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– Written by Mark van Deventer

Dapper and erudite broadcaster, Rishi Persad, is excited about his first trip to Africa as he makes his way to the edge of the continent to present Saturday’s World Sports Betting Cape Town MET card.

Persad’s family raced horses when he was growing up in the West Indies, and after getting a law degree in London, he moved into broadcasting with At The Races back in 2002. He has since become a familiar face at the races, covering big meetings around the world such as the Breeders Cup, Dubai World Cup, L’Arc de Triomphe, Grand National, Cheltenham, Royal Ascot and Glorious Goodwood.

Though horse racing is closest to his heart, Persad is a versatile sports journalist with a wide resume. He has worked at Olympic Games in Athens, Beijing and London, reported from the Commonwealth Games in Delhi, gone back to his Caribbean roots for the Cricket World Cup, regularly been part of Wimbledon broadcasting teams, and has presented at iconic golf events such as the Ryder Cup, US Masters and The Open.

The 49-year-old will be a key member of Cape Racing’s team of presenters and pundits as they cover a stakes laden card at Hollywoodbets Kenilworth. The City of Cape Town Majorca Stakes, World Pool Cape Flying Champs and World Sports Betting Cape Town MET over 2000m are all prestigious Grade 1 Weight-for-Age contests attracting many of South Africa’s best thoroughbreds.

“From a personal point of view, it has always been a burning ambition to visit South Africa,” says Persad of his upcoming travels. “To have the opportunity to do that, attend the country’s most famous race day, and broadcast alongside a talented team – including one or two old friends – is just about the perfect set up. I cannot wait to experience the big day.”

Persad’s genial manner, racing savvy and TV expertise will buttress World Sports Betting Cape Town MET coverage, which will be beamed to racing jurisdictions across the globe. The World Pool collaboration with the Hong Kong Jockey Club will also provide a massive boon to betting turnovers across the 11-race programme, and provide record exposure for an historic South African horse race, which dates to 1883 when first run as the MET Mile.