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I-play Serves Up Maria Sharapova Tennis During US Open

Mobile games publisher launches Maria Sharapova Tennis in time for US Open

San Mateo, CA - 29th August 2005: I-play, the mobile games company, today announced the availability of 'Maria Sharapova Tennis', the mobile game starring the tennis champion, for this year's US Open. Created and developed by India's leading mobile games company, Dhruva Interactive, 'Maria Sharapova Tennis' is now available on major carriers and online portals across North America.

"As part of our drive to create mobile games for everyone, we are very pleased to bring an athlete of huge, global appeal like Maria Sharapova to mobile gaming. The game will be simple to play but difficult to master, just like tennis itself," said Paul Maglione, Senior Vice President of Publishing and Marketing of I-play.

Currently ranked number one in the world and seeded first at the U.S. Open, Sharapova, took the tennis world by storm last year when she won the 2004 All-England Championships tennis' most prestigious tournament. Just 18 and only a professional player for three years, she also captured the WTA tournaments in Seoul and Tokyo before beating Serena Williams in the 2004 final of the WTA Championships in Los Angeles. In 2005, she won titles in Tokyo and Doha, Qatar, and reached the semi-finals of the Australian Open in January. Recently, Sharapova was named one of People Magazine's 2005 "50 Most Beautiful People."

Rajesh Rao, CEO of Dhruva Interactive commented: "Our effort has been to make a compelling mobile tennis game that can be played by the mass market, not just high end phones. Dhruva has built its reputation on building high quality games. The mobile gaming market is at a critical development phase and we intend Maria Sharapova Tennis to be a genre defining game."

Players can fight it out as Maria in Maria Sharapova Tennis and compete across four Grand Slam tournaments with a range of shots and court surfaces. Career earnings are used to unlock pictures of Maria to store on player's phones.

Sharapova, who has taken considerable interest in the game, commented: "By using my name in a mobile gaming context, I hope that tennis fans will be able to share my passion, whatever the weather or conditions of play."

IMG, the world's premier sports and lifestyle management firm, manages the tennis star's relationship with I-play. Gregg Oldfield, Vice President Brand Marketing & Interactive Media, IMG said: "The increasing popularity of mobile games enables sports personalities to capitalize on new media opportunities. I-Play and Dhruva have developed a compelling Maria Sharapova mobile game that provides a high quality interactive experience for tennis fans worldwide."

I-play - did you know?

Research conducted by I-play and independent research agency SKOPOS, based on interviews with over 2,500 respondents aged between 12- 44 year olds across the US, the UK, Italy, Spain and Germany, found that an overwhelming 47% of females have played a mobile game. It also revealed that females get stuck into a mobile game more than their male counterparts:- this was most significant in the USA - where 42% of females played a single game for over 20 minutes compared to 27% of men and in the UK where 22% of females played for compared to 15% of men.

About I-play

I-play, the mobile games company, brings the best in mobile entertainment to a mobile gaming audience of over 600 million people via mobile operators, retail stores and online portals, including I-play has been creating mobile games since 1998 and continues to spearhead the creation of games for the next generation. As one of the world's longest established and respected creators of mobile games, the I-play brand stands for quality and the best in mobile game development. Working with the best media and entertainment brands, I-play is 100% focused on mobile games, and dedicated to fulfilling the promise of the mobile phone as the first truly mass-market electronic games platform.

I-play's investors are Apax Partners and Argo Global Capital. I-play is headquartered in London, with European Regional HQ in Dunfermline, Scotland and North American Regional HQ in San Mateo, California as well as sales offices in Paris, Munich, Madrid, Rome, New York, Fairfax, Sao Paulo and Singapore.

For more information, please call +44 (0) 20 7901 1760 or visit us at

I-play is a trademark and trading name of Digital Bridges Limited.

About Dhruva Interactive

Dhruva Interactive is India's oldest and most respected games company, developing and publishing games for consoles, PC and mobile wireless devices. Founded in 1997, the company has pioneered gaming in India and publishes high quality mass market oriented PC and mobile games in India. Dhruva's mobile division is a leading developer of mobile games in the world; branded games include Charlie Chaplin, Phil 'The Power' Taylor Darts, Pat Cash Pro Tennis and Slyder."

Dhruva's PC & Console division is a leading provider of production services for the global videogames industry, having worked on 10 AAA videogame titles in the last 4 years, most recent being Microsoft's cutting edge racing title Forza Motorsport. Dhruva's first original PC product is a feature-rich 3D multiplayer pool game called Pool on the Net, releasing in 2005. For more, please visit

About IMG

IMG is the world's premier sports and lifestyle management and marketing firm, with an international staff of more than 2,200 people in 70 offices in 30 countries. TWI, IMG's television division, is the largest independent distributor and producer of televised sports, managing a library of more than 150,000 hours. TWI annually produces and distributes 6,500 hours of original programming to more than 200 countries covering 200+ sports, as well as being a global leader in digital sports and entertainment. IMG is also commercially involved in an average of 11 major sports and cultural events around the world every day; IMG Consulting works with many of the world's largest corporations on marketing and sponsorship programs; IMG's stadium and arena group works with leagues and franchises worldwide; IMG is the world's largest non-character licensing firm, and is a leading literary agency and book packager. In addition, IMG Models is the world's number one international model management firm, IMG owns and operates top sports and fitness academies, and IMG Artists is the top global performing arts management firm.

IMG's clients include Charles Barkley, James Brown, Jennifer Capriati, Vince Carter, Bob Costas, Ernie Els, Chris Evert, Sergei Fedorov, Renée Fleming, Sergio Garcia, Gisele, Reteif Goosen, Jeff Gordon, the GRAMMYS®, Denny Green, Scott Hamilton, Elizabeth Hurley, Jaromir Jagr, Derek Jeter, Nancy Lopez, John Madden, Major League Baseball, Eli Manning, Peyton Manning, Steve Mariucci, John McEnroe, Joe Montana, Kate Moss, Jim Nantz, Jack Nicklaus, The Nobel Foundation, Olympus Fashion Week, Arnold Palmer, Itzhak Perlman, the Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St. Andrews, Pete Sampras, Marty Schottenheimer, Maria Sharapova, Michael Schumacher, Vijay Singh, Annika Sorenstam, Picabo Street, Liv Tyler, USGA, the U.S. Olympic Committee, Dick Vitale, Bill Walton, Wembley National Stadium, Venus Williams, Wimbledon and Tiger Woods.

Contact for I-play:

+44 (0) 20 7901 1760

Contact for IMG:

Carla Schalman/Linda Dozoretz

Linda Dozoretz Communications

+ 1 (323) 656-4499

Contact for Dhruva Interactive:

+ 91 80 2535 6644

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