Professional athletes in Australia share their concerns about an increasing abuse by angry gamblers. Among negative comments, some online users are even posting death threats.
Australian Athletes Speak Out of Abuse by Punters
Abuse by gamblers against professional athletes is a popular topic in Australia recently. Professional players from different sports are now speaking out on social media, sharing their concern. There are some $142.94 billion wagered on sports betting for a year in the country. With that in mind, we only wonder if the country may consider limits due to the rising abuse by angered gamblers.
Andrew Bogut, a former Aussie NBA player commented on the subject by writing on twitter: “Place a bet. Lose. Be an adult about it.“
And while Bogut kept a relaxed tone, the footballer Mitch Robinson known as ‘Robbo’ from the Brisbane Lions said: “Not one AFL player (gives a fling) how we cost you a $100 multi, it’s $5 bet you idiot.” Robinson’s post on Twitter yesterday urged that gamblers, who are struggling over such amount, shouldn’t gamble in the first place. Wishes for injuries and death threats are also not going to do the job, added Robinson.
Another professional player spoke out loud on the subject. The National Rugby League (NRL) player Ryan Papenhuyzen of the Melbourne Storm said for NRL.com: “Lots of the boys after a game do get a fair bit of stick from fans and punters.” Papenhuyzen found this as annoying and said that every player is out there for the win. “We don’t go out there to lose peoples’ bets,” he added.
Death Threats Towards GWS Callan Ward
Looking at last week, another professional player shared his concern about negative comments and even death threats. Last week, in a game between Greater Western Sydney Giants and Essendon Bombers, Callan Ward of GWS was awarded a free kick near the end of the game. Ward kicked the goal which led to a 10 points extension for the GWS. Ever since that goal, Ward has been receiving various threats including death threats.
Cited by 3AW last week, Ward said that although he is trying not to listen (to the threats) this must stop as many professional players might not be able to handle such pressure. “I am in a situation where I am an AFL footballer, but at the same time I am away from my family and it is tough,” said Ward. He added that he feels disappointed to see people expressing their “passion and hatred.”
Following the flow of negative comments, last week Saturday the Essendon Bombers released a statement, condemning any threats and social media commentary towards Ward. The club said that investigation is pending and if a club member has made threats an appropriate action will be taken. “As a club, we do not stand for this and we will continue to call out this toxic online behaviour,” said the Essendon Football Club.