Stanley Ho’s secret weapon

Is the game up for Macau’s 80-year-old casino billionaire? Don’t bet on it. Watch the share price of his Hong Kong-listed company – and the performance of his glamorous socialite daughter, Pansy

By: William Mellor

IT’S tempting to write off Stanley Ho. Last year, the old man turned 80 without naming an heir and having just threatened to disinherit his daughter, Pansy, the most senior ranking family member in his business empire. Then on March 31, after 40 years, he officially lost the fabulously lucrative Macau gaming monopoly that made him a multi-billionaire. Soon, he will be competing against two of Las Vegas’s most successful gaming tycoons, who are pledging to plough more than $1.6 billion into rival casinos in the former Portuguese colony.

Adding to his problems, monopoly-bred complacency means Ho’s operations now look embarrassingly old-fashioned. Macau’s government and its Beijing masters want a wholesome form of gaming-based tourism that will lure families and convention business as well as hard-core punters. One of Ho’s Las Vegas rivals, tycoon Sheldon Adelson’s Galaxy Casinos, will offer an indoor version of Venice’s Grand Canal complete with singing gondoliers. The other, Steve Wynn of Wynn’s Resorts, is pledging to create “a Disney for adults”. By contrast, Stanley Ho’s 10 casinos exude unadorned sleaze.

At the packed tables at Ho’s flagship Hotel Lisboa, there is desperation not fantasy and glamour. Triad loan sharks circle the punters, ready to bail out losers with loans that rack up interest by the hour. Outside, a globalised prostitution industry – Thais, Filipinas, Vietnamese, mainland Chinese, even peroxide-haired Poles – UFA operates out the hotel’s shopping mall and guest rooms eager to relieve punters of what the croupiers already haven’t. At the Lisboa’s star cabaret attraction, the Crazy Paris show, big-bosomed, cellulite-buttocked semi-nude Russian dancers attempt, pitifully, to reprise Nicole Kidman’s performance in the film Moulin Rouge before bemused audiences of Chinese tourists.

Meanwhile, one of Ho’s oldest business partners, the politically powerful Henry Fok, has announced he wants out and will sell his 27 percent stake in the secretive Sociedade de Turismo e Diversoes de Macau (STDM), the privately-held company Ho set up in 1962 to run his Macau empire. Time, then, for Ho to call it quits and retire to his mansion overlooking Hong Kong’s Repulse Bay to enjoy family life with his 17 children from four wives? Perhaps not. Amid the hype surrounding what the Macanese refer to as the Second Handover, something surprising has been happening to the one Stanley Ho company in which the public can invest, Hong Kong-listed Shun Tak Holdings. Its shares have taken off. And the family member Ho has put in charge of running it, 39-year-old Pansy, is not only now reconciled with her father, but also looking increasingly likely to become his successor. And, just possibly, a serious rival to the Las Vegas interlopers. “I have to take the initiative,” Pansy Ho told me in an exclusive interview. “A lot of people are depending on me.”

Shun Tak, a mid-cap company that does not feature on the benchmark Hang Seng index, owns only five percent of STDM, the private company through which Ho operates his casinos. But it is massively involved in the former Portuguese colony.

Its shipping division, which operates one of the world’s largest fleets of high-speed jet foils, virtually monopolises (92 percent market share) the ferry services that ply 24 hours a day between Hong Kong and Macau. It owns the sole helicopter service on the same route. It has controlling stakes in two of Macau’s best hotels, the Mandarin Oriental and the Westin Resort, and has so many tourism-related joint ventures with STDM that the two companies’ fortunes are inextricably entwined. In 1994, during a boom year for Macau tourism, Shun Tak’s shares peaked at HK$9.40 (US$1.20) before plunging in value by 95 percent over the next four years. As recently as last September, they were trading at just HK$0.75.

So the ending of the casino monopoly, and disclosure that Ho will be challenged by two of Las Vegas’s most outstanding entrepreneurs, might have been expected to precipitate a further fall. Instead, in February Shun Tak’s shares shot up by almost 50 percent. And a flurry of analysts’ reports in recent weeks suggest that is just the beginning.

“Shun Tak is massively undervalued,” declared Eric Yuen of Hong Kong-based Dao Heng Securities in a February 22 report that noted that even after the price surge, the company’s shares were still trading at a 60 percent discount to its book value. Yuen predicts the share price could rise another 30-45 percent. JP Morgan analyst Matthew Mo, sees similar upside, as does Raymond Jook of E2 Capital Holdings, who said last month that the deep share price discount compared to the company’s net asset value was unjustified.

What makes these analysts and investors who are pumping money into Shun Tak so optimistic? The answer in part is that they all believe that far from being put out of business by his new rivals, the still-sprightly Ho will in some ways benefit from the competition.

Aldelson’s Galaxy, which operates the Venetian casino in Las Vegas, has pledged to invest $1.1 billion in Macau to build a casino and trade and convention centre on Taipa Island, complete with a Venice street, canal and those gondoliers. Wynn is promising “no less than” $500 million to be spent on two casino-based entertainment complexes. Ho himself has been forced to commit $585 million over five years to upgrade his operations. That means an extra $2.2 billion-plus being pumped into a tiny territory with a population of just 460,000.

Tourism numbers that topped 10 million last year are set to rise significantly, analysts say. And even though Ho could lose a big slice of his casino profits, he has so many other businesses in Macau that he cannot fail to also profit from the resulting economic growth, they contend. Indeed, even if you don’t gamble at Ho’s casinos, it is virtually impossible to visit Macau without putting money into the old man’s pockets. Through STDM, Shun Tak and another company, Florinda Hotels, Ho owns virtually every hotel in Macau. And in addition to his stranglehold on the 65-kilometre sea route across the Pearl River delta that is the main gateway to Macau, Ho is also the largest shareholder in the territory’s airport and airline, Air Macau.

