Archive for November, 2016
The World Series of Poker has announced the addition of seven stops to the WSOP International Circuit schedule, bringing the total number of stops on the non-U.S. portion of the Circuit to 14. The first six additions, announced a couple weeks ago, are:
Sydney, Australia – November 22 through December 12, 2016 – The Star, Sydney
Marrakech, Morocco – January 14 through January 22, 2017 – Casino de Marrakech
Campione, Italy – March 6 through March 20, 2017 – Casino Campione D’Italia
Cannes, France – April 17 through April 24, 2017 – Casino Barriere Cannes le Croisette
Estoril, Portugal – May 1 through May 7, 2017 – Casino Estoril
Brussels, Belgium – May 19 through May 28, 2017 – Grand Casino Brussels VIAGE
Additionally, the U.S. Circuit event that was scheduled for Bally’s Las Vegas from February 23rd through March 6th has been moved to the Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas. It will now be February 16th through February 27th, 2017.
At the time the above six Circuit stops were announced, a seventh was foreshadowed. Another World Series of Poker International Circuit stop HAS been revealed this week, but it is not the seventh to go with the above six on the 2016-2017 schedule. The WSOP announced that a new WSOP International Circuit stop will for the 2017-2018 season will be in the Netherlands at the Holland Casino Rotterdam. No date specifics have been revealed, as the schedule for that season has not been set yet.
“We are proud of the collaboration between Holland Casino and the largest poker brand in the world. The WSOP is a wonderful addition to our already broad range of poker, and it has national and international allure,” said Holland Casino CEO Erwin van Lambaart in a press release.
“As a European, I know Holland Casino to be a party that is capable of organising large and prestigious poker events, such as the historic Master Classics of Poker,” added WSOP Director of Events Gregory Chochon. “We are very proud that the WSOP can work together with such an iconic casino chain and we are looking forward to seeing more Dutch players take part in the WSOP in Vegas.”
As is the case with the WSOP Circuit stops in the United States, two players will qualify at each international stop for the WSOP Global Casino Championship. The Main Event winner will earn an automatic seat in the season-ending Championship, as will the “casino winner.” Each official ring event at a Circuit stop awards players points based on how they finish. The player that earns the most points in total at a particular stop is dubbed the casino winner.
The international portion of the WSOP Circuit has been quite successful lately. According to a press release, the recent stop in Brazil saw 2,981 entries for the opening event, a WSOP record for an event outside of the United States. The tournament was a R$ 580 (USD $ 170) re-buy event, so it wasn’t, 2981 actual players, but rather a combined number of initial entries and re-buys.
With Unibet set to go live with its long-awaited new poker client on Thursday, the online poker room is also gearing up for spiffy new giveaway to promote the upgraded software. Dubbed the “Around the World Dream Raffle,” Unibet will be giving two dozen phenomenal trips away, including one that will treat someone to a month-long vacation visiting some of the greatest locations on Earth.
Starting December 1st, the day the new poker client goes live, Unibet will randomly drop raffle tickets at the real money cash tables. The player on the button at the lucky table that is chosen at any given moment will win the Around the World Dream ticket, while the rest of the players at the table will be granted Unibet Open qualifier tickets.
All tickets are not created equal, however. The higher the stakes of the cash game table (No-Limit and Pot-Limit only, not Fixed-Limit), the better the potential prize. Here is how it breaks down:
Gold Raffle Ticket – NL/PL25 and above – €10 UO qualifier ticket for everyone else
Silver Raffle Ticket – NL/PL10 and above – €10 UO qualifier ticket for everyone else
Bronze Raffle Ticket – NL/PL4 and above – €2 UO qualifier ticket for everyone else
There will be 5 Gold tickets dropped per day, 10 Silver tickets per day, and 30 Bronze tickets per day. Everybody who wins a ticket will win something, even if it is not one of the biggest prizes.
SPEAKING OF…the ultimate prize for the Gold level is a 28-day journey to the “New 7 Wonders of the World,” a trip valued at £31,088. The Wonders and their locations include, in the order they would be visited:
Agra (Taj Mahal)
Beijing (Great Wall of China)
Cancun (Chechen Itza)
Cusco (Machu Picchu)
Rio De Janeiro (Christ the Redeemer)
Also included in the prize package is all the transportation and 4- and 5-star accommodations one would need.
Unibet is also awarding another 23 Gold ticket winners various trips such as a South African safari, sailing in Barcelona, and golf in Ireland. Non-trip winners will win Unibet Open packages or tournament tickets.
The top prizes for both the Silver and Bronze tiers are a €3,000 Travel Experience plus €2,000 cash. Other top Silver prizes include a laptop, a €2,000 Unibet DSO Mauritius package, and a €750 UK Tour package. The remainder of the prizes for both levels are tournament tickets.
The raffle will be held live on Twitch on Saturday, January 7th, 2017. The top prizes will be hand drawn and announced by David Vanderheyden, while the lower value prizes will be selected by an automated randomizer program. Winners will be notified via e-mail within seven days, so it is not necessary for raffle ticket holders to be watching the drawing as it happens.
