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Cricketer Chris Wood Joins EPIC Risk Management

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Cricketer Chris Wood Joins EPIC Risk Management
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Professional Hampshire CCC cricketer Chris Wood has joined the gambling-harm minimisation consultancy EPIC Risk Management as Pro-Sport Facilitator.

Chris recently opened up about his 11-year battle with a gambling addiction, which he has battled throughout a highly successful cricketing career, having helped his county Hampshire to win four white-ball trophies since making his debut in 2010.

“I’m delighted to be joining the fantastic team here at EPIC Risk Management. After an 11-year gambling addiction, I’ve found the process of admitting to my problem and opening up about my experience a liberating one. I spent years in fear of opening up and I’m passionate to help others to speak out sooner, to seek help, and ultimately, look at ways to educate others to not get to the point I did with such a harmful addiction,” Chris Wood said.

“I have been aware of the work EPIC have done, via the fantastic work they have done with Professional Cricketers’ Association, and I’m excited to be joining an organisation who passionately work to take the problem out of gambling through education, using our own lived experience and providing advice and support. Personally, this provides me with the opportunity to enhance my recovery, working alongside some brilliant people. I’m very much looking forward to contributing,” Chris Wood added.

“This is a very significant addition to the team at EPIC Risk Management. Chris has carved out a highly successful career as a professional sportsman, winning some of the highest honours domestic cricket can offer and yet, has done so whilst battling a gambling addiction,” Paul Buck, CEO of EPIC Risk Management, said.

“We want to make athletes aware of the potentially destructive financial implications and health issues that out-of-control gambling can cause. To equip them with the knowledge and tools for them to make well-informed decisions, reducing distraction and maximising performance. To have an athlete of Chris’ standing, ability, and lived experience bringing this message to life can enhance our work, work that we passionately believe can save lives. It’s a real coup for us and for the work in reducing gambling-related harm,” Paul Buck added.

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Aristocrat CFO Julie Cameron-Doe to Depart

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Aristocrat Leisure has announced the resignation of its long-time CFO Julie Cameron-Doe, who is set to take up a similar role with US casino giant Wynn Resorts.

The company said Cameron-Doe will work through her six month notice period before taking up a new role as CFO of Wynn Resorts.

“Julie has been an exceptional partner to me and the leadership group over the past four years, as Aristocrat’s scale, diversity, resilience and cultural growth has accelerated,” Aristocrat CEO and Managing Director Trevor Croker said.

“I regret but fully respect Julie’s decision to seek a new opportunity at this time, for personal and family reasons, after many successful years with Aristocrat. I look forward to working through a smooth transition process with Julie in the coming months, and to providing an update on Julie’s successor in due course.”

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SAZKA Entertainment Rebrands as Allwyn

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SAZKA Entertainment, which operates lotteries in Austria, the Czech Republic, Greece, Cyprus and Italy, is re-branding as Allwyn.

The change comes as the Company evolves from a pan-European lottery operator into a global business.

Allwyn will retain its iconic, local brands that are cherished by both its consumers and employees and drive the continuous strong growth of the Company.

Allwyn is a lottery, entertainment and digital gaming operator, with trusted brands delivering over €16bn in wagers. Allwyn is one of Europe’s largest and fastest-growing lottery companies and its strong performance across markets is helping to fund good causes in Austria, the Czech Republic, Greece and Cyprus, and Italy.

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PokerStars Players Can “Level Up With Lex” with Innovative Personalised Poker Advice Videos

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The PokerStars community will now be able to “level up” their poker strategy and hone their poker skills with the help of one of the most well-known faces in poker and a ground-breaking innovation from PokerStars.

“Level Up With Lex” with PokerStars Ambassador Lex Veldhuis provides clear, simple and personalised poker advice videos based on a player’s real money Spin & Go game, helping to improve their skills in a safe environment and create more winning moments.

Veldhuis’ tips are highly personalised to the player and focus on improvement and education. Each piece of advice is based on data generated by PokerStars’ proprietary machine learning platform, which reads and analyses hand histories to detect mistakes. Each is therefore correct and true to the individual’s actions at the table.

“Level Up With Lex aims to help the PokerStars community develop their skills in a unique way and I’m proud to be part of this innovation. Learning poker strategy as a beginner can be challenging as there’s so many resources out there, but Level Up With Lex gives clear and simple advice that’s easy to take on board, meaning players get the most out of their time at the tables. It’s taken a lot of hard work and effort and I’m looking forward to seeing players benefitting from this technology,” PokerStars Ambassador Lex Veldhuis said.

The personalised videos can be created by opting in on “The Rail” in the PokerStars software. The videos can then be viewed on The Rail or received via email or push notification if players have their poker communication preferences enabled in “settings”.

Severin Rasset, PokerStars Managing Director & Commercial Officer, Poker, Product and Innovation, said: “Personalisation of our players’ experience and making their time with us more beneficial is at the heart of this innovation. We wanted to give our players a seamless and interesting way to improve and learn. When people are improving and progressing their skills, they generally enjoy the experience more and this is great for the game. This is the first large-scale, consumer facing use of AI for online poker and we are truly excited to bring this to our players who get the benefit of learning from Lex and one of the most sophisticated tools in online gaming.”

PokerStars recognised and invested in the potential of machine learning early on and its proprietary technologies have been active for some time. Today, they are an important tool to vigorously police poker tables to protect the integrity of the game, ensure a level playing field for all and enhance the customer experience.

Lex is one of the most well-known and successful faces in poker and has the biggest poker stream on Twitch. He has had big scores in major tournaments like the Spring Championship of Online Poker (SCOOP) and the World Championship of Online Poker (WCOOP) and has a personal record of a massive 58,543 concurrent viewers watching his stream in the 2020 SCOOP Main Event High.

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