He controls the largest department store, New Yaohan, one of the territory’s biggest banks, Seng Heng, horse and dog racing tracks and is a player in virtually all the major real estate and infrastructure developments. His company even has the contract to dredge Macau harbour of the Pearl River silt deposits that would otherwise choke it. Such is his influence that in 1998 he became the first living Macau resident to have a street named after him. And little wonder. He employs 12,000 Macanese and the gaming taxes he pays account for 61 percent of the territory’s GDP.

True, publicly-listed Shun Tak is far from being a pure Macau play. It also benefits from property development in HK, notably the Belchers residential and commercial complex on Hong Kong Island and Liberte in Kowloon. Both these projects are joint ventures with the real estate giant Sun Hung Kai Holdings run by the billionaire Kwok brothers and, despite Hong Kong’s property slump, are tipped to start earning serious money from apartment sales this year. But as JP Morgan’s Mo notes: “While the short-term prospect for Shun Tak Holdings would depend on the response to the property development sale, on a medium to long-term horizon, the new gaming licences in Macau hold the key.”

More crucial, though, is who will be running Ho’s company once the founder finally leaves the scene. Until now, Ho has acted as if he is immortal and has yet to name a successor. “He never speaks of it, and because of his age I have never felt it proper to ask,” Ho’s long-time trusted aide, Julie de Senna Fernandez, told me recently.

Despite a hip replacement, Ho still indulges his passion for ballroom dancing and tennis and three years ago, at age 77, sired his 17th child by his fourth wife, Angela Leung, a glamorous mainland-born former dancing instructor. As a manager, he remains hands on. Last year, when I asked Ho’s nephew, Hotel Lisboa general manager Alan Ho, 54, how long he had been in charge of the family’s Florinda Hotels group, he replied drily: “When you work for Dr Ho, there’s no such thing as being the boss. His presence is felt in every part of his empire.”

But Ho’s investment plans to thwart the Las Vegas challenge have a five-year time frame. Could he possibly still be running the group at age 85? That’s where Pansy Ho, 39, comes in. Until recently, the idea of the petite Pansy taking control of one of Asia’s toughest businesses would have seemed ludicrous to most observers, even to his closest aides.

For a start, Pansy is only the fifth child (by Ho’s second wife, Lucilla). In Hong Kong, she is still better known as a party girl than a business woman. And as recently as two years ago, Ho threatened to disinherit her after she split with her husband and began a liaison with playboy Gilbert Yeung, the son of Albert Yeung, a business rival of Ho.

But unnoticed outside the Ho family, Pansy has quietly been trying to extricate herself from the gossip columns and into the business pages. The boyfriend is now history. And a closer examination of her personality, achievements and vision for Macau suggest she might, just might, be able to give Steve Wynn and Sheldon Adelson a run for their money. Says Julie Fernandez: “Of all the children, Pansy is the one most like her father. She has his determination and strength.”

Stanley Ho, who inherited nothing from his father, appears not yet convinced. While avoiding throwing any more light on the succession, he did offer me a brief appraisal of Pansy’s performance to date. “I am confident in her abilities, but I believe there is always room for improvement,” he said late last year. “Should you ask me how many marks she deserves now, I say 80. She has to work harder and keep improving herself to win the other 20 marks from me.”

Pansy certainly has some achievements to her name. A graduate of Santa Clara University in what is now Silicon Valley, Pansy at first showed no interest in joining the family business. Instead, with a partner, she set up a high society events promotion company.

Then, in the mid-1990s, Shun Tak’s share price started to collapse and its shipping revenues fall. Pansy and a younger sister, Daisy, who worked in Shun Tak on the finance side, decided their ageing father needed Pansy’s marketing skills in the listed company. Soon promoted to general manager of Shun Tak, Pansy negotiated a $200 million merger with a rival fast ferry company that also operated the Hong Kong-Macau route. The deal was highly successful for Shun Tak. It ended up with 71 percent of a joint venture controlling what has become one of the world’s most profitable shipping routes.

That earned Pansy further promotion to managing director, where she turned her attention to Shun Tak’s then-troubled property division, turning that around also. In 2000, Shun Tak’s profits rose 8.6 percent to $35 million on a turnover of $422 million. Profit in the first half of 2001 fell slightly, but Dao Heng analyst Yuen believes the full-year result, to be announced this month will be good. “The final dividend could be a positive surprise and convince investors that Shun Tak is a sustainable, high-yield stock,” says Yuen.

But Pansy’s biggest challenge remains in front of her. And her vision for Macau is similar to that of the Macau government and her new Las Vegas rivals. “I have to admit Macau is sleazy,” she says of her father’s creation. “It must become family-friendly and conducive to corporate activity.”

So far, she appears to be practising what she preaches. In November, she completed her biggest Macau project, constructing the $150 million, 338-metre tall Macau Tower Convention and Entertainment Centre.. While Galaxy’s Adelson talks of completing his trade and convention centre in three or four years, Pansy’s admitted smaller version is already in place.

But given Stanley Ho’s notorious hands-on style, and the fact that he remains chairman of Shun Tak as well as STDM, how much power does Pansy Ho have to further sanitise her father’s Macau operations? As a young woman, she deferred to him when he asked her to take a business degree instead of a liberal arts course. She even took it on the chin when he publicly demanded she end her relationship with Gilbert Yeung – “I was very upset and disappointed and hurt but he was defending his own business.” But now she says she stands up to him in the board room when she believes he is wrong: “It’s my duty – whether it pleases him or not.”

