Pals thought they’d won £23,400 bet – but bookies won’t pay out after ‘human error’
Oct. 09, 2019
TWO rugby fans were left fuming after being denied £23,400 despite their bet coming in.
William Hill cited "human error" for allowing the pals to stick their money on an ambitious double, which came in.
Salford Red Devils fans Gary Smeaton and Kris Shenton contributed £50 each together to put a £100 accumulator on.
They backed their Red Devils side to finish inside the Super League's top five at 8-1.
And the pair doubled up the bet by tipping 25-1 outsider Jackson Hastings to be named the Super League's Man of Steel, the award for the player of the season.
Incredibly, both bets came in as Hastings helped the Greater Manchester-based club to third in the division and won the individual gong on Sunday.
But the friends' joy was cut short in devastating fashion - as the bookmakers decided the bet should not have been placed at all.
As reported by the Manchester Evening News , Smeaton, a company director, from Swinton, said: "I put the bet on nine months ago at the Swinton branch of William Hill. The guy in the bookies wrote it out for me. My mate kept the betting slip. We never dreamed that it would ever come in.
"I never thought Salford would finish top five, but I did have an inkling about Hastings winning the Man of Steel. I am a massive Salford fan. I sponsor Tyrone McCarthy and the Devils' mascot.
"I was on holiday abroad when we beat Wigan to get to the Grand Final and then Jackson won his title. I was made up. Even Jackson's mum was pleased for me. Then she sent me a message after reading what William Hill had said and said she was gutted.
William Hill are prepared to pay out £1,700 to each of us. I am not settling for that. I will take it all the way. The chief executive of William Hill has refused to speak to me. Gary Smeaton
"William Hill have now said they regard our bet as two £50 bets and are prepared to pay out £1,700 to each of us. I am not settling for that. I will take it all the way. The chief executive of William Hill has refused to speak to me.
"Kris and I were so elated at the weekend. Now we are so annoyed after coming down with a massive thud on Monday.
"I went back to the branch where I placed the bet and the person who wrote it out for me said he 'must have been half asleep' when he did it."
A spokesman for William Hill said: "As stated in our rules, a related contingency occurs when one or more parts of the bet placed affect the outcome of the bet. In this case, the prices of Jackson Hasting winning Man of Steel and Salford finishing in the top five are related.
"Were one outcome to happen, the other would be directly affected and as such the double price would be significantly smaller.
"This bet has been struck as a result of human error and as such has been corrected. At no point was the double on offer before the start of the season. Unfortunately, we realise this is disappointing for the customer and we can only apologise.
"In cases such as this, IBAS (Independent Betting Adjudication Service) offer an impartial adjudication on disputes between customers and licensed gambling operators."
Smeaton is refusing to take no for an answer, though.
He added: "There is no way I am letting this drop. I have taken it to the Independent Betting Adjudication Service.
"How can their explanation of human error pacify me?
"The choosing of the Man of Steel is done by a secret panel so how can that influence Salford finishing in the top five?"
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