Liang Wenbo suspended from World Snooker Tour after attacking woman in Sheffield

Snooker star Liang Wenbo has been suspended from competing on the World Snooker Tour after being found guilty of a brutal assault on a woman in Sheffield.

By Darren Burke
Saturday, 2nd April 2022, 7:04 pm

The 35-year-old player was filmed on CCTV kicking and punching a woman in a sustained attack in the city centre and was yesterday fined a total of £1,380 and given a 12 month community order.

Now snooker bosses have suspended him from the snooker circuit – meaning he is unlikely to play at the World Championships at the Crucible later this year.

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Liang Wenbo has been suspended from the World Snooker Tour after being found guilty of assaulting a woman.

The World Professional Billiards and Snooker Association has moved to ban Wenbo with immediate effect.

A spokesman said: “Following the conviction of Liang Wenbo for domestic-related assault at Sheffield Magistrates’ Court and subsequent sentence, the WPBSA has decided that Liang has a case to answer for misconduct under the WPBSA disciplinary rules.

“The charges are that Liang Wenbo’s behaviour was unbecoming of a sportsperson and has brought the sport into disrepute. This is contrary to the WPBSA Members Rules and his contract with World Snooker Ltd to compete on the World Snooker Tour.

Jason Ferguson, the Chairman of the WPBSA, took the decision to suspend Liang from attending or competing on the World Snooker Tour with immediate effect.

The suspension will remain in place until the conclusion of the hearing or hearings and the determination of the matter. Liang has the right to appeal this decision, the WPBSA said.

Mr Ferguson said: “The decision to suspend a player with immediate effect is not one taken lightly. However, due to the violent and criminal nature of this offence, I have reached the decision that this is the only appropriate action to be taken pending the outcome of the formal disciplinary process.”

The matter will be referred to the WPBSA Disciplinary Committee where a formal hearing will take place at a venue and date to be confirmed.

Earlier, Sheffield MP Louise Haigh had called for the snooker star to be banned from the upcoming World Championship at the Crucible after what she has described as a ‘violent and appalling’ assault on a woman in the city.

She said: “This is a shockingly pathetic sentence for such a violent and appalling assault.

“Liang Wenbo must be barred from participating in the Snooker Championships in Sheffield and all such tournaments for the foreseeable.”

Sheffield Magistrates Court heard the woman dialled 999 while screaming in distress after being attacked by the world number 33 who was charged with a domestic-related assault by beating.

CCTV from Charles Street in the city centre captured Wenbo and his victim having what appeared to be an argument on July 20 last year, which culminated in Wenbo repeatedly hitting and kicking her.

Wenbo then dragged the woman to the ground and continued his assault, despite another man trying to intervene to stop him.

Further footage from another CCTV camera showed Wenbo pushing the woman against a wall and throwing punches towards her.