Wanderers latest club to say no to sports betting sponsors
Sports fans in NSW will soon be able to enjoy more sport free of betting advertisements after the Office of Responsible Gambling announced a new partnership with the Western Sydney Wanderers.
Natalie Wright, Director of the Office of Responsible Gambling, said the one-year ‘GambleAware’ partnership aims to address the normalisation of sports betting and raise awareness of gambling harm.
The agreement follows a similar partnership with Cricket NSW announced late last year, under which Sydney Big Bash games are free of on-ground betting advertising.
“Attending a live sports event is a real ritual for many people in NSW, and we’re excited that different codes and teams are supporting their fans to ‘Reclaim the Game’ and turning down gambling advertising and sponsorship,” Ms Wright said
“It’s fantastic to have the Wanderers on board alongside Cricket NSW and we look forward to more announcements in the future.
“We think you should be able to enjoy sport without betting. That’s why we’re working with sports codes and teams to Reclaim the Game and get back to what sport is meant to be about.”
Under the agreement, the Wanderers will not accept any sports betting sponsorships or promotional agreements, and the club will educate staff, players and their fans about the risks associated with gambling.
“The Wanderers have shown great leadership as the first A-League club to join the Reclaim the Game initiative, and they are to be congratulated on their commitment to bringing sport to their fans, minus the betting promotion,” Ms Wright said.
John Tsatsimas, CEO of the Wanderers said the move is aligned with the club’s strong focus on community.
“The Western Sydney Wanderers are fortunate to have some of the most passionate, engaged fans of all clubs.” Tsatsimas said.
“We value those communities who have been such strong supporters, and one of the ways we aim to give back is by choosing partnerships that encourage community wellbeing.
“We know that gambling is an issue that concerns many in our Western Sydney community, and we’re really excited to have this opportunity to raise awareness of gambling harm and reduce the amount of betting promotion that our fans are exposed to.”
The Wanderers’ next A-League home game is scheduled for 10 February, when they take on Melbourne Victory FC.
The Office of Responsible Gambling is in discussions with other sporting codes and clubs and hopes to announce more sign ups to Reclaim the Game throughout the year.
If you or someone you care about needs support or advice, please call GambleAware on 1800 858 858 for free and confidential help and support 24/7.