The Western Sydney Wanderers have announced a year-long partnership with the Office of Responsible Gambling to raise awareness of gambling issues.

Under the contract, Wanderers do not accept any sports betting sponsorship or advertising agreements and the club will endeavor to educate employees, players and their fans about the risks associated with gambling.

Natalie Wright, director of the Office of Responsible Gambling, said the GambleAware partnership follows a similar partnership with Cricket NSW last year in which the Sydney Big Bash League (BBL) games were free of competition on the field.

“Attending a live sports event is a ritual for many people in NSW. We’re excited to see various codes and teams helping their fans win back the game and opt out of advertising and sponsorship for gambling,” said Wright.

“Having the Wanderers on board alongside Cricket NSW is fantastic and we look forward to more announcements in the future.

“We think you should be able to enjoy sports without betting.

“That’s why we’re working with sports codes and teams to get the game back and get back to what the sport is supposed to be about.

“The Wanderers have shown excellent leadership as the first A-League club to join the Reclaim the Game initiative. They are to be congratulated for their commitment to bringing sport to their fans minus betting,” she said .

John Tsatsimas, CEO of Wanderers, said the club has a strong focus on helping its community and this partnership is aligned with that focus.

“The Western Sydney Wanderers are fortunate to have some of the most passionate and dedicated fans of any club,” said Tsatsimas.

“We value those communities who have been such strong supporters, and one of the ways we want to give back is to choose partnerships that promote the community’s wellbeing.

“We know that gambling is a problem that affects many in our West Sydney community and we are thrilled to take this opportunity to raise awareness of gambling damage and reduce the amount of advertising that our fans experience are exposed, “he said.

The Office of Responsible Gambling said it was in further talks with other sporting rules and clubs with the hope of announcing more similar partnerships later in 2021.