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Over 600,000 Aussies expected to bet on AFL, NRL Grand Finals

Tue, Sep 27, 10:44am by Senior Writer

The growth is betting on Australia’s two biggest sporting codes has been revealed with one in 15 Australians expected to have a bet on either of this weekend’s Grand Finals between Sydney Swans and the Western Bulldogs (AFL) and Melbourne Storm and the Cronulla Sharks (NRL).

Roy Morgan has conducted research which indicated more Australians than ever will bet on this weekend’s Grand Finals, with estimates that 602,000 Australians aged 18+ (3.3%) placed bets on AFL or NRL games during the year to June 2016, up from 520,000 (2.9%) three years ago.

The AFL holds a slight edge in terms of the amount of people betting on it, with 409,000 bet on AFL and 306,000 on Rugby League, according to the release from Roy Morgan.

The other significant change has been in how people bet.

The research indicates 70% of AFL gamblers used a website or app to place their most recent bet on the sport, up from 48% three years ago, while rugby league punters are catching up on the mobile trend with 62 per cent of all bets on the sport now done digitally,

The survey canvassed the gambling habits of nearly 20,000 Australians, with a generational shift in attitudes towards sports betting evident.

63.8 per cent of men aged 50-plus said they would watch either of the Grand Finals, but only 2.6% would bet on the sport.

However, while men aged 25-34 were less likely to watch the matches (44.1%), over 9 per cent gamble on either AFL, NRL or both.

It was expected just 41.4% of males aged 18-24 would watch either Saturday or Sundays match, while 40.1 % of women would be watching. Just 0.8% of women said they bet on AFL or NRL.

“Over 600,000 Australians bet on AFL and Rugby League during the year—and almost three in five bettors are 25-49 year-old men, even though this group represents less than 25% of AFL and NRL TV audiences,” Michele Levine, CEO – Roy Morgan Research, said.

“AFL was the code of choice for over 100,000 more gamblers than Rugby League, which reflects the higher popularity of the sport nationwide. However, Rugby League bettors waged around 40% more on average than AFL bettors during the year. Rugby League actually accounted for 52% of all gambling expenditure across these two codes.”

“All up, Roy Morgan estimates Australians spent well over half a billion dollars gambling on AFL and NRL over the past year—with 70 cents in the dollar now being waged via websites and apps.”

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