to Focus on Customers in 2017

In other UK gambling news this week, the chief executive of the UKGC, Sarah Harrison, has outlined her vision for 2017. Speaking at the Regulatory Briefing conference at ICE Vox, Harrison noted the recent shift in power between public and government and suggested that businesses need to do more for customers.

Aiming to continue the UKGC’s mission to become the gold standard for iGaming regulation, Harrison said the regulatory body would focus on the following areas in the coming months:

1. Oversee the publication of a forward strategy that will guide the Commission’s work over the next three years.

2. Building consumer trust and confidence.

3. Improving the way the Commission works.

4. Developing advice to the Government on the gambling review.

5. Compiling a review of the online market.

To help achieve these goals, the UKGC will not only work with betting operators, but regulatory partners in Europe and beyond.

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