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SBK, the sportsbook app created by Smarkets, spoke to jockey ambassador Tom Bellamy after it was confirmed that Eclair Surf had made it into the Grand National as number 39 out of 40

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SBK, the sportsbook app created by Smarkets, spoke to jockey ambassador Tom Bellamy after it was confirmed that Eclair Surf had made it into the Grand National as number 39 out of 40
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  • The Emma Lavelle-trained Eclair Surf was confirmed this morning as number 39 in the list of declared runners for Saturday’s 2022 running of the Grand National, so we spoke to SBK ambassador Tom Bellamy, who will be hoping to guide the eight-year-old to victory.
  • On Eclair Surf’s recent form:
    • “He’s got a good chance. His form looks rock solid thanks to Win My Wings who won the Scottish National very well at the weekend. We gave that horse 10lbs in the Eider at Newcastle and got to within two lengths. I think Win My Wings came forward from Newcastle, whether that was fitness or she was just in a better frame of mind. The form is there in black and white though, so we go there with every chance.”
  • On how Eclair Surf will handle the Grand National test:
    • “It will go one way or the other. He will either take to it and it will define him as a horse or he won’t get away with it. He has got better as time has gone on and hopefully there aren’t any mistakes. He just lacks a bit of concentration at the odd fence. Around Aintree, the fences come up so quickly that I don’t think he’ll get a chance to think about anything other than looking forward and jumping.”
  • On who he would ride if he had a choice of all the runners:
    • “If I could ride one horse in the Grand National I would stick with the one I’ve already got in Eclair Surf. I’m very lucky to have a good ride going into the race so I really can’t wait.”
  • On his National record, and general thoughts on the race:
    • “My time in the National hasn’t been great – pulled up, fell, fell! So I’m hoping to improve on that this time. I’ve watched the National for as long as I can remember, my Dad rode in it a couple of times so I went and watched him in 2000 but it was all over by the first fence! It’s a race steeped in history and it’s great to be a part of it, and winning would be a dream. There are 40 other jockeys saying that though, not just me. Everyone wants to win the Grand National and to have a horse with a chance is very special.”
  • ​​​​​​​Eclair Surf is fifth in the current Grand National betting on SBK at 15/1, behind Delta Work and Snow Leopardess (both 9/1), Any Second Now (12/1) and Escaria Ten (14/1).
  • Meanwhile, SBK tipster Tom Collins gave his thoughts on Eclair Surf’s prospects as well as his main fancies in the race, Escaria Ten and Enjoy D’allen.
  • On Eclair Surf:
    • “It’s fantastic to see Eclair Surf get in at the foot of the handicap after a nervy wait this week, providing SBK ambassador Tom Bellamy with a ride in the Grand National. Racing fans and punters alike want to see the best horses running and Eclair Surf, who won the Classic Chase at Warwick in January before running subsequent Scottish National winner Win My Wings close in the Eider, fully deserves his place in the field. He’s officially 4lb well-in off a mark of 143 and looks a live player given his confirmed stamina.”
  • ​​​​​​​Collins’ two main Grand National selections, both of which are Irish raiders:
    • “There is little doubt in my mind that Escaria Ten is a Graded horse running in a handicap, and the Grand National has been his target all year. His jumping is impeccable and he’s weighted to win.”
    • “JP McManus purchased Enjoy D’allen after his latest run over hurdles at Leopardstown, which proves connections were trying to keep his chasing mark in the high 140s. He’s not the most prolific of performers but he’s been crying out for a stamina-sapping test.”

Gaming

Best Games to Come In 2022

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There is a common quip in the gaming and game development world that new games’ release dates are more of suggestions than a sure thing. This is because no game ever makes its initial release date. But gamers have come to terms with delays and understand that it’s part of the game development process. However, this does not keep us from getting excited about the new titles slated to be released later this year.

This piece will look at the best games you should expect before the year ends. So if you’re ready to possibly get your hopes up for no reason, keep reading to learn more.

1. God of War

God of war is a quirky game set in a world inspired by the Norse mythology and was initially released in 2005. The game has gone through a few iterations over the years, which has only improved its gameplay. The current title does an excellent job at developing its characters and establishing their backstories, pulling you into the game and engaging you even more.

In addition, the musical score does an even better job at accentuating important moments in the game. That’s why we are so excited about the new revamp slated for later on this year. We are sure the stories and music will only get better, and we don’t even need to mention the gameplay. Sony always kills it.

2. Call of Duty

When duty calls, you have to answer. This is one that never disappoints. Its action sequences are as engaging as ever, and the graphics are every graphics designer’s envy. Betway also found that playing COD helps you burn as much calories as a long walk, with a 90 minute gaming session elevating your heart rate to 90+ beats per minute and helping you burn up to 180 calories.

So you can now enjoy your gaming sessions and don’t have to worry about missing the gym. And with a new release this year, we have more than one thing to be excited about.

3. Last of Us

Another title that is excellent to play is Last of Us. It’s set in a decaying post-apocalyptic world and stars two characters—a child accompanied by an adult. However, the story is not about the dilapidated world but about these two characters and their struggle to survive this world.

This is one we hope the development gods here us and release as expected. We cross our fingers and hope it makes its release date this year.

