Saturday 10 December 2016

'GAA players betting is rampant . . . I even bet against my team'

Martin Grant

Published 13/05/2016 | 02:30

The player claimed that gambling was
The player claimed that gambling was "quite rampant" throughout the GAA and that bookmakers' odds were regularly discussed in dressing rooms and on team buses (Picture posed)

A GAA player has revealed how a serious gambling addiction led to him betting against his own team.

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The inter-county footballer has claimed that gambling is endemic in the GAA and that little is being done to tackle the issue.

The player, who wishes to remain anonymous, told RTÉ Radio that he was left feeling ashamed and in pain after placing the bet.

"I gambled on a National League game. I bet against our team and it came in. It was a shameful thing to do," he said.

"For me to go and target a game like that to bet on, against our own team, it was the height of disrespect.

"I would be quite ashamed of that act. I really wanted to turn around and make right and get myself into a better position in life to be free of all of this pain."

The player claimed that gambling was "quite rampant" throughout the GAA and that bookmakers' odds were regularly discussed in dressing rooms and on team buses.

He added: "There was one particular time I did a bet on a couple of soccer games and I had training at the same time. I brought my computer with me to training in my car.

"During training, I went over to check the scores in the games. I'd feign an injury or let on I was going to the toilet just in order to go and check the scores."

A spokesman for the GAA told the Irish Independent last night that the association did not have any comment to make on the issue of gambling at this time.

Irish Independent

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