Rare is it when the World Poker Tour holds a tournament and there is another event on that calendar that actually bests it not only as far as entries but also tops it with the prize pool. That happened at the end of the week as partypoker, the sponsor for the WPT Caribbean event held in Punta Cana last week (and won by Niall Farrell over Troy Quenneville) concluded that schedule with their partypoker Millions $ 2 Million Guaranteed event.
Over two Day Ones that were conducted while the WPT event was in its Day Two and Three action, the partypoker Millions drew in 526 entries, more than what came out for play in the WPT Caribbean itself. Although such players as Farrell, Tony Dunst and Martin Jacobsen came out for the tournament, only Jacobsen was around by the last day of the event. Leading the way was Quenneville, who had used his second-place finish money from the WPT Caribbean to jump into this event as a late entry.
Quenneville had more than a 2:1 lead over the second-place competitor, Andrei-Lucian Boghean, as the other 19 players behind them jostled for position. Among those players were Erik Cajelais, Ari Engel, Matt Salsberg and Jacobsen, with both Jacobsen and Salsberg on short stacks to start the action.
Engel got healthier from the start in knocking out Sviataslau Desimon in 20th place and growing his stack over the one million chip mark. Cajelais also made some moves towards the top of the leaderboard, knocking off Dominic Smith in 12th place as Cajelais popped into third place behind Quenneville and David Yan. Once Moritz Dietrich was eliminated in ninth place by Quenneville, it was looking increasingly likely it was Quenneville’s tournament to take.
How big was Quenneville’s lead, you ask? Look for yourselves:
1. Troy Quenneville, 8.1 million
2. David Yan, 3.5 million
3. Erik Cajelais, 2.8 million
4. Ari Engel, 2.6 million
5. Andrei-Lucian Boghean, 2.3 million
6. Fabion Jergen, 2.2 million
(tie) Edward Van Klooster, 2.2 million
8. Martin Kozlov, 300,000
After the players came back from dinner, they made quick work of the final table. Kozlov went on the very first hand back, thinking his pocket Aces would stand against Quenneville’s suited J-10 only to see the board run 10-8-5-J-4 to give Quenneville Jacks up and the hand. That wasn’t enough for Quenneville as he continued his rampage over the final table, eliminating Yan when Quenneville’s Big Slick rivered a King against Yan’s pocket sevens.
Eager to get into the fight, Cajelais came to life. After seeing Engel raise the betting to 160K, Cajelais three bet to 450K but had to stop after Engel moved all in on him. The moments to ponder saw Cajelais eventually fall on the side of a call, but it was initially the wrong move. Engel was sitting on A-K, which completely dominated Cajelais’ A-10, and the 5-7-A-5 flop and turn kept Engel in the lead. The 10♠ on the river, however, flipped the script completely, giving the hand to Cajelais and eliminating Engel in sixth place.
While Cajelais stepped up, the night still belonged to Quenneville. He eliminated Jergen in fifth and, after Van Klooster took out Boghean in fourth, Quenneville had a sizeable lead over both Van Klooster and Cajelais. Once Quenneville had taken down Van Klooster in third place, he entered heads up play against Cajelais with a monstrous 8:1 lead. It would take a few hands (two of which Cajelais would double his meager holdings) but, on the final hand, Quenneville’s A-10 stood over Cajelais’ A-8 on a 9-10-9-K-2 board to give Quenneville the championship.
1. Troy Quenneville, $ 400,000
2. Erik Cajelais, $ 250,000
3. Edward Van Klooster, $ 150,000
4. Andre-Lucian Boghean, $ 90,000
5. Fabian Jergen, $ 70,275
6. Ari Engel, $ 58,000
7. David Yan, $ 46,000
8. Martin Kozlov, $ 36,000
Along with his winnings from the WPT Caribbean tournament, Quenneville in the span of two days earned $ 620,000, a nice run for sunning yourself in Punta Cana! Congratulations to Troy and all those who came back from their trip with something in their pockets.
888poker is in the midst of a holiday-themed promotion with one of my favorite names ever, even if it is a little wordy: Gift Showers $ 800,000 Season of Giving Promotion. I’m just imagining my childhood self, cackling with glee as presents rain down on me, each one a mystery, possibly containing that thing that would make my wildest dreams come true. Now, 888’s promo isn’t exactly like this, but for those who play poker on the site, it’s a cheap and easy way to try to win prizes until the day after Christmas.
