The Sydney Kings and Sydney Uni Flames, of Australia’s men’s and women’s National Basketball League, respectively, have joined the New South Wales’ Reclaim the Game initiative and opted to reject sports betting sponsorships and advertising.

Reclaim the Game aims to “counter the normalisation of sports betting and advertising in sport and to raise awareness of gambling harms” by reducing exposure to related advertising and sponsorships.

Natalie Wright, director of the NSW Office of Responsible Gambling, said: “We’re seeing sports betting advertising in almost every aspect of sport which sends a message that betting is part and parcel of enjoying sport.”

Paul Smith, chairman and owner of the teams, said: “Our own players have been victim to abuse on social media because betting got out of hand. By working with GambleAware, we are encouraging our fans and the community to stay within their means and to not let betting take away from what sport should be about.”

The programme’s goals reflect the stance of the community, in which 77 per cent believe there is too much gambling advertising, according to research by the Office of Responsible Gambling.

In addition, one in five people hold the opinion that advertising increases the risk of developing a gambling problem.

This is not a new concern, with French gambling regulator ANJ having stated that “a line was crossed” in terms of betting advertisements during this year’s soccer Uefa European Championships.

The ANJ concluded that there was an excess of gambling adverts, some of which targeted young people.