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Dorchester chairman expects quick-fix to betting investigation
SHAUN Hearn reckons the investigation into suspicious betting patterns in Blue Square Bet South should come to a quick conclusion.
The shock news came to light last week when the Football Association made contact with all 22 clubs in the division, appealing for information about possible breaches of betting rules.
The Gambling Commission’s Sports Betting Intelligence Unit is also on the case while two betting firms are refusing to take bets on matches involving Chelmsford, Billericay and AFC Hornchurch.
Dorchester Town chairman Hearn, whose side were scheduled to host Hornchurch last Saturday until heavy rain intervened, told Echosport: “I think the investigation is still in its very early stages.
“We all know that we are not allowed to be involved in betting as part of the FA’s regulations and to be honest I have been quite surprised by it all. “It will certainly be interesting to see what the outcome will be.
“There is obviously a lot of speculation and it remains to be seen what comes of it. “They either have some evidence or they don’t, and I would imagine the whole thing should be sorted pretty quickly.”
One thing that might take a while longer is the Magpies’ transition to a community-owned club.
Talks between the club’s board of directors, the Dorchester Town FC Community Trust and Dorchester Town Youth FC are still continuing and Hearn remains hopeful they will lead to the desired result.
He added: “Discussions are ongoing. We have just got to make sure everything is transparent and it is going to take a little bit of time.
“The main thing is everything is still positive and everyone is still talking.
“The most important thing is that we get the right people doing the right jobs, because this is something that has got to be right for everybody.
“A massive amount of time and effort goes into running a football club and currently there are not enough hours in the day for the amount of people involved at the moment.
“Once we get more people involved in the right roles and responsibilities then I have no doubts it will be hugely positive for the club going forward.”
It has been a tough winter for clubs throughout the football pyramid and it has been no different for the Magpies as the adverse weather continues to play havoc with the fixture schedule.
As well as the Hornchurch game, Dorchester also lost last Tuesday night’s home clash against Farnborough to a frozen pitch.
Hearn said: “Losing two games in five days at home is an absolute nightmare for the football club.
“Obviously those matches will be rearranged but more people go to football on a Saturday than they do a Tuesday, which means it could lead to a loss of revenue.
“It has been a very tough season in terms of postponements and we are certainly going to have to take a good look at our pitch at the end of the season.
“That is another big project for the football club but we will keep going.”