888 is hosting three different types of tournaments during the Gift Showers promotion:
All-In Gift Tournament – every day at 20:20 GMT through December 26th
$ 2,000 Lucky Star Tournament – every day at 01:05, 11:05, and 18:05 GMT through December 26th
$ 6,500 Starburst Tournament – every Sunday at 20:35 GMT through December 25th
The All-In Gift Tournament is another one of these tourneys we’re seeing more and more of in which all players have to do is register; showing up is optional. The software just puts everyone all-in pre-flop automatically until someone wins. For Gift Shower, the All-In Gift Tournament doesn’t award cash prizes. As the name implies, “gifts” are the reward. Here is a breakdown of the prize allocation:
Iphone 7 – 1st Place
GoPro Hero 5 Black – 2nd place
PlayStation 4 Slim – 3rd place
888poker Hoodie – 4th through 13th place
888poker Knitted Hat – 14th through 33rd place
888poker Cards – 34th through 53rd place
$ 5 CIP FreePlay voucher – 54th through 143rd place
$ 1 BLAST Ticket – 144th through 583rd place
$ 2,000 Lucky Star tournament ticket – 584th through 5000th place
In order to participate, players need entry tickets; everybody gets one for the All-In Gift Tournament and one for the $ 2,000 Lucky Star Tournament just for being a real money 888 customer. Up to three more tickets can also be earned for the All-In Gift Tournament each day (I guess it’s a multi-entry tourney) by doing the following:
• Play five or more BLAST tournaments with a minimum buy-in of $ 1
• Play in tournaments or Sit-and-Go’s (not counting BLAST or heads-up) with total buy-ins of at least $ 4
• Win 15 hands at the real money cash game tables with stakes of $ 0.02/$ 0.05 or higher
The only minor catch to the above is that in order to be eligible to earn those extra tickets, players must have played in the All-In Gift Tournament or $ 2,000 Lucky Star Tournament at least once. Since everyone gets one free ticket for each, that shouldn’t be a problem.
Tickets for the weekly $ 6,500 Starburst Tournament can be earned by completing a weekly mission, revealed in a Sunday e-mail. For that tournament, $ 5,000 of the prize pool is cash, while the rest is awarded to the winner in the form of a Bebop drone, a Sky controller and a Galaxy tablet.
Additional chances at tickets for the tourneys, plus other tournament tickets and free plays in the casino and sportsbook, are available via a Star Spin game. Everyone who has deposited at least once on 888 can spin up to two times per day, once on the desktop client and once on the mobile app.
The Global Poker League will wrap up their inaugural season beginning on Tuesday. By the end of the week – Thursday, to be precise – the first champion of the fledgling poker league will be crowned, with that champion taking down a $ 100,000 grand prize as their reward.
After playing through a grueling 14-week regular season that was split up pre- and post-World Series of Poker and battling through the “Summer Series” that saw the teams meet physically, the GPL determined the eight teams of the 12-team league that would compete for the GPL World Championship last month. These eight teams will play on Tuesday and Wednesday, with the two conferences deciding their champions on those days.
First up will be the GPL Americas on Tuesday, with the lineup going off as such:
#1 Montreal Nationals (130K in chips) vs. #4 San Francisco Rush (100K), 3PM Eastern Time
#3 Sao Paulo Metropolitans (110K) vs. #2 L. A. Sunset (120K) 4:30PM Eastern Time
Each team will choose three players from their roster for the “best of seven” (meaning a team will need to win four matches) heads up schedules that will take place (a fourth player can also be chosen by the manager that can take the place of one of the original three team members, but that swap can only be done at the start of a series). As the higher seeds, both the Nationals and the Sunset will get to see the rosters of their opponents before setting their lineups (another benefit of having a better regular season record in addition to the extra chips), which will be critical to finding just the right player combination for the fight at hand. The victors of those two matches will meet at 6PM (Eastern Time) to determine the champion of the GPL Americas.
On Wednesday, it will be the GPL Eurasia’s turn to hit “The Cube” in Las Vegas:
#1 Moscow Wolverines (130K) vs. #4 London Royals (100K), 3PM Eastern Time
#3 Berlin Bears (110K) vs. #2 Hong Kong Stars (120K), 4:30PM Eastern Time
The same format as for the GPL Americas on Tuesday will hold for the GPL Eurasia on Wednesday. The teams will have three of their players on hand for battle, with each schedule being decided on a “best of seven” heads up format and the final two teams expected to hit “The Cube” to determine the champion at 6PM (Eastern Time).
There are some interesting twists that will ensure that all players will get in “The Cube.” Each player must have played at least once in the contest before a player can make a repeat appearance. After each of the three players have been used on a set schedule from the manager, the managers for each team can then name – on a player-by-player basis – who will enter “The Cube” next for the team.
Once each conference has determined their champion, Thursday will be “Championship Day” for one of those two teams and the GPL itself. The GPL Championship will see each team enter “The Cube” in a “best of nine” (five victories to win) series. Each team will start off with 500K in chips for each match and neither team will have any advantage – no knowledge of the other team’s lineup, no chip advantage, nothing.
From a look at the way things are set with the schedule, it is possible to see that the GPL Americas teams might have an advantage. Playing on their “home court” per se because they are in the country, the Americas teams will be on their normal schedule. This might be negated if the GPL Eurasia teams arrive a bit early to get their team members (and their “body clocks”) on the same schedule as the Americas teams (3PM Eastern is late evening in Europe and early morning in Asia, not to mention noon in Las Vegas where the matches will take place). Teams like the Wolverines (with their all-Russian lineup) and the Stars (with their Chinese roster) could have their work cut out for them.
By Thursday, the first champion will make history for the GPL. Who will it be? Follow along at the GPL website, where you can watch the action on their live stream from Las Vegas and where you can also get in on their Bracket Challenge!