Demonising Justin Gatlin
13th September 2015
The Australian Football League (AFL)’s Competition Integrity Department have suspended Greater Western Sydney (GWS) Giants’ recruiting assistant Paul Brodie. Both the club and Brodie wwere advised last week that an investigation into a bet placed in contravention to AFL rules had been conclusded, and that Brodie would be suspended ‘for the next 13 months within the AFL competition’ until 1 December 2016.
In a press release, the AFL said that the investigation had found that Brodie had ‘breached AFL rules by placing a $100 head-to-head multi bet on five round 19 matches, including one match that the GWS Giants were playing in.’ The bet was reportedly successful, with a return of AUD$945. According to the AFL’s National Gambling Policy, no support personnel associated with a football club can bet on ‘any contingency related to or in any way connected with’ an AFL match.
The GWS Giants released a statement acknowledging the notification and that Mr Brodie had ‘tendered his resignation to the club effective immediately.’ In the statement Brodie said that he was ‘very sorry for the lack of respect I have shown for the rules and principles that maintain the integrity of our game,’ adding that he would ‘accept whatever sanction is imposed on me as an appropriate penalty.’ If Brodie wishes to return to a job in AFL, he will be ‘required to reapply for registration as a Club official at the end of his suspension period.’
The club’s CEO, David Matthews, supported Brodie’s suspension, saying ‘Any action that has the potential to undermine the game’s integrity is clearly unacceptable and the consequences are rightly severe.’ According to the Australian newspaper The Daily Telegraph, GWS have already started looking for a replacement recruiting assistant. The paper reported that Matthews said, ‘We’re now in a position to finalise the structural changes to the recruiting department over the coming weeks,’ adding that despite Brodie’s actions, there is a ‘comprehensive range of education programs on this issue and other integrity matters. This is a timely reminder of the role we all play in upholding the game’s integrity.’
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