Archive for August, 2012

Mikalai Pobal wins European Poker Tour Barcelona Main Event

by | Published: Tuesday, August 28th, 2012

Mikalai Pobal has scored the biggest victory of his poker career by winning the European Poker Tour Barcelona Main Event.

Pobal outlasted a field of 1081 other players to take the first prize of €1,007,550.

The result was easily the highlight of the Germans poker career with his previous best result being a 104th place finish in the European Poker Tour Berlin Main Event earlier this year.

Pobal showed great patience and a cool head to win the six day tournament that included an eleven hour final table and was very proud of his achievement.

“It was a really long tournament and I’m really excited about winning this tournament. Like all poker players I have dreamt of winning such a tournament so I’m very happy now,” Pobal said in his post-tournament interview.

At one stage in the final table it appeared as though Joni Jouhkimainen was running away with the tournament as the Finn held almost seventy-five percent of chips when the table became three-handed.

However, Pobal played extremely well, after the action became three-handed, and doubled through both Jouhkimainen and second place finisher Ilari Sahamies.

Joukimainen finished in third place and took home €404,050.

The heads up battle between Pobal and high-stakes player Sahamies lasted barely fifteen minutes, with Pobal questioning the play of his opponent after the tournament.

“It (the heads-up battle) was really quick. I don’t know why he wanted to with his final hand (Nine-Five Suited) but it was his choice and my choice was to call with Aces. It was an easy choice,” Pobal laughed.

The European Poker Tour takes a break for a month before returning at on the 5th of October at Sanremo Casino in Italy.

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Cartwright wins fifth World Series of Poker Circuit Ring

by | Published: Sunday, August 26th, 2012

Kyle Cartwright has won the $1675 World Series of Poker Circuit Main Event at IP Casino Resort in Biloxi to become just the second person ever to win five World Series of Poker Circuit tournaments.

Cartwright outlasted 299 other players to take the first prize of $107,992.

The victory means that Cartwright is now tied with Mark Smith for the most World Series of Poker Circuit championship rings.

Cartwright was extremely proud of his achievement and does not plan on stopping at five rings.

“It feels good and it hasn’t taken that long. It’s been about two years and I hope to get a lot more in the next few years. If someone gets six, I want seven. Whatever the record is, I want it,” Cartwright said in a post tournament interview.

Cartwright went into the final table as a big chip leader with 2,232,000 in chips compared to second place John Dolan who had 1,207,000.

Cartwright held his chip advantage the entire final table and won the heads up battle against Brad Johnson after only three hands of play.

Smith did not attend the tournament but followed at home as it looked more and more likely that Cartwright would win the tournament to go even with his record mark.

“I couldn’t be more pleased it was him. He is not only a really nice guy but a wonderful player. I’m flattered to be in such good company. These young guys play two to three times the stops I do and I’m sure over time I will be passed up, but from 2009 to now I have either been tied or held the world record in rings. How blessed am I,” Smith said in an interview with the World Series of Poker.

Cartwright and Smith will both attend the World Series of Poker Circuit event to be played at Horseshoe Bossier City next month.


Judge Rules Poker a Game of Skill

by | Published: Friday, August 24th, 2012

Poker has been ruled a game of skill, not chance, by a United States federal judge.

The ruling is a massive boost to poker players all over the United States and means that poker game operators should not be prosecuted under the federal law that prohibits the running of an illegal gambling business.

United States District Court Judge Jack Weinstein threw out the conviction of a man who was charged for hosting a high-stakes poker game in a New York warehouse.

“The government must demonstrate that it is more probable than not that poker is predominated by chance rather than skill. It has failed to do so. Expert poker players draw on an array of talents, including facility with numbers, knowledge of human psychology, and powers of observation and deception,” he wrote. “Players can use these skills to win, even if chance has not dealt them the better hand,” Judge Weinstein wrote in his 120-page opinion.