Really? Technopreneur Alex Kong, CEO of Asia TravelMart, a Malaysian online company that operates a joint venture internet travel business with Shun Tak, confirms her independence at Shun Tak. “She calls the shots,” he told me.

But will she ultimately inherit the entire empire? Other family members also work in various Ho companies. Sisters Daisy and Maisy are both also on the board of Shun Tak and brother-in-law Peter Kjaer, who is married to a daughter by Stanley’s first marriage, runs Dr Ho.com, an online casino. Son Laurence, 25, operates an online financial services company and Ho’s 40-year-old fourth wife, Angela, is said to be a shrewd and ambitious businesswoman. Angela and Pansy are reputed to have had a strained relationship in the past, although a highly-placed source says: “At least now they talk.”

When asked about the succession, Pansy, perhaps sensitive to family politics, talks diplomatically of her father having many years ahead of him and that when the time finally comes, there will be many good people in the group able to work together to ensure a successful transition. But when it is suggested to her that she might not be interested in moving from Shun Tak to take over the gaming empire, she responds quickly that that is not the case. “It’s just a business,” she told me. “But I have a different vision.”

As Stanley Ho contemplates the biggest battle of his long and colourful career, Pansy’s vision may be the secret weapon that ensures the family’s corporate survival.


Ligaz11 Review of Gambling for a Living

David Sklansky and Mason Malmuth have produced some of the most important and thought provoking books ever written on gambling. Whenever they produce a new work, I almost invariably buy it sight unseen. This book works as well, although it’s not quite what I expected.

I really expected the book to cover what the professional gambler would need to know in order to profit in their profession on a day to day basis. For example, I thought I might find advice on what times of the day the loosest middle and upper limit poker games would be played, how specifically to sacrifice a little expectation to lower variance, how to deal with W2G forms and gambling taxes, etc.. I really expected the book to be aimed at the already skilled gambler who is considering making this a full time occupation.

Instead, the book aims a bit lower. It is not assumed that the aspiring professional blackjack player already knows how to count cards, or even basic strategy. Nor is it assumed that the aspiring professional poker player knows how to calculate pot odds or knows what a good Texas Hold’em starting hand looks like. I understand the editorial decision to include this information in this book, but it means that there’s a lot less meat here than one would expect. I sure wouldn’t have minded a paragraph at the beginning of the blackjack chapter, for example, that said, “First, go read two of the following books, then come back and read this chapter,” and then less background and more new material, but I guess that isn’t good business.

The first section is on blackjack. To be honest, there isn’t a lot new here that doesn’t already appear in other sources. Some of the information is made more up to date here, which is good, but the well read blackjack player won’t find any new deep secrets here.

The next two sections, which I’ll lump together here, are on sports and ligaz11 betting. Admittedly, these are subjects I know little about, so the information here was interesting to me, although it may be well known to those who participate more often. The authors focus not on traditional handicapping techniques, but what mathematical circumstances might indicate when a particular team, horse, or combination might be undervalued by the oddsmakers. I don’t know if this information by itself is sufficient to make money at sports or horse wagering, but it is interesting nonetheless.

Section four is on slot and video poker playing while section seven is on casino tournaments. Again, nothing new is here and aspiring pros would be much better served by reading other definitive works in this area. There is an interesting description of how modern slot machines work, but as far as the professional gambler is concerned stating, “One can’t know what the true odds are of any slot combination coming up, therefore one can never know when one might have an advantage, so the professional gambler should never play slot machines,” is sufficient as far as the topic of this book is concerned.

Sections five and six are on usually unbeatable games and casino promotions. These sections are about mistakes the casinos make in calculating payouts, how to recognize them, and then how to take advantage of them. While material like this has been presented elsewhere, it has never been presented definitively, and these sections make a good addition to what has already been written. If one wants to take advantage of these situations, one does have to keep their eyes open. Nonetheless, taking a second look at a game’s payout takes little time, and there might be a pleasant surprise.

The eighth section is on poker, the subject the authors know best. Even though both Sklansky and Malmuth have been generally successful as gamblers at many games, this is their bread and butter. Unfortunately, the section reads more as an introduction to their other fine books than as any new contribution. There’s little more to be written on how to play various poker games, the authors have already written pretty definitive works on these topics, so I would have liked to have seen more advice on how to be successful at poker when you’re not playing. What should one look for in a game that makes it good? What should one be doing away from the table to help improve one’s game? These are issues that have not been dealt with definitively, and this book could have benefited from a thorough discussion of them.

The book ends with a section titled, “Putting It All Together”, an appendix on probability and a second appendix on suggested reading. There are some interesting topics in this last section, and, frankly, I wish more of the book had been like this. The appendix on probability is obligatory and serviceable. The appendix on recommended reading is good, in my opinion the recommendations are quite sound.

As a whole, the book is good and worth reading, but I can’t help but feel a little disappointed. If viewed as an outline on what one needs to learn before one can become a professional gambler, it works quite well. However, there’s another book that can be written covering some of the more fundamental questions about how one goes about pursuing this enterprise on a day to day basis. I have to admit I was hoping this book would have been it.


Aimed at the individual who enjoys gambling and is thinking about becoming a professional but hasn’t studied the games seriously, this book, while far from the best efforts of Sklansky and Malmuth, is satisfactory. I would have like to have seen the book be more of an operational handbook for the professional gambler and less of a study outline for what one ought to know. The well read gambler will find enough information of value here to make the purchase of the book worthwhile, but might feel a little bit disappointed in the lack of depth.

