Can Rugby World Cup attract crossover punters?

Can Rugby World Cup attract crossover punters?

Wednesday, September 16, 2015 Totally Gaming
Unibet's Ed Nicholson expects gamblers to engage with the tournament

The 2015 Rugby World Cup is set to entice punters from across the sports betting spectrum, according to Unibet spokesman Ed Nicholson.

The tournament gets under way in England on Friday, with bookmakers expecting a mid-season boost thanks to the 48-game event.

Unibet has promoted rugby as one of its key ‘secondary sports’ in recent years through advertising and promotions, and expects a crossover of punters from mainstream betting options.

“We expect the Rugby World Cup to cut across from those who follow rugby to those who follow sports, and as such we are hopeful that we will see significantly increased turnover," Nicholson told TotallyGaming.com. "However, this will probably be when the UK nations - and England, in particular - are playing.

“I’ve seen industry spokesman mention turnover figures in excess of £50m (€77.2m/$68.8m) -  I doubt it will be that big, but it will the biggest single rugby betting tournament the betting industry has ever seen, and will smash figures from the last Rugby World Cup.”

Unibet is launching a series of promotions related to the tournament, and will see its multi-sport advert broadcast during the tournament.

While Nicholson said that the World Cup will reinforce the dominance of international rugby as a betting option, he added that club rugby is becoming more popular thanks to greater exposure.

“Rugby is all about the big internationals – with most turnover every year centring on the Six Nations, and then the Autumn Internationals,” he said. “Turnover on the weekly rugby union matches is increasing year on year – and the ever growing televised coverage helps with this, as live betting is the growth area.”
 

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