Virtual World Cup

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The 2010 FIFA World Cup marked the 19th world championship for men’s national association football teams championship organised by the Fédération Internationale de Football Association. Hosted by South Africa, it featured 32 teams playing in 64 league and knockout matches, including the final, where Spain, the European champions, defeated third-time finalists the Netherlands 1–0 after extra time, becoming the first European nation to win the tournament outside its home continent.

To commemorate the competition and give fans an opportunity to experience the excitement of wagering on matches round by round, “Virtual World Cup” provides a highly realistic simulation of the real 2010 FIFA tournament. Teams are initially divided into eight Groups, A~H, consisting of four teams each. The full tournament covers 64 fixtures played at a pace of one round every 120 seconds, which includes 75 seconds to place a bet and 45 seconds for the matches. The time remaining until the current round’s matches start is shown by means of a countdown symbol in the centre of the games screen.

The Virtual World Cup display looks just like the betting page of an online bookmaker. Bets can be made on the Outright Winner as well as the eight Group winners at fixed odds. There is match betting on each and every pairing, not only on home and away winners and draws but also on Asian Handicaps, +/- 2.5 Goals, Correct Score and First Goal Scorer. The latter two options can be accessed via the “+51” button in the “1x2” bet field, where it is possible to choose from 51 additional betting options

Wagers are placed by clicking directly on the blue Odds button appearing next to the team or selection desired. The wager must then be confirmed by selecting the amount of the stake from 10p to £100 at the lower left section of the screen. Singles, doubles, trebles and other accumulators or multiple bets are available, too, and bets are accepted up to 5 seconds before each game is played. All wagers and results appear in the “Bet Details” section at the top right corner of the display.

Each new tournament begins with the Group phase, with teams playing against each other. Points are awarded using a typical league formula: 3 points for each win, 1 point for a draw and zero points for a loss. The top two teams from each Group survive to the Phase 2 knockout round of 16. The number of teams is halved in each round thereafter until the last two teams meet in the World Cup final. All league qualifying and knockout matches are one off matches.

In each round, Virtual World Cup one match selected at random to be the “Featured Match.” A screen showing a stadium with players on the pitch and a huge scoreboard brings the action to life—the names of goal scorers and the times of their scores flash on the board as the match is in progress, and then the results of all that round’s matches are displayed on a single screen.

After the very last round of a tournament, the World Cup Champions are declared and 195 seconds are provided before the next tournament begins. This is sufficient time for reviewing the recent results and studying the Groups allotted for the next competition. It is also possible to skip the final animation any time by clicking on Next Tournament. This action provides some additional time for placing bets before the next tournament begins. A complete tournament takes 24 minutes, with a total of 60 tournaments played every day.

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