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Distinguished Judging Panel Announced to Select This Year’s William Hill Sports Book of the Year Award Winner

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The most prestigious literary prize in the sporting world has announced its esteemed judging panel. Comprising six highly respected individuals, the distinguished panel will be responsible for selecting the William Hill Sports Book of the Year shortlist and ultimately crowning the award’s 35th winner.

The award is one of the most esteemed literary honours in the sporting arena and is the world’s most valuable sports-writing prize. Established in 1989, it recognises and celebrates outstanding writing across a wide range of genres.

Alyson Rudd (pictured) will lead the panel as Chair for the fifth year running. As an acclaimed award-winning sports journalist at The Times with a deep passion for the written word having overseen the paper’s Book Group, a qualified football coach and referee and author of two sports books and two novels, Alyson’s extensive experience in the field makes her an ideal choice to guide the panel in their quest to identify the finest sports book of the year.

Joining Alyson on the panel are five renowned personalities, each bringing their unique expertise and perspective to the selection process:

Dame Heather Rabbatts will make her inaugural appearance on the panel this year. She is renowned for her ground-breaking accomplishments in the field of sports administration and broadcasting and her commitment to diversity and inclusivity has been widely recognised. As the first woman to hold the position of Director of the Football Association, she has been instrumental in driving positive change within the industry. Her profound understanding of the sports landscape and dedication to excellence will provide valuable support to the other judges in their deliberations.

Also joining the panel for the first time is Elis James. As a prominent sports podcaster, presenter and comedian, Elis infuses humour and wit into his analysis of various sports. His ability to engage and entertain audiences will undoubtedly give a refreshing perspective to the judging panel.

Michelle Walder has re-joined the judging panel for a second year. As a Brighton and Hove Albion FC non-executive board member and chair of Brighton and Hove Albion Women’s FC, Michelle has a wealth of experience in the sporting industry alongside running her own business specialising in leadership and coaching since 2004.

Accomplished broadcaster, writer and journalist Mark Lawson also joins the panel once again. As a critic and feature writer for The Guardian and theatre critic of The Tablet, Mark has a profound appreciation for the art of storytelling. He was the first presenter of Radio 4’s Front Row and has written six books. In 2006, he described becoming a William Hill Sports Book of the Year judge as one of his greatest ambitions in sport.

Former professional footballer-turned-broadcaster Clarke Carlisle brings his unique perspective as an athlete and commentator to the judging panel. His football career spanned almost two decades and all four top-flight divisions and, as a regular ITV football pundit and co-commentator, his deep understanding of the inner workings of the sporting world will provide valuable insight during the selection process. Clarke is also no stranger to the award with his first appearance as a judge back in 2012 but stood down in 2013 to write his autobiography A Footballer’s Life, which reached the 2014 longlist.

Following a rigorous process that reviews all entries to produce a longlist, the judging panel will evaluate each one to reveal the award shortlist. Finally, the panel will crown the overall winner of the 35th William Hill Sports Book of the Year Award at an official award ceremony on November 30 at BAFTA, 195 Piccadilly, London, ensuring that only the most exceptional sports book receives this prestigious accolade.

Chair of the Judging Panel, Alyson Rudd, said: “I am truly honoured to serve as Chair of Judging for the William Hill Sports Book of the Year Award once again. The award celebrates the power of storytelling and, whilst sport is a huge field, entries are quite intimate and stories very personal.

“The award has a long-standing tradition of celebrating first-class sports writing and I’m excited to be leading our new and diverse judging panel as we preside over exceptional stories and the authors who bring these tales to life.”

The longlist will be revealed on September 28, with the shortlist being announced on October 26. The winner will be declared on November 30 and will receive a cash prize of £30,000. All shortlisted authors will each receive £3,000 and a specially produced leather-bound copy of their book.

Last year, Beryl: In Search of Britain’s Greatest Athlete, Beryl Burton, from Jeremy Wilson (pictured) scooped the 2022 award.

For more information about the William Hill Sports Book of the Year Award, please visit: https:// news.williamhill .com/sport/sports-book-of-the-year/.

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MGA Games launches its Seasonal Collection starting with, Jokers Lovers

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MGA Games, a leading company that specialises in developing localised slot games for worldwide operators, has finally launched its much-awaited Seasonal Collection. As announced in the previous edition of the MGA Games Day, the company has prepared an array of new features for 2024, which includes the introduction of a new collection of slot games on globally recognized and celebrated dates.

One of these new slot games, Jokers Lovers, is presented in February, the month of love and Valentine’s Day. The 5-reel slot game invites players into a romantic and mysterious world with the Joker characters as the main protagonists. It promises to be an enjoyable experience for all players who try it out.

