The US Supreme Court will hear a case to legalise sports betting in New Jersey

 
Courtney Goldsmith
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New Jersey governor Chris Christie said he hoped fans could be betting on NFL games in time for the next Super Bowl (Source: Getty)

The US Supreme Court today agreed to hear a bid to revive a state law legalising sports betting.

In the US, a federal law called the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (Paspa) came into force in 1992, prohibiting sports gambling in all states except Nevada, Delaware, Montana and Oregon.

New Jersey has asked the court to hear its appeal of an August 2016 ruling which struck down its law to permit sports betting at casinos and racetracks. New Jersey argues that the federal law infringes upon state sovereignty.

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The top US court will hear arguments on whether sports betting should be legalised in New Jersey, and by extension elsewhere in the US, in October.

William Hill's chief executive Philip Bowcock welcomed the news.

“It is time that it was recognised that Paspa has failed as a law. We believe it is right that all parties, including the American sports leagues, now come together and establish a new framework of regulation."

Sports organisations including Major League Baseball, the National Basketball Association, the National Football League, the National Hockey League and the National Collegiate Athletic Association all oppose New Jersey's law.

Bowcock pointed out more than 100,000 jobs could be created and billions of tax raised on the back of new gambling rules.

William Hill has a stake in US betting laws. The bookmaker is Nevada's leading sports betting company with nearly 30 per cent of the state's revenue.

"We stand ready to take advantage of an opening up of the sports betting market in other states," Bowcock said.

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