ปั่นสล็อตเว็บไหนดี pantipv

Video ปั่นสล็อตเว็บไหนดี pantip Poker Playing Tips

The two techniques that are mandatory to becoming an educated and prepared video poker player are:

1) how to read a pay schedule with additional education to know the difference between short/partial pay and full-pay versions, and

2) strategies for all the VP types/games.


In a grouping of video poker machines, known as banks or carousels, all of which may look exactly the same, casinos will often ‘mix-in’ several VP machines with inferior pay programs (short/partial pay). Most often in such a bank of regular non-progressive, non-bonus VP machines, only 1 or 2 may be the Jacks or better 9/6 (nine coins for a full house, and 6 coins for a flush), while the rest are 8/5, 7/5, or even worse, 6/5.

This means that one player, on the 9/6 machine, will be winning more for the same hands than the other players. A 9/6 VP will generally hit the royal flush each 40,000 hands played, or every 80-100 hours of play, while the 8/5 each 45,000 hands, on average; the 7/5’s each 50,000 hands; and the 6/5’s only once about each 70,000 hands played.

If you bet 5 coins, all winning hands are paid out multiplied by a factor of 5, except for the royal flush. This is a bonus amount designed as an incentive to play five coins. All those players who play less than maximum coins are setting up the best payoffs for those who do.

Two of my favorite Video Poker versions follow with corresponding strategies:


Full-pay Deuces Wild Versions will be 9/5’s as you scan down the one coin payout line — 9 coins for a straight flush and 5 coins for 4-of-a-kind. Except in Nevada, most casinos offer 4 coins for 4-of-a-kind, the short-pay version.

Some players are reluctant to throw away five cards, but that is a most important strategy; you want to make room for additional card(s) that could be a deuce(s), and holding that ace or king is not going to help you if the next hand coming up could be four or five sevens. Here’s the reason for the reluctancy.

Die hard Jacks or Better players will throw away complete hands-5 cards only 3% of the time, while Deuces Wild players almost 20% of the time — nearly every fifth hand.

Do not keep two pairs. Select one or the other, as 3-of-a-kind is the minimum scheduled payout.

Inside straights should be held, if presenting the best possible return from your initial five cards dealt. Therefore, a 5, 6, 8, 9 hand can produce a 7 or wild card in this VP version.

Strategies ปั่นสล็อตเว็บไหนดี pantip for this VP version are determined by the number of deuces or absence of deuces that are dealt in your initial hand.

Approximately every 5000 hands will hit four deuces — a secondary jackpot that will keep you in the game or allow you to pocket some winnings.

Percentages speak for themselves, good reason to practice correct strategy for this 100%+ full-pay game


The excitement of all or nothing in Deuces makes it a thrilling, and “wild” game. You can go for stretches without seeing one Deuce, then hit a Royal with Deuces, and four-of-a-kind is easy to get; what a roller coaster ride!


First up, and most important, the full-pay Jokers Wild (JW) pay schedules will be 7/5 machines, 7 coins for a full house and 5 coins for a flush. There are two versions out there: one returns money on a pair of Kings or better, the other requires at least two pair before there is a payout.

The former is the more desirable full-pay version.

These strategies for Jokers, unlike Jacks+, reflect the wild card, a 53-card deck, and the different payouts. This game is almost as volatile as Deuces Wild, where original 5 cards dealt are discarded more often than Jacks+.

If you do not hold the joker, keep three cards to a royal over a pair of aces or kings because of the higher payout. You could catch another ace or king and still be paid.

If three cards are consecutive cards for a straight flush, i.e., 5, 6, 7 of hearts, discard other cards even a small pair, for the higher payback. If not consecutive, keep the small pair.

Don’t be afraid to hold the joker alone. More than 3% of the time, you won’t be able to connect with a straight, flush, straight flush, or a high pair; however, holding the joker only can give you four new cards, and a win.

They don’t throw you out of a casino as they do Blackjack counters but the casino can and will shut down machines that have been hammered for wins, and take it away. Those “temporarily out of service” signs do not necessarily mean a slot mechanic is on the way, rather this VP is headed for the dumpster, and permanently out of service.

Togel Singapore

Judi Bola Online Gambling is Where the Money’s At

A New research from independent market analysts Datamonitor reveals that the online and iTV gambling market is set to boom over the next few years. Combined revenues from both in the U.S. and Europe are predicted to grow from an estimated $6.7bn in 2001 to $20.8bn in 2005.

Online gambling: a discrete but massive market

While many B2C sites struggle to get out of the red, online gambling sites are quietly turning comfortable profits. According to Datamonitor, online gambling companies will generate revenues of $6.6bn in 2001. Growth will continue unabated to reach $13.6bn in 2005. The number of online gamblers in Europe and the US will grow from 2.9 million in 2001 to 7.4 million in 2005.

American consumers have rapidly adopted to this new form of gambling and the US is the biggest market. Despite legal uncertainties regarding the legality of gambling, its 1.9 million online gamblers are currently earning this business an estimated $4.2bn in revenues.

The European market is beginning to develop, and the U.K. is spearheading its growth. And despite the fact that online gambling is still prohibited in some countries, many European consumers have started to gamble on sites that appeal to them with country-specific offerings. Furthermore, the gradual entry of established bookmakers into the online gambling industry is building up the credibility and reputation of this market.

