No courtsiding spotted by Jets

GEORGE HEAGNEY
Last updated 12:00 04/06/2014

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The Manawatu Jets are unaware of anyone involved in prohibited "courtsiding" or providing live information from games in Palmerston North for gambling purposes.

The New Zealand National Basketball League is cracking down on courtsiding, which is when a spectator or spectators at a sporting event sends or uses immediate information on scores and activities in a game which assists betting.

There have been reports of people being employed in basketball stadiums around New Zealand to send back constant score updates from NBL games to overseas associates for live betting.

Jets chairwoman Janet Thompson hadn't noticed any potential courtsiders at Manawatu games this year.

"They said you're able to pick them because they're totally engrossed in their phone or their tablet and possibly wearing earphones as well," she said. "I think they would stick out like a sore thumb.

"I scanned the crowd quite carefully last night [Monday] and didn't see or hear anything."

The NBL emailed all 10 teams alerting them to the problem.

"I don't understand gambling but we were instructed to look out for it and we have not spotted anything."

NBL chairman Sam Rossiter-Stead last week said the league was out to halt the activity. "Although this practice is not illegal, it's certainly highly undesirable and we have asked teams to eject spotters from their venues and trespass them from future games."

Two men believed to be courtsiding were approached at the Waikato Pistons' match against the Otago Nuggets on Sunday and it's understood they were working for Real Time Sportscast, a company that provides live sport data.

They were told they weren't allowed to continue providing up-to-date information and agreed to halt their activities.

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- Manawatu Standard

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