Punter a goal away from netting £500,000
Reporter: KAREN DOHERTY
Date online: 30 January 2013
BRITAIN’S unluckiest punter was denied a half-million-pound windfall by referee Kevin Friend on Sunday.
The man in black didn’t live up to his name when he blew the final whistle on the FA Cup tie between Leeds and Spurs, which finished 2-1 just a second before the ball crossed the goal line for what would have made it a 3-1, jackpot-winning scoreline.
The Oldham gambler made the £3 bet at the Chadderton branch predicting, the correct scores in Sunday’s three FA Cup upsets in England and Scotland: Latics beating Liverpool 3-2, Celtic getting knocked out by St Mirren 3-2 and Brentford’s 2-2 draw with Chelsea.
But Friend denied him the jackpot by blowing for full time just as Rodolph Austin’s long-range effort rolled into the empty net.
The man, who didn’t want to be named, would have won a staggering £506,562 if the Leeds goal had counted. He still walked away with £17,055.80 for his “Lucky 15” bet.
Alex Donohue, of Ladbrokes, said: “The referee ruined our punter’s dream. Seventeen grand is sweet enough, but he was literally a second from having his life changed forever.”
Bookies heralded Sunday’s results as the biggest shocks ever as all three odds-on Premier League favourites failed to win against lower league opposition.
The Lucky 15 bet involved 15 separate 20p bets on four correct score predictions: four singles, six doubles, four trebles and an accumulator.
They were Brentford 2 Chelsea 2 at 18/1 , Leeds 3 Tottenham 1 (25/1), Oldham 3 Liverpool 2 (80/1), and St Mirren 3 Celtic 2 (50/1).
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