“Despite adverse conditions due to legal restrictions, the online Togel Singapore gambling market is thriving,” said Jacob Hayler, gambling analyst, Datamonitor plc. “This shows the strong appeal of this content with consumers. The dot-com crash has led many to think of the Internet as an unprofitable medium. This clearly does not apply to online gambling.”

iTV gambling is off to a flying start

Gambling will soon be reaching out to a massive audience and into an environment, the living room, ideally suited for entertainment purposes. The advent of interactive television (iTV) means that the gambling industry now has the potential to target a very attractive audience — the armchair sport fans.

As iTV replaces analog TV, the arrival of gambling services on this platform will hold much potential for the gambling industry. Furthermore, enhanced TV technologies are gradually enabling companies to overlay gambling services with live events. Sports betting, followed by lotteries, will be the most popular major form of gambling on iTV. Casinos are unlikely to be featured on iTV gambling services as they do not fit in with the family image that iTV network providers want to promote.

The U.K. and France are currently the only countries where iTV gambling has been rolled out. Although still in its infancy, just one year running, iTV gambling is already showing strong signs of growth. Datamonitor estimates that in 2001 alone, the European market will be worth $130mn, skyrocketing to a predicted $7.1bn in 2005.

Datamonitor expects that other European countries will phase in these services, in light of their success in the U.K. and France. However, due to legal restrictions, Datamonitor cannot foresee any introduction of iTV gambling in the U.S. market in the medium term.

“iTV gambling will be a very profitable market. However, due to nature of this distribution medium and the involvement of governments in this market, entry barriers will be high and only a few companies will be able to benefit from these growing revenues,” according to Hayler.

Judi Poker Online

Youbet.com Wants to Buy High-Volume Shop

Youbet.com, which recently topped the $1-billion mark in handle, announced Feb. 8 it has a letter of intent to acquire International Racing Group, the Curacao-based account wagering company named but not charged in an 88-count federal indictment that alleged illegal gambling.

IRG, known within the pari-mutuel industry as Holiday Beach, caters to high-volume customers. The company, which offers rebates, handled $140 million in 2003 and $210 million in 2004, according to figures provided by Youbet.com.

Youbet.com said the acquisition is subject to due diligence and could be completed by the second quarter of this year. Youbet.com, which plans to operate IRG as a separate entity, has formed an independent committee to review IRG and ensure it employs “best practices,” the company release said.

IRG accepts telephone wagers only. Youbet.com called the company “privately held, licensed, and regulated.”

IRG is one of several companies denied the New York Racing Association signal in the wake of the federal indictment. Churchill Downs Inc. also suspended its agreements with IRG and other services named in the indictment.

NYRA is reviewing those contracts and developing protocol for wagering services that take its signal. Youbet.com officials said IRG customers would benefit from the proposed purchase because Youbet.com carries NYRA racing.

“One of our core growth initiatives has been to expand the scope of our (advance deposit wagering) product line through the acquisition of other pari-mutuel wagering companies that would be accretive to our operations,” Youbet.com chairman Charles Champion said in a release. “The acquisition of IRG, which has built up a strong and loyal customer base under the direction of Lou Tavano, would, if completed, be consistent with this goal.”

In a 2004 interview with The Blood-Horse, Tavano said IRG made an effort to work with the pari-mutuel industry after the Breeders’ Cup Ultra Pick 6 fraud of 2002. He said operations such as Holiday Beach have been mischaracterized because of the negative connotations of “offshore” wagering.

“I believe we are bringing money to the table and paying money to tracks that otherwise wouldn’t flow to the tracks,” Tavano said at the time. “If we went out of business, our players wouldn’t go back to the track and bet through the windows. Actually, we’re taking wagering handle away from places that wouldn’t contribute anything to the tracks.”

Holiday Beach and other high-volume shops are said to pay up to 6.5%–double the industry standard–to obtain signals.

The Youbet.com release included comments from John Roark, president of the National Horsemen’s Benevolent and Protective Association. The National HBPA, during its winter convention in January, released a white paper that showed how horsemen receive much less from account wagering than they get from on-track bets. The National HBPA at the convention didn’t take a formal position on rebates.

“Off-track wagering is a complementary business for the Judi Poker Online segment, and the appreciation of it by industry participants should only increase as the visibility of licensed, public companies continues to grow,” Roark said in the release. “We believe the proposed acquisition of IRG, given Youbet’s leadership in setting compliance and regulatory standards, makes this transaction one that will benefit racetracks, horsemen’s groups, and the industry at large.”

Gregg Schatzman of Schatzman & Associates will assist the Youbet.com committee in the review of IRG. Youbet.com said Schatzman is the former chief of investigations for the Nevada Gaming Control Board.

Domino QQ

The good, the bad and the ugly in Domino QQ

The Good? Well, for those that have been following my mum’s out of hospital early. Doesn’t need surgery and her condition can be treated with drugs. An enormous relief. 🙂

The Bad? My trading on England v Sri Lanka test match. Simply amateurish. How anyone lost on this match is a mystery. Even leaving aside the fact that my connection froze when Hoggard got the penultimate wicket and I could have backed Sri Lankans at 1.2 for a hefty all round green having laid them at 1.04. (By the time I’d rebooted the light had been offered and the price was back in.)

The Ugly? The result of both the Domino QQ match for England and my final position. I lost £154.58. I had some misfortune in the match but I deserved to lose trading the way I did.

Thankfully I pulled back some of the loss on some tennis later in the afternoon. Should have really stuck to it instead of doing a 5 day test but I just had to watch this one.