With 243 prize combinations, Jokers Lovers immerses players in a world of entertainment, where the classic casino symbols, such as fruits and letters, are mixed with the Jokers Wild and Free Spins symbols, to create exciting winning combinations.

In addition, the slot game features the new, Wild Night, which, randomly, turns up to a maximum of 4 reels into a Wild symbol.

The game features Free Spins that come with explosions and a prize multiplier that increases with every reel spin win, going up to a maximum of x5.

With dynamic gameplay and charming design, this new production is destined to make players fall in love.

 

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Germany Becomes Latest Jurisdiction to Partner with TPD

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Deal with German Tote sees race tracking and data monetisation available across thoroughbred and harness tracks in Germany

German Tote has selected Total Performance Data (TPD), the world’s leading live horse racing data provider, for race tracking and data monetisation across all 19 thoroughbred racecourses and several harness tracks, starting at Berlin’s Hoppegarten for the beginning of its turf season in late March.

German Tote recognises the numerous ways in which horse tracking can enrich the sport, with live running orders displayed on racecourse big screens a significant aspect of its appeal. TPD is also tasked with providing data feeds and in-play odds to bolster engagement and betting turnover.

In addition to showcasing live race graphics, German racing punters will gain insights from state-of-the-art sectional timing and stride data that TPD delivers.

The deal means that renowned races such as the Deutsches Derby and the Grosser Preis von Berlin will now join prestigious events like the Dubai World Cup, Ascot, the St Leger, Melbourne Cup and Breeders’ Cup within the comprehensive racing data portfolio of TPD and follows the news of the recent announcement of the merger between TPD and Australasia’s largest live racing data company, tripleSdata.

“After a careful review and trials of different systems, like many others, we chose TPD,” the Managing Director for German Tote, Riko Luiking, said. “It has a great system, significant experience and represents value for money. We have also been impressed with its hardware partner, GMax, who is already underway and expecting to have all 19 racecourses live by August.”

“We’re so pleased to welcome German Tote and German racing after over a year of work between both teams,” the Chief Executive Officer for TPD, Will Duff Gordon, said. “It’s important to produce in-race performance metrics to boost interest in German horse racing, especially its classics, with breeders, punters and horsemen ready to act on the content.

“On the back of our recent merger with tripleSdata, it’s great to keep up the momentum as we surpass 120 worldwide racecourses.”

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Issuance of Common Bond Loan

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The Athens Stock Exchange welcomed today representatives of the Management team, senior executives, and partners of INTRALOT on the occasion of the commencement of trading of its corporate bond on the Main Market of the Athens Stock Exchange. INTRALOT’s Chairman and CEO, Sokratis Kokkalis, declared the commencement of trading by ringing the traditional bell.
Mr. Yianos Kontopoulos, CEO of the Athens Exchange Group, welcomed INTRALOT’s Management team and highlighted the company’s successful Public Offering, from its entry into the Parallel Market of the Athens Stock Exchange in 1999 to the present day: “INTRALOT’s journey to the Athens Stock Exchange began 25 years ago, in November 1999, when the company was listed on our Parallel Market with a market capitalization of approximately €220 million. Today, with a market capitalization of €720 million, it is one of the companies listed on the Main Market. Since last November, INTRALOT has been included in the composition of the FTSE/Athex Mid Cap Index with the highest participation (12.2%) among the 20 companies in the index. With the successful completion of a €135 million share capital increase in October 2023 and today’s issuance of its €130 million corporate bond, INTRALOT is demonstrating its confidence in the important role the stock market can play as a lever to raise capital for business development.”
The Chairman and CEO of INTRALOT, Mr. Sokratis Kokkalis stated: “INTRALOT is a company that produces technology in Greece and has been operating successfully for many years in a highly competitive global environment, including the US, where we have had a strong presence for twenty years. I would like to thank the Greek investment community that participated in the recent Bond Issue and everyone who contributed to this success. Our company is moving forward, focusing on growth opportunities and strategic partnerships that leverage our extensive experience and proven next-generation technology in a digital world.”
On her part, the Vice-Chair of the Hellenic Capital Market Commission, Mrs. Natassa Stamou, noted: “During its 25 years on the Athens Stock Exchange, INTRALOT has always confirmed the value of being listed on the stock exchange, using the financial tools available and raising capital through the issuance of shares and bonds for the benefit of investors and the market. INTRALOT’s outward-looking
approach and presence in various jurisdictions highlights and promotes the potential of raising capital in Greece. The successful issuance of its bond is further evidence of INTRALOT’s strong confidence in the Greek economy and market.

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