ACCC investigates Boomers-USA complaints

ACCC has received complaints over seating and line-up at the Aust-USA basketball game in Melbourne.
ACCC has received complaints over seating and line-up at the Aust-USA basketball game in Melbourne.

The consumer watchdog is investigating whether basketball fans were misled by promoters about seating and the stars on show at a much-hyped Australia-USA game in Melbourne.

Fans - including Hollywood star Russell Crowe - complained on social media about views from sections of Marvel Stadium - usually used for football - for the pre-World Cup friendly on Thursday night.

Before the game, the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission had already received hundreds of complaints from ticketholders who claimed to have been misled about which players were involved and wanted refunds.

"We've now added to that investigation whether or not consumers have been misled over the seating and the quality of the seating," ACCC chair Rod Sims told reporters in Sydney on Friday.

"We take allegations of misleading behaviour very serious and the penalties for breaching the Consumer Act are significant."

Mr Sims said the matter was complicated but involved a lot of consumers and the number of ticketholders ringing to complain was high.

"They were angry and wanted a refund," he said.

"We can well understand that if something is advertised with certain elite players ... if you don't have the key players that could well significantly affect whether you're still interested in attending."

Both the promoters and ticket sellers were aware of the ACCC's investigation, he said.

Crowe tweeted a video from his courtside seat, which cost $1500, on Thursday night - labelling it a joke.

"If you weren't among 50,000 there and you chose to watch it on TV at home, good decision," he wrote.

"The only thing achieved tonight by @BasketballAus was enjoining with the promoters in ripping off well meaning lovers of the sport. It was a farce."

Australian Associated Press