Why so? It’s the first test match of the English summer! And though I’m greener than a particularly envious green thing because Emma (my fiancee for anyone who hasn’t read the What’s it all about section) has blagged a box at Lords through work at least I got to watch the whole thing on tv.

Pretty lucky really. Emma likes her cricket as much as me and she managed to get some Ashes tickets through work for last summer. We even made it to a Sri Lanka v Bangladesh test in Columbo last year. Anyway, the point is I get to watch and trade on lots of cricket with few complaints!

That all said I just got too eager today. Tried backing Sri Lanka hoping for early wickets to get some early green and they didn’t come. Rudi Koertzen had another of his “special” days behind the stumps and forgot about the lbw law. Still, should be plenty of time to turn my position around.

It’s kind of sacrilege really. Test cricket is great but I actually prefer one dayers because the trading is quicker. Depending on the match situation there can be hours of very little market movement in tests. I knew that by ignoring the tennis today it would be less profitable but I just had to have the test match on in the background this time.

Finally got round to putting in some proper time today and traded a few matches. Would have been better off staying in bed!

Two games of note really. Guess I should cover my first loss to start. Dropped £361.42 on the Roddick / Bagdhatis match. Ouch. 🙁 Of course you can’t win all the time. And the first loss was always round the corner. But I’d kind of hoped it was a bit further into the future and not quite so heavy!

Have looked through my trades. Was all going great with a moderate green on each until the second set. Trouble came when Bagdhatis took a rest in the second, forgot how to serve and started conserving that extra body weight by standing still for a few games. (Ok, the guy has an awesome return of serve but doesn’t he always look just a little bit, well, jowly?!)

Ended up placing 4 trades that went against me from then till the match end. Still, it’s all about discipline. Could easily have maxed out on one with a smallish green on the other and hope for the “right” result. But that’s not what this is about. Especially when working with a fixed bank and a clear goal. So took a deep breath, levelled to more or less equal red and back to the basics of reducing it. A bit of a disaster none the less and my biggest tennis loss for a long time. The annoying thing is I’d upped my stakes to £500 for this one hence the size of the loss compared to previous wins on this blog. Guess many would have taken the risk and stuck it out for a win. I’m glad I didn’t as my green was on Bagdhatis and he lost. So, something to smile about anyway!!

The other match I’ll mention involved the newly crowned British no. 1. Our Greg. Sky did their usual and screened on the non-interactive channel so I traded it. Should have stuck with my head and gone with the Nalbandian match. There was much better liquidity.

But that’s the issue here. Always torn between trading the higher liquidity games or the lower ones. My thinking is this. On the Rusedski game today there were a few bigger players in the market. But there was a lot of dead money too. It was easy to pick off bad prices and get some true value trades in. All was going great. The flip side is if you get on the wrong side of a trade you can’t always get out. And that’s what happened. I was offering what I considered screaming value to try and ditch a back but it didn’t get taken before the next point. Tried again on the next with the same outcome. The break happens, prices move and a 3 figure green all round drops to miserable 2 figure green. Ironically liquidity did pick up later in the game but too late for me.

Absolutely convinced in a more liquid market I’d have closed the initial trade at a small loss. Though that said I wouldn’t have built the green so quickly either.

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Guti targeted by a hard-fisted Dominoqq Online stalker

Real Madrid’s José María Gutiérrez, better known as Guti, must have been shocked when a former boxer came at him before his team was getting ready to head for a league game in Santander.

Guti had been stalked for some time by the individual, whose name has not been revealed by the Spanish police, but no close confrontation Dominoqq Online occurred before last Saturday.

The stalker noticed Guti as he arrived at the parking lot in Ciudad Deportiva, Real’s training camp, and headed toward him in his vehicle.

In the process, the man broke the security ramp and damaged a couple of parked cars before stopping. The guards called the police and tried to intervene themselves, but the boxer punched one of them in the face with his fist.

However, other guards managed to control the individual and kept him at bay before the police arrived.

Guti filed charges against the stalker for stalking and harrasment, while the guards also presented their own charges for assault and trespassing. The investigation is likely to reveal the motive the man could have for shadowing the Madrid midfielder.

Palermo’s boss denies ties to the mafia

Italian soccer club Palermo has no links to the mafia, said their chairman Maurizio Zamparini, denying any contact with the criminal organization, hinted at by some Italian media.

It has been claimed that the mobsters have some influence in the construction of Palermo’s new ground and the shopping mall which is planned to be opened within the stadium.

“Mafia has no ties to the club,” said Zamparini. “I hope everybody sees that my associates and me are doing our jobs professionally. Although the mafia was created in this city, it does not mean they rule everything that exists here, or that they are related to me in any way.”

Two years ago, the former Palermo sporting director received a goat’s head in the mail, which is the mafia’s way of warning of an upcoming execution.

“If anything similar had happened to me, I would have left. I am clean, and so is this club,” concluded Zamparini.

Roman still speechless in London

Russian and other Slavic languages are notoriously tough for English speakers. However, the Slavs usually find it easy to learn a syntactically simpler language like English.

Tottenham’s new signing Roman Pavlyuchenko may be an exception to the rule, as he has not yet managed to master English well enough to maintain meaningful conversations with his teammates at White Hart Lane.

According to the Russian newspaper Tvoy Dan (Your Day), the Spurs were wise to include a clause in their contract with Pavlyuchenko, stipulating a fine unless he learned English well enough within his first weeks at the club.

The period has passed and the former Spartak striker still has to use an interpreter to understand Juande Ramos’ instructions. Since the Spaniard himself is hardly a great connoisseur of English, the communcation of the two must look hilarious.

