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Cricket Ireland issues apology for controversial advertising during Ireland-India games

Sep 13, 2023

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Ireland vs India. (Photo Source: Seb Daly/Sportsfile via Getty Images)

Cricket Ireland has issued an apology for any offence caused by advertisements at the multi-format series between Ireland and India at home. The advertisements were for gambling companies accused of accepting bets on children’s sports and pushing sexually explicit content. Notably, Sport Ireland has approached Cricket Ireland to examine sponsorship arrangements following many complaints regarding the commercials.

Sport Ireland received several complaints about gambling companies whose branding was apparent on advertising hoardings, the boundary rope, and television coverage of the three-match series in August. Sport Ireland said in a statement that it has discussed the matter with Cricket Ireland.

Cricket Ireland stated that it “unreservedly” apologizes for “any offence inadvertently caused.” The UK Gambling Commission suspended 1xBet, one of the businesses with branding visible at the venue, in 2019 following a Sunday Times’ investigation that claimed the company advertised a “pornhub casino” that “entices gamblers with topless croupiers.” Additionally, the website was charged with accepting bets on kid’s sports and cockfights as well as with advertising on fraudulent websites.

When the Irish Times asked 1xBet to provide a statement for the same, the company didn’t respond to it. However, 1xBet previously told the Sunday Times that some of the “dubious brand promotions and advertising on piracy websites” were the fault of its marketing partners abroad.

Other businesses that advertised during the Ireland cricket matches were SportsX9 and Kheloyar, both of which have pornographic photos on their websites. On their homepages, Khelraja and Six6s, two additional websites, both have tabs labelled “sexy” gaming.

The companies like SportsX9 and Khelraja did not reply to requests for comment while Kheloyar and Six6s sent automated statements that did not answer the concerns. “Associated imagery used by the brands on their websites are not in keeping with the values of Cricket Ireland,” a Cricket Ireland spokesman said in a statement.

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