Thursday, April 12, 2012

12 April 1964 - That's Still A £2,000 Profit, Though

On 12 April 1964, the Sunday People tabloid broke the story of a fix two years earlier between Sheffield Wednesday and Ipswich Town. The ensuing investigation resulted in ten convictions, including a four-year prison sentence for the ringleader.

That ringleader was former striker Jimmy Gauld, who had played for several clubs in England and Scotland before a leg injury ended his career in 1961. During his playing days, Gauld supplemented his income through match-fixing. He continued that sideline into 1962, when he approached Sheffield Wednesday striker David Layne, a former teammate.

Gauld and Layne then enlisted two additional Wednesday players, Peter Swan and Tony Kay, persuading them to guarantee a loss in an upcoming match against Ipswich Town, then sitting in 21st place. They all placed bets against Wednesday, who, despite sitting thirteen spots higher, duly lost 2-0.

In 1964, Gauld tried to make an additional profit by selling his story to Sunday People for £7,000. The paper published the story on 12 April and an investigation quickly followed. Gauld, Layne, Swan, and Kay were all convicted, as were six Mansfield Town players connected to another Gauld fix. Gauld received the harshest punishment, getting a four-year prison term and a fine of £5,000. Additionally, all ten players were given lifetime bans from football.

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