Still, the Spurs’ bosses are certainly not amused, as the team sits at the bottom of the Premiership table after five matches.

Did Haim Revivo escape to the US because of a mob threat?

Haim Revivo, the former Israeli international, has emigrated to the United States after receiving mafia threats, according to the Israeli media.

The one-time forward for Celta Vigo, Fenerbahce and Galatasaray said he and his family moved because his rabbi had advised him to do so.

It may be true, but for all we know, the advice may have been, “save your skin.”

The Yedioth Ahronoth daily published a different story, claiming that Revivo had to leave because the local mafia had threatened to kill him because he had an affair with a mob kingpin’s wife.

According to Yedioth, the mafia imposed on Revivo a two-year exile as a way of redeeming himself.

One of the leading players in Israel’s history, Revivo played 67 games and scored 15 goals for the national team, including the winner in his country’s only win over Argentina in 1998.

Welcome to the Boca Juniors Hotel

The Argentinian club Boca Juniors are very special in many respects. Until recently, they were the only soccer club to have a graveyard exclusively for their fans (in the meantime Germany’s Hamburger SV have joined the select group of cemetery-owning soccer clubs).

Within two years, they should also have a hotel carrying their name. The construction works is due to start next month, and should be finished in mid-2010.

The luxury hotel will have 17 floors with 89 rooms, some of which will bear names of Boca’s celebrities like Diego Maradona, Alfredo Rojas or Ubaldo Rattin. The building, designed by the Uruguayan architect Carlos Ott, will also boast swimming pools, restaurants and other commercial and entertainment facilities.

The hotel and the graveyard are not the the only two distinctions that set Boca apart; the blue and yellows have also started their own taxi service in Buenos Aires. We bet there are not many River Plate fans among their customers.

In their 103 years of existence, Boca have won a record 18 international trophies, tying AC Milan, and 22 Argentinian titles.


Ich bin ein Bandarqq Deutschlander

The English grow up in an atmosphere of mild and generally accepted racism towards the Germans (and French, Italians, Argentinians etc.). We all know – whether we have actually met a German or not – that the Germans are ruthlessly efficient, arrogant and desperately lacking in humour. It’s common knowledge that when we go on holiday we can’t get a lounger by the pool because the Germans will have got up early to hog the best spots. Everyone in Germany owns at least 10 David Hasselhoff CD’s and keeps a little shrine of him at home.

At best these are the sort of pointless stereotypes every country engages with one of their neighbours/rivals. Americans make fun of Canadians, Aussies laugh at New Zealanders and so on. At worst the result is hatred and violence or more commonly just plain stupidity as witnessed in the numerous English ‘fans’ in Germany who delighted in singing 10 German Bombers or Two World Wars and One World Cup. Fortunately the German police displayed considerably more humour than their stereotype suggests in dealing with these idiots.

Personally I don’t subscribed to any of these theories but life and football are different and I’ve never had much time for the German football team, who are pompous, boring and, worst of all, the kind of ruthlessly efficient winners we always hope the England team will be.

I’m too young to have seen the 1966 final but I know the Bandarqq ball went over the line because it has been repeated hundreds of thousands of times on English television. Great though it was that final has haunted English football ever since not least by giving us the delirious idea that we are better than the Germans at football. History strongly suggests otherwise.

Since the ’66 final Germany have won the World Cup twice and been to the final on four other occasions. On the way they have tortured England more than any other nation. Knocking them out of Mexico ’70, Italy ’90 on penalties and Euro 96 again on penalties – they do earn that ruthless stereotype – and winning the last game at Wembely. When England beat them at Euro 2000 or a 5-1 thrashing in 2002 qualifying it didn’t seem to matter. Both teams went out at the group stage at Euro 2000 and both qualified for 2002 with Germany, of course reaching the final while England were again bundled out in the quarters. the Germans don’t even consider us their rivals saving that spot for the Dutch.

So, when it comes to football we’ve got a reasonable of a grudge to bear against the Germans. And in this respect surely it’s not just us. Great footballers though they were it was hard to like sneering Mattaus, or the diving Klinsman – at least before his rebirth as a comedian when he moved to England. Even the Germans couldn’t tolerate the arrogance of Steffen Effenberg who they sent home from USA ’94 for swearing at his own fans. When Frank Rijkaard spat in Rudi Voller’s bubble perm it felt like he was getting one back for all of us.

Most of all English don’t like the German football team because they play with the virtues we want our own team to play with. They are strong and courageous, working with a collective purpose and controlled energy that England aspire to but can never achieve. They don’t play the champagne football of Brazil but they defend with lion hearts and move the ball effectively from defence to attack striking with precision at clinical moments. They win on penalties. They win the World Cup. The truth is English don’t hate the Germans, we’re jealous of them.

This year though something has changed. Germany went into this World Cup facing the fear of humiliation. The team looked average thrashed by Italy and scraping a draw with Japan in the build up. The nation was divided in by the Kahn-Lehman debate (Sven Goran-Erikkson would probably have picked them both), Klinsman lived in California and was babbling all sorts of new age nonsense about positive energy. Germany faced the real prospect of disaster.

Then the team started to play. The arrogance was gone but the confidence was still there. They looked a bit vulnerable at the back but they attacked with venom and energy. Where other teams haven’t wanted to lose Germany have wanted to win. A weak group was brushed aside and the Swedes were blown away with some fearsome attacking. Then, the Argentians, lacking the courage of their convictions, succumbed on penalties, and somehow I found myself roaring with delight as every one went in. Klinsi smiled and the nation rejoiced. Thoughts of humiliation replaced with thoughts of Glory.

