The promotion of live odds gambling during AFL matches on the MCG scoreboards will be banned from next season, MCG Trust chairman John Wylie has confirmed.
Speaking in The Age, Wylie said the MCG had become increasingly concerned at what he called a sharp increase in advertising of gambling agents and products, especially up-to-date odds during matches.
In the MCG Trust Annual Report, Wylie writes: ''We see this as a poor development for the ground, for the sporting codes and for the community.''
Elaborating, Wylie said: ''We just think it's inconsistent with what football at the MCG should be all about, which is the football, as opposed to the promotion of gambling on matches during matches. Our policy as a trust is that we would like to see the promotion of live gambling odds at the ground finished.''
Betfair has a contract to show live odds on the scoreboard screen at the MCG before matches, and at each break. This deal expires at the end of the season, and Wylie said it would not be renewed at the MCG.
''We're not against gambling companies promoting their services in a general sense,'' Wylie said. ''It's just that specific element [live odds] is something we think is not healthy, and something we would like to see ended at the MCG.''
The new arrangements will bring football into line with cricket, which does not allow the promotion of live odds.
Read John Wylie's chairman's message in the 2010/11 MCG Trust Annual Report.