Wednesday 7 November 2007

World Cup and new record

World Cup and new record
By Mick McCloskey

Last month I mentioned the Poker Stars World Cup of Poker and promised a tournament report this month. Unfortunately, due to issues of space, this has not proved to be possible. However, I just wish to share a few details and memories here. The Irish team of qualifiers managed to play their way into the last eight to win an all expenses paid trip to Barcelona for the live finals. At this stage Poker Stars added a guest player to each team and I had the honour of being picked as the Irish team’s guest player. All the heats and the final were recorded for television so watch out for the broadcast. I’m not sure what channel it will be on but I will let you know as soon as possible.
Two of the better known players to be picked as guests were Greg Raymer for USA and Daniel Negreanu for Canada. Both of these guys made a big impression on all the teams in Spain. On the first night there we were treated to a reception in one of the beachside restaurants followed by a free roll for about $1,600 in the casino afterwards. Daniel, along with EPT tournament director, Thomas Kremser, got to be dealers for the night. Greg managed to get knocked out early and spent the next couple of hours teaching a bunch of guys around his table how to play three different games, 2-7 draw, Baduki and another game, which is a combination of these two games, with split pot possibilities. Not only did he explain the mechanics of the games but also explained the best strategy to employ. What a goldmine of information this former WSOP champion is and quite happy to share it all.
Daniel had mixed loyalties as he was playing for Canada but he also had a real affinity with the Romanian team, his country of origin, and was able to communicate with the Romanians in their native language.
Suffice to say that a great time was had by all, win or lose, and many good memories will have been taken to many different parts of the world following this event.


Ireland has yet again broken all European records for tournament poker. At the recent International Poker Open in Dublin, a €150 buy-in event, organisers Stephen McClean and Derek Williams, from, managed to accommodate 1,072 players, representing 17 different countries. Irishman Colin King managed to keep a lot of the prize money in Ireland by taking top spot and €32,000. In second was David Pook from Netherlands winning €17,850 while €9,075 went to Daniel Rudd from UK for third spot. has announced further details about next year’s €3 million guaranteed Irish Open. The venue has been revealed to be the excellent Citywest Hotel to the south west of Dublin. The complex has two hotels with a total of 1,314 rooms, two golf courses and a health and Leisure Club. The dates are from 19th to 24th March and the tournament capacity has been set at 1,000. They have also announced that the longest lasting paddypowerpoker qualifier will receive free entry into the 2009 event and, should one of their qualifiers win the Open, he/she will receive free entry into the following five Opens. Qualifying satellites are currently underway on has announced that the Irish Poker Championship 2008 will be held at the Radisson Hotel and Spa in Galway from 3rd to 6 January. The event will be sponsored by and will be Europe’s first major tournament of 2008. The event will kick off with a €200 + 20 super satellite for seats in the €2,000 main event. Two support events will also feature in the programme.
A spokesman said “We’re very pleased to sponsor this well established, highly regarded tournament and Ireland is a great country for poker with an amazing pedigree.”
Qualifying satellites are running in pubs and clubs across Ireland and online at

Finally, legendary Irish tournament director and card room manager, Luke Ivory, has opened a new casino and card room in Dublin, known, funnily enough, as Cool Hand Luke’s. Luke, who honed his skills for years at the Merrion Casino and at The Fitzwilliam Club, has returned to his old stomping ground at 81 Merrion Square (ex Merrion Casino) where he has instigated a full weekly tournament programme and cash games on demand. He is also running a monthly €330 two day special, with a Saturday start and a Sunday finish. For further details, call 003531 662 9325 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting 003531 662 9325 end_of_the_skype_highlighting