The players are young and engaging, strong but vulnerable. Even Kahn seems to have mellowed out. Their most symbolic player is not the teutonic Ballack but the left-back Philip Lahm. He bombs up and down the wing like a dashund and defends like a German Sheperd. All the while he innocently holds on to the edges of his long-sleeves looking for all the world like a little boy.

I’ll might as well just say it – I LOVE THE GERMANS and I hope they thrash the negative Italians and go on to take the cup. I have only one fear – What if I support the Germans and they lose?

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New Judi Slot Casino Portal Will Offer Exclusive Bonuses to Players on January 19th.

For Immediate Release – January 19th  marks the official launch of budding online casino portal, Gambling Inc. The portal, which positions itself as an informative source for jackpot hungry gamers, will provide visitors with the latest news, bonuses, reviews and game rules in addition to forums and tips on where to play.

Though the site has been live since November, the official launch was delayed in order to allow time to fix glitches and to build momentum. In a short amount of time, Gambling Inc. has already earned a Google ranking of 5/10 and has caught the attention of several leading casino operators who are advertising on the site.

To celebrate the launch on the 19th, judi slot Gambling Inc. will unveil special promo codes on its site that will entitle visitors to exclusive bonuses at sponsoring casinos.

All Heart at Trident

Family abuse body wins charity donation

January 6, 2004 — Kahnawake, Canada – Trident Group collaborated with its players last month to spread a little Christmas cheer in the shape of a $1,000 donation to charity.

Players at the King Neptune’s (www.kingneptunescasino.com) , Trident Lounge (www.tridentloungecasino.com) and VegasUSA (www.vegasusacasino.com) online casinos in the group were invited to nominate a charity of their choice for inclusion in a draw for the $1 000.

Following a good response, the draw was held on December 28, with the star at the top of the Christmas tree emerging as The National Council on Child Abuse and Family Violence and winning the donation.

This Togel Online organisation is dedicated to the prevention of abuse of partners, children or the aged and has served all fifty US States, Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Isles for the past two decades, providing public awareness and education materials, program and resource development consulting and training to a growing network in this critical social area.

Many celebrities, headed by television personality Oprah Winfrey have helped the NCCAFV to awaken public interest and support through campaigns in print media, television, radio and posters such as “Children Should Be Seen And Not Hurt”. The body has also become an international leader in its field with the formation of the Geneva-based International Forum for Child Welfare.

Trident spokesperson Scott Gaines said, “We could not have picked a better charity than this one, focused as it is on preventing the physical and mental abuse of those with only a limited capability to defend themselves. The NCCAFV gives practical advice as well as campaigning publicly against this evil and has our full support.”

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Many of the slot machine games at Titan Casino online are based on superheroes. For example. the lead characters in Marvel superhero slots machines are men and women who stumble into superhero powers and take the world by storm. Only here’s the twist – some aren’t based on people at all, but instead on apes.

That’s the case with the King Kong slots, which are based on an unforgettable fantasy film from the 1930s. The story of the rise and fall of a fearsome monster primate is one of Hollywood’s all-time classics, and there’s no reason it can’t translate to a fantastic casino gaming experience as well.

Let’s explore the history of the movie series and then take a quick peek at Titan Casino’s Kong: The Eighth Wonder of the World slots game.

The Original Film Classic

The original King Kong premiered in 1933, the product of writers James Ashmore Creelman and Ruth Rose and director Merian Cooper. The film tells the story of Carl Denham, a filmmaker who enjoys filming animals in exotic locales. One day, he stumbles into the subject of a lifetime – a massive ape, identified as “Kong,” who’s invading New York Harbor.

Denham (Robert Armstrong) begins filming a movie about the ape, starring young actress Ann Darrow (Fay Wray). But things go wrong when Kong emerges from the jungle and kidnaps Ann, carrying her away into the forest. The film crew soon discovers that plenty more giant creatures are lying in wait, deep in the jungle, and the suspense mounts.

The ’30s film classic was revered by millions, and it spun off into a major remake in 1976. Then, in 2005, King Kong hit the big screen again in a modern blockbuster film.

The 2000s Remake

King Kong returned to Hollywood prominence last decade with major financial backing from Universal Pictures and some big names attached to the project. Peter Jackson, fresh off of a handful of Oscar wins with his Lord of the Rings series, signed on to co-write, produce, and direct the new King Kong, with Jack Black playing Denham and Naomi Watts as Ann. Adrien Brody played Jack Driscoll, the screenwriter working with Denham on the King Kong movie project.

The 2005 film was set back in 1933, giving modern Americans a chance to revisit the Great Depression-era setting. Denham is a troubled, almost haunted character, and Ann is unemployed and desperate for acting work. The film certainly captures the economic reality of the times.

It’s also jam-packed with special effects and action. Initially, it was budgeted at $150 million, but that figure ballooned to a whopping $207 million. It eventually made that money back and then some though, generating $550 million worldwide, plus it earned three Academy Awards for its technical genius: Best Sound Editing, Best Sound Mixing, and Best Visual Effects.

Kong: The Eighth Wonder of the World Casino Slots Game

With the King Kong slot machines at Singapore casino game, you get to relive the movie experience while also getting a chance to win big money. Thanks to the game’s high-quality graphics, you get to enjoy the same look and feel as the classic movie. There are both Skull Island and City Tower backdrops, displaying two of the film’s classic settings, and plenty of bonus features that might lead to some serious winnings.

In this five-reel, 20-slot game, there are bonus games and re-spin features that help you maximize your payouts. To explore all the possibilities, be sure to get in the game today.

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