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MENAFN - Kora - 20/03/2014
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(MENAFN - Kora) Andros Townsend and Cameron Jerome have both been fined for rule breaches in the past year, while Dan Gosling admitted a similar charge of betting on a competition in which he was involved earlier this month

FA rules state that players "shall not bet, either directly or indirectly" on matches involving themselves or their team as well as a competition they currently play in or have played in

Regulations also prohibit players from betting on "any other matter concerning or related to any club participating in any league competition that the participant is participating in or has participated in during that season"

And the latest case has prompted FA chairman Greg Dyke to reveal that the governing body is considering adopting a blanket ban on footballers betting on the sport - a system already in use in Scotland

"The FA are obviously now starting to think about going along the lines of a blanket ban for those people that participate in football," William Hill director of security Bill South told Perform. "It's not going to be straightforward because of the amount of people who are involved in the sport

"That's why working with them is the key to it and I suppose, from my own experience, it's about the sanctions that an individual sport can apply to those people that break their rules, because that's where the deterrent factor comes into it

"In relation to shops, there still remains a reasonable degree of anonymity that the individuals can go in and bet, so you couldn't devise a system at the moment that could alert you to every professional sportsman or woman when they decide to put a bet on in contravention of their own rules

"There have been a number of cases recently, but I think what that's doing is it's actually highlighting the issue, which is probably what's prompted the FA to start talking about it openly in relation to stopping their people from betting on football.

South did stress, however, that the company would be obliged to make the authoriti aware if they suspected rules were being broken

"If we got information, or we believe somebody has been in contravention of those rules, our first port of call would probably be the Gambling Commission, because we would have a duty or an obligation to report that to them," he continued

"We do have a relationship with governing bodies such as the FA and the British Horseracing Authority, and we would also speak to them should we become aware of something like that happening.

However, he did concede that the anonymity presented by shops posed problems with regard to less recognisable professional footballers

"Let's say A N Other footballer walks in, or somebody connected to the club who is bound by the governing body's rules, we aren't going to know who they are in the majority of those cases," he added. "That's why we work very closely with sport and also with the Gambling Commission

"One of the outcomes of the Parry Report, which exists now as the formation of a tripartite group which involves sports, the commission and betting operators is to improve methods of communication in relation to that very issue.

When asked whether the company's high-street shops could adopt similar security checks to those currently employed on gambling websites, PR directory Kate Miller stressed: "The whole philosophy behind betting shops is that it's a cash business and people like to go in and go about their business

"I think the same can be said about people registering for any service on the high street really - betting shops, buying alcohol, buying cigarettes. Should there be an argument for everybody registering across every possible medium

"We can't enforce those kind of laws, otherwise we'd end up having a nanny state

"Our systems are amongst the most sophisticated in terms of tracking. We work in tandem with lots of different operators and I think there needs to be a strong understanding of just how much work goes into upholding the integrity of spor



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