3 Questionable TV Adverts By Sportsmen

The world of a professional sportsman is a heady place.

Consider this scenario: you’ve just turned 20 and you’ve been signed by a Premier League Football team, from next week you’re going to be paid £4,000 every Monday morning.

The most money you’ve ever had in your life will be piped into your bank account on a weekly basis and you’ve got no real expenses to spend it on. Obviously, the sensible option is to put away the majority of it and leave a few hundred quid aside for your weekly expenses, but you’re young and dumb – that’s not going to happen. 2 years later you’re struggling to stay in the starting lineup and you’ve spent a lot of money.

Luckily, you’re kind of famous by this point and there are dozens of companies lining up to use your image to sell their products. Who cares if you’ve never run your own BBQ business, people will trust you when you say it’s a great business opportunity. Even though, when it comes down to it, you should be considering your future career and the legacy that you want to be leaving; the promise of an easy buck is just too hard to resist.

It happens to the best of them, even when they’ve got a few more years on the clock, here are a few of the most questionable ones:

Warner Gains Hair, But Loses Respect

When Shane Warne, legendary Australian spin-bowler, retired from Test Cricket in 2007, he was clearly a little worried about a couple of things. One of them was most likely the bald patch on his pate that had been slowly growing for the last 10 years or so, with aerial cameras used in Cricket coverage hardly helping him hide his shame. The second might have been how he was going to keep bringing in money to support his Shane Warne Foundation, a charitable organisation aimed at helping disadvantaged children in Australia.

Thankfully, help came to him in the form of one company and several advertising opportunities. For the last 10 years, Warne has been a brand ambassador for Advanced Hair Studio. With TV spots often being shown in and around cricket coverage that he is featuring in. Although the Cricketing community has taken many chances to ridicule him, Warne has continued to sponsor the company who also have a raft of other Cricketing celebrities on their pay roll.

Yorkshire’s Own Race for Royalties

The Brownlee brothers first made headlines back in the London 2012 Olympics, when they both took homes medals in the Triathlon event, flying the flag for both their country as well as their home county of West Yorkshire. Since then, both brothers have continued to achieve bringing home gold, silver and bronze medals, running alone and as a team. Frequently referred to in the news as ‘local boys who’ve done good’, these young athletes are often caught on-camera performing altruistic acts, proving to the world time and time again what nice blokes they are.

Still – it doesn’t matter how pious you might appear, the promise of a little bit of extra cash is often too good to resist, especially when it comes from a brand that is close to every Yorkshire man’s heart. When Yorkshire Tea reached out to the Brownlee brothers, to see if they were interested in lending their faces to a TV advert campaign in March of this year, the resounding ‘yes’ was probably followed by a resounding ‘how much?’.

The Lightning Bolt’s Fast Millions

When it comes to international athletic superstars, they don’t get much bigger than Usain Bolt. The ‘Lightning Bolt’, as he is often referred to, is the fastest man in the world, holder of multiple World Records and a very – very – rich man. After announcing that he would retire from athletics after the 2017 World Championships, there’s much speculation as to what Bolt will do, a retired man at the age of 31. Bolt is no stranger to advertising and sponsorship deals, after winning the 200m World Championships title in 2002 he was offered his first sponsorship deal from Puma. Since then he’s collaborated with major brands such as Visa and has even starred in his own mobile game.

Despite the amount of spare time that he’s going to have on his hands from August onwards, chances are he’ll be continuing his string of television adverts with Virgin Media and other such companies, regardless of the questionable use of the brand that he has worked so hard to build up. If he’s hoping to maintain the $32.5m salary that he’s earned in recent years, he’s going to have to do a lot more than just TV adverts!