GAA to debate gambling ban

Ireland’s largest sporting organisation said that a gambling ban is necessary to protect the players.

Ireland.- The Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA) said that the country needs to introduce a gambling ban in order to protect GAA players. They said that the concern is growing since there’s a rise in gambling problems among members.

The GAA’s health and wellbeing committee is planning on introducing a motion at the next February’s Congress. If it gets passed, players would be banned from betting on matches and competitions that they’re involved in. Colin Regan, GAA’s Community and Health manager, said that the committee is meeting next month to decide what to write in the proposal, and added that they’re approaching leading companies to police the proposal in the best way possible.

The manager announced that they have already established a memorandum of understanding with Betfair. “They are in the process of broadening that Memorandum of Understandings (MOU) to other betting overseeing bodies that if there is ever suspicion of any type of suspicious betting, that the betting entity would work with us in giving us data and information that would support any investigations we might have to undertake,” he added.

Justin Campbell , addiction counsellor and former Galway hurler, said that it is time to properly introduce some preventions. “I believe we could be in crisis territory in five years time if we don’t put in place rules and regulations. Now is the time to start responding before it is too late. The health and wellbeing committee are bringing a submission to Congress in February that no player would be allowed gamble on any of his own competitions, be it club or county. This is a step forward, but it is probably only the first step. In fairness to Croke Park, they’re not shirking responsibility.”

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