Bookie snubs Hibs fan over Leigh Griffiths ‘goal’

Angela Shortel. Picture: Scott Louden
Angela Shortel. Picture: Scott Louden
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A HIBS fan has been left feeling robbed in more ways than one after a bookmaker refused to pay out on Leigh Griffiths’ controversial disallowed goal – despite its rivals rewarding like-minded punters.

Angela Shortel, 46, from Leith, had placed a £100 bet at odds of 11/2 on the striker opening the scoring and the Easter Road outfit going on to win Sunday’s derby.

The strike by Leigh Griffiths should have been ruled a goal as it crossed the line by some distance

The strike by Leigh Griffiths should have been ruled a goal as it crossed the line by some distance

Griffiths’ late free-kick crashed off the underside bar and bounced at least a yard over the line before being cleared. But neither the referee Euan Norris nor linesman Raymond Whyte gave the goal and the game ended 0-0.

The mother-of-four had placed her wager at William Hill’s Groathill Road North shop on Friday afternoon and had hoped for a £650 payday which she intended to put towards a family holiday.

Several bookmakers such as Ladbrokes, McBookie.com and BetVictor all paid out on the goal, however William Hill has refused.

Lifelong Hibby Angela, who attended the game with her 14-year-old son, Lewis, said: “I think it’s poor form on the part of William Hill. It was clearly a goal even if the linesman never flagged. All the other bookmakers played fair and paid out.

“We were actually sitting in the stand directly behind the goal and when it went in everyone jumped up and began celebrating. I couldn’t believe it when it was disallowed.

“I’ve been robbed twice on this both inside and outside the ground. Usually I would never put on a bet and certainly not this amount, but in the run-up to the game we’d been playing so well I had a real feeling that Griffiths would score and we’d go on to win.”

The shop worker added: “Between the linesman and William Hill I haven’t slept since, I’ve been so angry about the decision.”

A William Hill spokesman revealed that the firm only pays out on the official result issued by the Press Association. The bookmaker did pay out on the correct 0-0 score and the “no goalscorer” market.

Griffiths’ goal-that-wasn’t has reignited the long-running debate regarding goal-line technology and its adoption by the SFA.

While the English FA is 
preparing to roll out state-of-the-art systems in 20 stadiums in time for next season, the SFA has admitted the cash just isn’t there to do the same.

SFA head of referee operations John Fleming said: “The installation of each system will cost a six-figure sum on top of any maintenance costs.

“That would make it prohibitive for the respective league bodies in Scotland to consider.”