Bookies take a punt on Broncos - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Bookies take a punt on Broncos

By Wayne Heming 03/02/2010 07:18:54 PM Comments (0)

It's an odd situation, a major sponsor cheering against the team is supports.

But that could be the scenario at times this year after prominent betting agency Sportingbet Australia took a six figure punt on the Broncos to become the first bookmaking organisation to have its name on an NRL jumper.

"The Broncos are a great sporting brand, equal to any around the world and we researched it very carefully," said Sportingbet Australia's chief executive Michael Sullivan.

The NRL, which receives a "product fee" from bookmakers betting on its games, has backed the sponsorship despite some concerns that sport and bookmakers should not be bed partners.

"The NRL are pretty protective of their game and they've endorsed it (sponsorship) and they're happy with it," said Sullivan at Wednesday's announcement.

"It's the first time an NRL club has had a wagering operator on its jersey but if you look at Europe, there are many teams, iconic teams like Real Madrid for instance, who have bookmaking firms on their jersey."

Broncos chief executive Bruno Cullen said Sportingbet Australia's platinum sponsorship filled up the top end of the club's sponsorship.

"The total level of sponsorship will be more than a few hundred thousand dollars higher than last year which is very positive after the world economic crisis we've been through," Cullen said.

"We've got a big year ahead of us with our naming rights sponsor Wow in the final year of its current contract so there could be a wonderful opportunity coming up if they don't renew."

Brisbane unveiled its new playing jumper on Wednesday but fans shouldn't notice too much difference.

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