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In the terms of a ‘Reclaim the Game’ agreement with the Office of Responsible Gambling, fans of two New South Wales sporting teams will now be able to enjoy games free of betting advertising.
As a result, the Sydney Swans of Australian rules football and Macarthur FC of Australian football have vowed to collaborate with the office to increase awareness of gambling issues and have refused those sponsorships.
Increasing awareness of gambling hazards
The Sydney Swans’ CEO, Tom Harley, said the club was “thrilled” to be partnering with the NSW Government’s Reclaim the Game campaign to increase awareness of the hazards of gambling.
He said: “The focus of our partnership is on addressing the normalisation of sports betting and as part of this, Swans matches at the SCG will not feature gambling advertising or sponsorship.”
Respect for the area and its supporters
Macarthur FC chairman Gino Marra claimed that as a young club, they decided to demonstrate their respect for the area and its supporters.
Marra explained: “As a club, we want to ensure we are looking after the wellbeing of our members, fans, and the wider community. This partnership does just that.
“Our fans have got behind us in this first season, and we are excited to get behind them, too. The club, including our players, coaches, and staff, are passionate about raising awareness on this important topic.”
This follows close collaborations with the Office of Responsible Gambling and Western Sydney Wanderers FC and Cricket NSW. Talks with other sports codes and clubs are still underway, with the intention of announcing more Reclaim the Game sign-ups during the year.
Looking after fans and communities
Manager of the Office of Responsible Gambling Natalie Wright explained: “We now have four major agreements across three of the most popular codes after starting with cricket. That really speaks to clubs recognising their role in looking after their fans and their communities.
“Aside from not accepting any sports betting sponsorships, the clubs have committed to educating their staff, players, and fans about the risks associated with gambling.
“Sport is a big part of our Australian culture, and it should be enjoyed without having to experience gambling advertising as part of a match.”