Cricket Australia has turned down an offer from a betting company to sponsor the Big Bash League (BBL) in an effort to stay true to the family-focused entertainment of the Twenty20 league.
Cricket Australia already has an existing agreement in place with international betting company bet365, however, the organisation has recently received criticism from the Alliance for Gambling Reform for its continued association with the betting company.
Cricket Australia chief executive, Kevin Roberts, said in an interview with SEN Radio that the partnership with bet365 sits outside of the BBL and is managed separately from Cricket Australia.
“That is something we won’t do, because it’s fun, family entertainment,” Roberts said, when asked about the reported offer from an unnamed betting company to sponsor the BBL.
“[There are] two very separate points here.
“The integrity of the game, it’s all about keeping the game clean.
“And, on the other hand, very separately, we have a commercial arrangement in the sports betting space in Australia.
“I would not that we’re very conservative in that space, we have an existing commercial arrangement in some other forms of the game, and we need to honour that at this point in time.
“But in terms of our future commercial strategy, we’re going to be reflecting on the sponsorship categories and the markets where we want to do more, where we want to maintain our position, and in some cases where we want to do less,” he said.
Cricket Australia is making it very clear that the sponsorship of betting companies with the Big Bash League simply does not align with the values and aims of the league, with Roberts also stating Cricket Australia will review its partnership with bet365 “when the time is right”.