England’s bid to host the 2018 Quidditch World Cup looks to be in tatters following news that spoilsport BBC chiefs are to air bribery claims against the sport’s governing body, Qifa.
A special edition of Panorama will be screened next Wednesday, days before the Quidditch International Federal Association unveils the 2018 tournament hosts at a special ceremony at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry.
A whistleblower, referred to in the programme as The Golden Snitch, makes claims that senior Qifa officials accepted bribes from firms who secured lucrative Quidditch World Cup rights in the 1990s.
Harry Potter and Hagrid will join a host of superstar names from the world of sport and academia in an attempt to smooth over relations with the powerful Qifa committee who will make the host country decision.
And delegates from the Department of Magical Games and Sports, which runs Quidditch in England, have been working behind the scenes to play down the significance and timing of Panorama’s investigation.
A spokesman said: “We have a free press in England. And those really cool newspapers where the pictures come to life like videos on an iPad magazine. It’s mint.
“But the timing of this programme could hardly have been worse. There is no doubt the BBC will be to blame if we don’t get the World Cup, them and journalism in general for daring to try to expose corruption.
“What sort of a country do we live in where unearthing wrongdoing takes precedence over major sporting goods companies making a fortune out of the World Cup being played in our back yard?”