A takeover bid for the Rebel Sport retail chain may fail, according to industry sources.

Five directors of the sports retailer had agreed to sell all or part of their shares and Rebel Sport had urged shareholders to accept a $52m takeover offer from Harvey Norman.

But Harvey Norman's chief financial officer, John Skippen, has said the retailer's offer will not be increased and the bid could fail.

Mr Skippen said a number of directors on the Rebel board had stated that they would accept the bid for a proportion of their shareholdings but he had not seen the acceptances.

He said that if shareholders accepted for just half their shareholdings, then the bid would definitely fail.