The ruling has been celebrated by the entire poker community.

The Poker Player’s Alliance, a nonprofit organization with more than one million members worldwide, were ecstatic that their hard work protecting the rights of poker players had finally paid off.

“As we worked for years defending players against vague gambling laws, we have patiently waited for the right opportunity to raise the issue in federal court. Today’s federal court ruling is a major victory for the game of poker and the millions of Americans who enjoy playing it,” said John Pappas, executive director of the PPA, in a statement.

“Judge Weinstein’s thoughtful decision recognizes what we have consistently argued for years: poker is not a crime, it is a game of skill. As the judge’s opinion aptly notes, poker is an American pastime that is deeply embedded in the history and fabric of our nation and his decision sets aside the notion that the vague laws render the game criminal.”

The decision is likely to be used as leverage for those advocating the legalization of Online Poker.


Dan Smith Wins 2012 EPT Barcelona Super High Roller

by | Published: Wednesday, August 22nd, 2012

Dan Smith has won the 2012 EPT Barcelona €50,000 Super High Roller to become the first major European Poker Tour winner of the season.

Smith began the final table as chip leader and stayed in that position until the early stages of heads-up play with JC Alvarado.

The American won the chip lead back shortly after and pulled away to a sizeable lead.

The tournament ended with a cooler of hand, with Smith’s Ace-King out flopping Alvarado’s pocket Kings to give Smith the €962,925 first-place prize and Shamballa bracelet.

“He (Alvarado) is a very tough player and when he got the chip lead he became the favorite but I just tried to play my best and hope that I was able to get lucky and I did,” Smith said in a post tournament interview.

Smith was joined at the final table by good friends Mike Watson and Erik Seidel who amazingly all flew into Barcelona on the same flight.

“It didn’t really feel like we were playing for a lot of money you know. We were mostly hanging out and in between hands I was just chatting with Mike. It was fun and it’s nice to see your friends do well,” the popular Professional Poker Player said.

The win was Smith’s fifth victory in 2012; after winning the $100,000 Challenge in the Aussie Millions Poker Championships and three separate events at the Monte Carlo Casino European Poker Tour Grand Final in April.

Smith also had a successful 2012 World Series of Poker, cashing on five occasions including a third place in the $5,000 No Limit Hold’em event.

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Anthony Gregg wins World Poker Tour Parx Open Poker Classic

by | Published: Monday, August 20th, 2012

Professional Poker player Anthony Gregg has claimed his first-ever live tournament win, with victory in the World Poker Tour Parx Open Poker Classic.

Gregg started the final table in second place and stayed in that position for most of the day’s action before grinding out the win in heads-up competition with Stephen Reynolds.

The win broke a live tournament drought for Gregg, who had gone extremely close to winning several big tournaments in the past.

Gregg was the runner-up in the 2009 Pokerstars Pokerstars Caribbean Adventure Main Event, finished third in the European Poker Tour Grand Final 6-Max Turbo High Roller and fourth in the No-Limit Hold’em four handed event in this year’s World Series of Poker.

Gregg was consistent throughout the days play and entered the heads-up battle with 5.32 million in chips compared to Reynolds 9.55 million.

Gregg slowly chipped away at Reynolds advantage but struggled to gain momentum in the back and forth battle, grabbing the chip lead but losing it right back to Reynolds the next hand.

The killer blow came when Gregg’s King-Nine hit on the flop to beat Reynolds Ace-Four.

The American was delighted to finally walk away with a major poker title.

“It feels amazing. I’ve played so many live tournaments and I’ve come close a bunch of times, and just come up short. I’ve always wanted that feeling of actually winning because it just feels so much better than getting second, or any other place. The money’s always nice, but the title is good, too, and just knowing that you beat everyone,” Gregg said in his post-tournament interview.

The winner’s prize of $ 416,127 was not the biggest payday of Gregg’s poker career but with so many close calls it surely means the most.

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