Betting probe heads north - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Betting probe heads north

Steve Jancetic 06/10/2010 06:07:04 PM Comments (0)

Investigations into rugby league's betting scandal will turn to North Queensland players and officials when NSW police take their inquiries to Townsville on Thursday.

Detectives from Strike Force Suburb are understood to be headed north to continue probes into the August 21 clash between the Bulldogs and the Cowboys, alleged to be the subject of a betting sting involving the first scoring play option.

It is not yet clear whether Cowboys skipper Johnathan Thurston, who was injured and did not play in the round 24 match, will be one of the players questioned.

Police interviewed Bulldogs players on Tuesday and Wednesday, with more questioning scheduled for coming weeks when players return from holidays or become available after off-season surgery.

Among those already interviewed are skipper Andrew Ryan and retired halfback Brett Kimmorley, although there is no suggestion either is involved in the alleged sting.

Bulldogs chief executive Todd Greenberg confirmed every Bulldogs player had made themselves available for questioning.

"We'll continue to comply with all directives from both the NRL and NSW police and we'll continue to assist them in their investigation in any way possible," Mr Greenberg said.

A spokeswoman for the NSW State Crime Command refused to confirm the number or identity of the players interviewed to date.

Mr Greenberg was reluctant to discuss scandal's impact on the club, preferring instead to await the findings of the police investigation.

To date there does not appear to be any sponsor backlash against the Bulldogs, who have worked tirelessly over the course of the past few seasons to improve their off-field image.

The NRL is no longer playing any part in the investigations, which has been the case since the matter was handed over to police last month.

A plunge on a Cowboys penalty goal - normally a low percentage option - to be the first scoring play, prompted betting agencies to suspend bettingon that option in the match.

A Bulldogs turnover and penalty allowed the Cowboys an early shot at goal from almost in front of the posts, but the home side declined and instead took the tap and scored a try.

An email has been doing the rounds for the past couple of weeks claiming a prominent player, player-manager and former player were involved.

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