Online lottery betting operators have punched holes in arguments they adversely impact good causes initiated by Ireland’s National Lottery.
A new report titled An Assessment of the Online Gambling Market in Ireland compiled by aa economist at the University College Dublin, Jim Power, said that that lottery betting operators being responsible for the decline in funding provided by Ireland’s National Lottery is “factually incorrect”.
Premier Lotteries Ireland however, disagree with the findings and believe, like many other countries have concluded, that lotto betting companies are eating into the government’s tax kick from national lotteries.
The report commissioned by the European Lotto Betting Association (ELBA) confirmed the drop in funding for good causes by the National Lottery from €268m in 2008 to €225m in 2017, a decline of €43m, representing 16% drop.
According to the report, the three Irish-licenced members of ELBA, including myLotto24 and Lottoland, made Irish sales of €1.4m in 2017, representing about 0.25% of the draw-based turnover earned by National Lottery operator PLI that same year.
Relying on the figures from his report, Jim Power, said that there is no strong evidence supporting the notion that lottery-betting operators pose “any meaningful threat” to good causes funding.
He said the National Lottery generated only 6.5% of its sales from digital channels in 2017, woefully below the 19.5% in digital sales reported by the UK National Lottery the same year.
He added PLI’s seeming apathy toward digital channels was “massively at odds” with consumer trends.
He, therefore, suggested that the presence of lottery betting operators was driving PLI to up its game, adding that, “increased competition in the digital channel is an essential aspect in achieving long-term sustainability for good-causes funding.”
Response by Premier Lotteries Ireland
The CEO of PLI this summer used strong words on lottery betting sites calling them “rogues” for “syphoning off” National Lottery revenue resulting in the drop of funding for good causes. He also blamed the websites for the lottery’s decision to increase ticket prices.
The PLI, therefore, issued a statement last Sunday rejecting the findings in the report by reaffirming its stance that lottery betting operators are “clearly cannibalising our games and denying good causes from additional funding.”
They indicated that in 2008, funding for good causes for the National Lottery increased due to a peak in its sales that year. PLI also revealed that from 2015 to 2017 they recorded growth in good causes funding from €188m in 2015 to €226.3m.
PLI also noted digital growth was “an important part of our strategy,” indicating its regular active online players rose from 81k in 2016 to “almost 97k” by the end of 2017.
The 36th Annual Vans Triple Crown of Surfing fired into action on opening day of the holding window, as Round 1 of the Hawaiian Pro saw North Shore standouts like Kiron Jabour (HAW), Finn McGill (HAW) and Mason Ho (HAW) claim their stake in Round 2 alongside international Qualifying Series (QS) hopefuls Victor Bernardo (BRA), Noe Mar McGonagle (CRI) and Adin Masencamp (ZAF).
The Hawaiian Pro is a World Surf League (WSL) Men’s QS 10,000 event and will count toward 2019 Championship Tour (CT) qualification, plus give an early lead on the Vans Triple Crown of Surfing (VTCS) Champion title.
Jabour is riding high with confidence after his recent win at the HIC Pro Men’s QS 3,000, which took place at Sunset Beach as the local qualifying event for the VTCS, and easily surfed his way into first advancing position with a combined heat total of 11.00 (out of a possible 20). He applied keen wave selection while tallying four waves and earned the highest score of the heat, a 6.50, utilising stylish and committed surfing.
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Jabour’s win on home turf instilled a renewed confidence in the surfer after a year of competing on the QS with mediocre results. Ahead of the Hawaii season, he spent time in Portugal and enjoyed preparing for an above-average winter of waves, which is expected thanks to a trending El Niño weather pattern.
“(Portugal) is great practice for over here with all the reef breaks, I got to paddle Nazaré before I came here and I got to even feel a big board, big energy,” Jabour said.
“It’s perfect pre-season for the winter over here. I love it.” He and Big Island athlete Torrey Meister (HAW) will surf in Round 2 once competition resumes.
Brazil’s Victor Bernardo posted the day’s highest single wave score, an 8.33 for excellent power surfing in Round One Heat 9. Bernardo attacked his final wave of the heat with a solid snap off the top and then flowed into a big, wrapping turn and completed the ride with a committed closing maneuver. He and fellow advancing competitor David Van Zyl (ZAF) eliminated two local athletes – Noah Hill (HAW) and Sheldon Paishon (HAW) – on their hunt for points and prestige.
Bernardo arrived early to Hawaii for a competitive warm up at the HIC Pro; 2018 marks his third consecutive showing in the VTCS. Currently ranked No. 67 on the QS, he will improve his standings if he can maintain rhythm and forge a strong finish at the Hawaiian Pro.
“I just try to come here and stay as long as I can and surf here, get used to the waves,” Bernardo said. “It’s way more powerful and it gets bigger, I’m not used to that in Brazil so I always take advantage of the opportunity to come here.”
