FOOTBALL: Ex U's man Wilson in race-fixing probe

Banbury Cake: Mark Wilson Mark Wilson

Former Oxford United midfielder Mark Wilson is among those involved in a British Horseracing Authority disciplinary panel hearing over breaches of the rules of racing, which got under way yesterday.

The 33-year-old, who made six appearances for United last season including the 2-0 derby win over Swindon Town at the Kassam Stadium, is among nine individuals who face corruption charges.

They also include two other footballers, Ipswich Town striker Michael Chopra and Doncaster Rovers winger James Coppinger, together with jockey Andrew Heffernan.

The five others are Yogesh Joshee, Paul Garner, Kelly Inglis, Douglas Shelley and Pravin Shingadia.

Wilson, along with Chopra, Garner, Joshee, Shelley and Wilson have also been charged with offering bribes to Heffernan.

Heffernan has been charged with communicating for reward information to betting exchange account holders over the prospects of horses he was riding in races, and unlicenced individuals acted on that information.

He is also charged with failing to ensure a horse ridden by him ran on its merits.

Chopra released a statement earlier this month revealing that he could not afford to defend himself at the hearing, and would welcome a ban so he could overcome a gambling addiction problem.

Ten working days have been set aside for the hearing.

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