The Courier Mail is reporting that the Australian Football League Player’s Association (AFLPA) has decided to join the AFL in combating gambling. After much discussion, all accredited AFL Agents will be banned from betting on AFL matches. However, there is a twist. Instead of the AFL itself handing down the penalties for the breaches, Agents will have to front the AFLPA’s Agent Accreditation Board.
Gambling issues have been at the forefront of the AFL for many years now, with a string of breaches involving several personnel from players to coaches, with many receiving either fines or suspensions. Adding Agents to their gambling policy shows the seriousness of the subject, and highlights how close the Agent-Athlete relationship is.
One of the major issues in relation to betting on the AFL is in relation to exotics, such as First Goalscorer. It’s a market which the AFL sees can be easily manipulated, with Collingwood player Heath Shaw being suspended for betting on a fellow teammate, as he was privy to inside information.
The ban comes into effect on July 6, the date of the annual AFL Agents Conference.