The drugs in sport controversy has spread to rugby league's showpiece event, with a leading Australian bookmaker suspending betting on the State of Origin series.
Betstar has suspended game one and series betting on the interstate games amid fears Cronulla players in contention for selection may be stood down for the season.
There is speculation the Sharks will become the first big victim of the Australian Crime Commission's investigation into drugs in sport, with up to 14 players believed to have been told they are facing a minimum six-month ban.
Up to five current or former Sharks players are in contention for NSW selection for the upcoming series. Paul Gallen is the incumbent skipper of the club and of the state, playmaker Todd Carney is the current Blues No.6, while new recruits Luke Lewis and Michael Gordon are also likely to be considered. Former Shark Kade Snowden, now at Newcastle, has previously represented the Blues. Fairfax Media does not suggest any have acted inappropriately.
It is understood the focus of ASADA's investigations revolve around the time sports scientist Stephen Dank spent at the club in 2011. He was at Cronulla only a short while, falling out with team doctor Dave Givney. Sources said some players were concerned they were being investigated for their dealings with Dank after he left the club. Dank has repeatedly denied any wrongdoing.
Betstar Boss Alan Eskander said his agency had suspended several futures markets following the developments at Cronulla.
"We have suspended betting on Cronulla's round one game versus the Gold Coast Titans and Cronulla's season win under/over market," Eskander said.
"Most pertinently, we have suspended betting on the State of Origin series for 2013 following suggestions that up to 14 players from the Cronulla Sharks face suspension for use of a banned substance under the ASADA code, up to half a dozen of whom were considered potential State of Origin representatives in 2013.
"As a result of the ACC investigation into drugs in sport last month, we have also offered significantly less futures markets on the upcoming AFL and NRL seasons than in previous years, and consequently have smaller holds on the futures markets for both codes than we usually would at this time.
"It is imperative that our members are only offered markets that represent fair and reasonable value, and with pending investigations and whispers dogging both the AFL and NRL it was a no-brainer to reduce the offerings whilst the investigations are ongoing."
Other betting agencies contacted by Fairfax Media, including TAB Sportsbet and sportsbet.com.au, said they will continue to offer Origin markets at this stage.