Freshly crowned 2018 WSL Hawaii/Tahiti Nui Regional QS Winner, O’Neill Massin (PYF), moved onto the next round after advancing behind Jack Robinson (AUS) in an internationally mixed, competitive heat. Robinson was able to secure two mid-range scores – a 5.17 and 6.33 – while Massin earned second after scoring a 6.07 on his final ride. Massin won the regional QS circuit at the HIC Pro after a runner-up finish to Jabour, which was his goal for 2018, and now looks forward to enjoying his time competing in the VTCS.
“I feel confident, just have fun, no pressure,” Massin said.
“I did my job, I said my goal was the regional, so I’m stoked to be here in Haleiwa and in the Triple Crown… I think for next year my goal will be to win the Triple Crown and qualify for the CT.”
Robinson displayed a well-rounded repertoire today and switched up his usual big wave game with the smaller surf on offer at Haleiwa. With good wave selection and consistency, Robinson moved one step closer to his ultimate goal.
“That’s the whole goal is to get to the tour,” Robinson said.
“When I come here and see these two events, get to the end of the year, I can’t do anything else other than just go out and surf, and that’s when I do my best. Just go out and try to find the best waves and let it all go from there. Whoever gets the best waves gets to show what they’ve got and that’s who you’re sparring against. Can’t do much else other than just surf, that’s what it’s all about in these events for me.”
Many athletes took to the air in the ramp-like waves today, but the flying standout was Tahiti’s Mihimana Braye (PYF) who earned a 7.00 on a tail-high air reverse – his highest and cleanest aerial manoeuvre of Heat 4.
“I’ve been training at my home break of Papara and the left is kind of similar to this,” Braye said.
“I’m feeling confident, I have some good boards, my DHD works good. I’m feeling good and can’t wait for the next one.” Braye went against a stacked heat that included Hawaiian phenom Mason Ho (HAW), Maui’s upstart Cody Young (HAW) and Gatien Delahaye (FRA).
“It was a hard one actually, first heat is always the hardest one,” Braye continued.
“You want to get your rhythm going so I’m pretty stoked to make this heat. I felt a little bit stressed at the beginning catching some waves, but after I was like, ‘okay I need to go for it. I need to boost if I want to get some scores.’ It’s a 10,000 so you have to step up your game and show your real level.”
Hawaiian Pro Results
Athletes listed in 1st through 4th
Round 1 (1st and 2nd advance, 3rd = 97th place, 4th = 113th place)
H1: Jeronimo Vargas (BRA), Mateus Herdy (BRA), Lahiki Minamishin (HAW), Leandro Usuna (ARG)
H2: Liam O’Brien (AUS), Ramzi Boukhiam (MAR), Luel Felipe (BRA), Eala Stewart (HAW)
H3: Finn McGill (HAW), Lucas Silveira (BRA), Flavio Nakagima (BRA), Ocean Macedo (HAW)
H4: Mihimana Braye (PYF), Mason Ho (HAW), Cody Young (HAW), Gatien Delahaye (FRA)
H5: Elijah Gates (HAW), Kei Kobayashi (USA), Imaikalani deVault (HAW), Koa Smith (HAW)
H6: Jacob Willcox (AUS), Benji Brand (HAW), Joh Azuchi (JPN), Kainehe Hunt (HAW)
H7: Santiago Muniz (ARG), Noe Mar McGonagle (CRI), Kekoa Cazimero (HAW), Ragael Teixeira (BRA)
H8: Adin Masencamp (ZAF), Aritz Aranburu (ESP), Ulualoha Napeahi (HAW), Ian Gentil (HAW)
H9: Victor Bernardo (BRA), David Van Zyl (ZAF), Noah Hill (HAW), Sheldon Paishon (HAW)
H10: Joshua Burke (BRB), Oney Anwar (IDN), Beyrick De Vries (ZAF), Vehiatua Prunier (PYF)
H11: Kiron Jabour (HAW), Torrey Meister (HAW), Logan Bediamol (HAW), Tomas Tudela (PER)
H12: Skip McCullough (USA), Jackson Baker (AUS), Cole Alves (HAW), Jamie O’Brien (HAW)
H13: Jack Robinson (AUS), O’Neill Massin (PYF), Marco Fernandez (BRA), Michael O’Shaughnessy (HAW)
H14: Makai McNamara (HAW), Shayden Pacarro (HAW), Wiggolly Dantas (BRA), Reo Inaba (JPN)
H15: Cooper Chapman (AUS), Tereva David (PYF), Kalani Ball (AUS), Dylan Lightfoot (HAW)
H16: Ian Crane (USA), Noa Mizuno (HAW), Evan Valiere (HAW), Davey Cathels (AUS)