4. A Plague’s Tale

Set in a corps-ridden world, plague-infested rats and inquisition soldiers who have it out for the two orphaned sibling protagonists. The game’s setting does an excellent job of making the main characters empathetic as you witness their struggle from a third-person perspective.

However, the gameplay is not that engaging, and the obstacles are neither challenging nor compelling. We are glad the makers are revamping this one and getting a second chance at taking another crack later this year.

5. FIFA 23

FIFA is a classic game that never disappoints. It has been a favorite for many, and FIFA 23 is expected to be the most popular iteration of the francise yet.

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2022 World Series of Poker® Hall of Fame Finalists Announced

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Following a two-week nomination period, the World Series of Poker (WSOP) has announced the highly anticipated list of ten Poker Hall of Fame nominees. Inducting one new member annually, the ten nominees will be considered by 32 living members who will allocate a ballot of ten total points to determine the 2022 Hall-of-Famer. The finalists are as follows:

 

  • Josh Arieh
  • Layne Flack
  • Bertrand “ElkY” Grospellier
  • Kathy Liebert
  • Mike Matusow
  • Lon McEachern & Norman Chad
  • Michael Mizrachi
  • Brian Rast
  • Matt Savage
  • Isai Scheinberg

 

There are three new finalists in the 2022 class including four-time WSOP bracelet winner, Josh Arieh, and Las Vegas residents Kathy Liebert and Brian Rast.

 

The induction ceremony will be held on Sunday, July 10 in tandem with the final table of the Main Event at Bally’s & Paris Las Vegas. All living Poker Hall of Fame members are invited to freeroll into the $1,979 No-Limit Hold’em tournament, with the buy-in priced in honor of the Hall of Fame’s founding year. This event will be open to all players. Each participating Hall of Famer will have a bounty corresponding to the year they were inducted into poker’s most exclusive club. The 2022 inductee will be announced during the event.

 

For more information on the Poker Hall of Fame, visit http://www.wsop.com/pokerhalloffame/.

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QTech Games bolsters its offering with CQ9 Gaming integration

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Emerging-markets leader extends its premier portfolio with more top slots from an emerging Asian force in multiplayer video content

QTech Games, the number-one games distributor across all emerging markets, has announced its latest premium partnership with Asian video content and slots supplier, CQ9 Gaming.

Under the terms of the new agreement, CQ9 Gaming’s GLI-certified portfolio – comprising top-quality slots, arcade, and table casino games – has been integrated for QTech Games clients and their players, providing another cutting edge to a powerhouse platform recognised for bringing the finest online games to market across developing territories.

Popular CQ9 titles include Good Fortune, 1945, Kronos, Zeus, Lucky Fishing, and many others which harness the appeal of multiplayer fish games, arcade games, not to mention multiplayer online board and card games. This ever-evolving production line will help QTech Games strengthen its comprehensive spread of gaming verticals, central to QTech ONE™, its definitive one-stop shop for global operators.

The deal organically broadens CQ9 Gaming’s global footprint, accessing a fresh scope of growth markets for accelerated expansion. As the fastest-growing distributor over the past few years, QTech’s platform is localised for each region with native mobile apps, robust reporting and marketing tools, and 24/7 local-language support.

Ulf Norder, CCO at QTech Games, said: “We’re excited to be teaming up with CQ9 Gaming whose stunning graphics and gameplay chart near the pinnacle of the marketplace. The QTech Games platform is equipped with the best games from the world’s leading suppliers – and CQ9 now joins this branching tree.

“CQ9 Gaming may only be a young company, but they’ve already managed to build a strong fan-base in Asia and are moving on to conquer previously untapped markets in Europe and LatAm. Their titles run off an agile HTML5 gaming engine, meaning that you can access them either via desktop or mobile devices, even if the casino doesn’t currently offer a dedicated mobile app.

“Wherever you set your scene in this ever-changing landscape, our platform champions a mobile-first mantra, packed with all the best localised games that cater to varied cultural tastes. By way of instructive example, if you don’t offer the fish game in China, there’s no chance of becoming successful. And it’s a similar story with the Andar Bahar in India. CQ9 understand the demand for regional specificity throughout Asia and beyond, making them a logical and long-term ally with which to team up.”

A CQ9 spokesperson added: “This deal significantly broadens CQ9 Gaming’s international influence, opening up ‘margin’ markets from Eastern Europe and Latin America for diversified growth.

“CQ9 is one of the leading video slot suppliers in the Asian market with more than 100 titles under our belt. We’re steadily working on extending that reach and establishing ourselves in Europe and CIS-facing territories, and QTech’s broad spread of emerging-markets access means we can achieve this with dexterity while also consolidating our existing Asia-facing audience.

“Our goal has always been to design intuitive and interactive live-dealer experiences that are customised for every generation of mobile end-user. Since QTech Games is a defining distributor across Asia and other unexploited regions, we can’t wait to see how our games connect with different and diverse player profiles.

“At a time of refined localization techniques, QTech Games is really delivering on their brand promise of customising high-class content for varied cultures. This is what keeps them at the forefront of relevance for all kinds of players in the bubbling melting-pot of emerging markets.”

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