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Sports Direct has been voted ‘the worst sports shop in Britain’ in a survey of nearly 11,000 shoppers.

Consumer champion website Which? asked customers about various factors influencing their shopping experience, including Covid-secure measures and returns policies.

The chain, part of the Fraser Group run by the owner of Newcastle United FC Mike Ashley, scored the lowest marks across a number of questions.

It ended up with a total of 65 out of 100 and just two stars in the ratings, putting the brand at the bottom of the table.

Sports Direct fared particularly badly on sales and returns, after the retailer was forced to change its 28-day limit during the coronavirus pandemic when customers were only supposed to leave their homes for essential reasons.

Which? said: ‘One shopper in our survey said the retailer was a last option due to its “bad returns policy”.

‘Sports Direct and other Fraser Group-owned retailers only extended their returns windows after Which? called on them to review their policies during the first lockdown.

‘The brands were originally insisting that customers post unwanted items back within 28 days of receipt, despite clear rules from the Government stating people should only leave their homes for food shopping or exercise.’

A Sports Direct spokesperson told Which?: ‘We value our customers’ opinions and are investing significant sums into improving the customer journey.’

The questionnaire to 10,909 Which? members looked at 29 online and bricks-and-mortar retailers that sold sports, cycling, exercise and related items.

Costco, Littlewoods, American Golf, House of Fraser and Debenhams were just ahead of Sports Direct at the bottom of the list.

The best-rated stores in the survey were Rohan and Sweaty Betty, with outdoor specialists Blacks and Mountain Warehouse ranked in the middle.

Rohan scored 87% and customers were impressed by its product quality, staff helpfulness and guarantees, as well as store layout.

Sweaty Betty scored 82% and there were high marks for Decathlon, Nike and Do Sport.

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