A QuidditchUK statement regarding Match Fixing at Northern Cup 2018

QuidditchUK have concluded their investigations of the match fixing allegations that arose from Northern Cup 2018.

The allegations were overseen and investigated by:

Harry Smith, Development Director
Molly Maurice-Smith, Volunteers Director

These members were chosen as they have no current or prior affiliation with the involved clubs,  nor were they involved with either incident as a player or volunteer.

Upon completion of initial investigations the final report was independently verified by Joshua Fogg (Operations Director) to ensure investigations had been completed fairly and thoroughly.

Our investigations were completed following the disciplinary process outlined in the QuidditchUK Club and Team Membership Policy

Velociraptors vs Sheffield Quidditch Club

QuidditchUK received multiple complaints regarding the quarter-final match between Sheffield and Velociraptors, these were:

  1. Sheffield Squids fixed the match to give themselves an easier run to a European Qualifier Tournament spot.
  2. Sheffield Squids were disrespectful towards their opponents.
  3. Sheffield Squids showed a lack of sportsmanship at an upper bracket quarter-final match.
  4. Velociraptor players made violent physical threats towards Sheffield Squid players.
  5. Velociraptor players were intentionally playing to harm Sheffield Squids players.
  6. Velociraptors were a dangerous and unsafe team to compete against.

After taking statements from all involved parties, QuidditchUK has determined the the following.

  1. Sheffield Squids were complicit in match fixing, through lack of any reasonable attempt to attack or defend throughout the entire game. This complaint has been upheld.
  2. Sheffield Squids’ attitude and behaviour throughout the match was disrespectful towards their opponents in their lack of willingness towards to take the game seriously. This complaint has been upheld.
  3. Sheffield Squids’ attitude towards the match was poor, and threatened to bring disrepute to QuidditchUK as an organisation  and quidditch as a sport. Given this was a local tournament for Sheffield, having Sheffield based spectators watch this faux-competition could only serve to negatively impact the perception of both quidditch and Sheffield Quidditch Club. This complaint has been upheld.
  4. After taking statements from the entire referee team, the context in which the alleged threat was made deemed it to instead be a direct warning from the player and not a violent threat. The Velociraptor player had a free run towards the Sheffield hoops, and the defending Sheffield player was directly blocking the hoops. Should the Velociraptors player have chosen to, they could have legally (under the current IQA Rulebook 2018-2020 rules) charged through the defending Sheffield player. The Velociraptor player instead told the player to get out of the way. This complaint has been cleared.
  5. Velociraptor players were not playing illegally or dangerously, and their level of physicality was consistent with how they had been competing throughout the tournament against other opponents. Furthermore their contact was inline with how other teams had been playing throughout Northern. This complaint has been cleared.
  6. Velociraptor players did not cause a higher number of injuries through regular play at Northern Cup 2018, and QuidditchUK disagrees that they are a dangerous team to play against. This complaint has been cleared.

QuidditchUK acknowledges that Sheffield Squids were conserving themselves for further fixtures, however the approach the team took showed a severe lack of sportsmanship, and called into question the validity of the sport in front of a crowd of spectators, including those from Sheffield itself, who were expecting a competitive quarterfinal.

Through our investigation, QuidditchUK has determined the following penalties be applied to Sheffield Quidditch Club, deeming their behaviour falls under the following in the Club and Team Membership Policy:

Displaying attitude or conduct on a quidditch pitch or in a quidditch environment which brings or threatens to bring QuidditchUK into disrepute by association of membership.

Sheffield Squids will be permitted to compete at the British Quidditch Cup 2019, however they will enter the competition as an unseeded team.

No further penalties shall be applied to the Sheffield Squids leadership staff.

No penalty shall be applied to the Sheffield Steelfins.

Both Velociraptors QC and Sheffield Quidditch Club were given until 4/12/18 to appeal the decisions made by QuidditchUK, no appeal was made by either club.

QuidditchUK has now released the final rankings for Northern Cup 2018As Sheffield has lost their second seed status, Leeds Griffins will enter the British Quidditch Cup as a second seed team.

As the QuidditchUK Team Match-Fixing Policy was implemented following Northern Cup 2018, we have not punished Sheffield Quidditch Club retroactively via this policy. However any further instances of Match-Fixing by any QuidditchUK club or team will be met with the policy in full. This matter is now considered resolved by QuidditchUK. For any questions or queries, please get in touch via quidditchuk.org/contact