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The Bulgarian authorities have ordered an investigation after the same six numbers were drawn in two consecutive rounds of the national lottery.The numbers - 4, 15, 23, 24, 35 and 42 - were chosen by a machine live on television on 6 and 10 September.An official of the Bulgarian lottery said manipulation was impossible.A mathematician said the chance of the same six numbers coming up twice in a row was one in four million.
The 1 in 14 million number is for 1 - 49. For 1 - 50 the odds are slightly worse; 1 in 15,890,700.
Professional gamblers are rushing to buy £1,000 devices that they believe will enable them to win millions of pounds in casinos when the gambling industry is deregulated next year.Hundreds of the roulette-cheating machines - which consist of a small digital time recorder, a concealed computer and a hidden earpiece - were tested at a government laboratory in 2004 after a gang suspected of using them won £1.3m at the Ritz casino in London.After the research, which was never made public but has been seen by the Guardian, the government's gambling watchdog admitted to industry insiders that the technology can offer punters an edge when playing roulette in a casino, and the advantage can be "considerable".The government's national weights and measures laboratory investigated the technique. It is thought the cheats first identify a "biased" wheel, where the ball appears to commonly drop in roughly the same zone. They also look for signs on the wheel of a "manageable scatter", which means that when the ball strikes a certain number, it will usually fall into a neighbouring pocket. The unpublished report concluded: "On a wheel with a definite bias and a manageable scatter, a prediction device of this nature, when operated by a 'skilled' roulette player, could obtain an advantage when used in a casino."Mark Howe, who sells the devices for £1,000 from a workshop in Sheffield, claims his software will also work on level wheels. Surrounded by the soldering irons and laser sensors he uses to make his devices, he gave the Guardian an apparently successful demonstration of the software he said earned him a substantial sum before he was banned from British casinos in the 1990s.