Poker News Round-up
Brought to you every Friday
Poker News Round-up: Week #50
The European Poker Awards held at the Aviation Club in Paris saw Russian Alexander Kravchenko crowned as player of the year ahead of fellow nominees Roland de Wolfe and Julian Thew. Kravchenko, who was voted rookie of the year in 2001, picked up the award after several notable performances in 2007 including a World Series win at Omaha hi/lo, fourth place at the main event, four other WSOP cashes and a final table appearance at the WSOP Europe HORSE event.
The tournament performance of the year award, won by The Hendon Mob’s Barny Boatman in 2002, went to Annette Obrestad for her victory in the WSOPE main event although Carlos Mortensen was in with a good shout for his WPT grand final victory. However Obrestad wasn’t voted Europe’s leading lady, an award that went to German Katja Thater who became the first woman in three years to win an open WSOP event this summer with her razz win.
The lifetime achievement award has previously always been won by a player but this year Thomas Kremser collected the award for his work as a tournament director and involvement in several other poker related events. A special award was also given in honour of tv producer Rob Gardner who passed away earlier this year. Jesse May collected the award in recognition of Gardner’s work on the pioneering show Late Night Poker.
Also taking place at the Aviation Club this week were the Euro Finals Of Poker where there was an English one/two in the main event. The €5,000 no limit hold’em event saw three Englishmen make the final table from a field of mostly French players. Stuart Rutter finished seventh whilst Mark Friedman and Joe Grech were left as the last two men standing. It was Grech who emerged victorious for a prize of €132,400, adding to a succession of strong tournament finishes in the last few months.
The Doyle Brunson Five Diamond World Poker Classic festival has been running since late November and whilst the $15,000 main event is not due to finish until next Tuesday, the preliminary events have had some pretty impressive prize pools. The biggest so far saw J C Tran add further to a stunning year when he beat a field of 307 to win the $5,000 buy in event. The $523,075 for first place saw Tran’s tournament winnings for the year shoot up towards the $3 million mark.
The full schedule for the 2008 World Series Of Poker was released this week, and once again there will be 55 bracelets to play for next summer. One of the main differences next time around is that there will be eight $10,000 buy in events compared with just two in 2007. The $50,000 HORSE event stays and in addition to the bracelet future winners of this event will receive a trophy named after the late 2006 champion Chip Reese. The large buy in may mean that this is the mixed games event which is regarded as the most prestigious, but in 2008 there will be a tournament which tests an even wider range of poker skills. Known as the mixed event, this will feature rotating rounds of limit and no limit hold’em, pot limit Omaha and Omaha hi/lo, seven card stud and stud hi/lo, razz and deuce to seven triple draw.
Anyone who was unfortunate enough to be seated in the smelly, sweltering poker pavilion this year will be pleased to know that the tent is definitely abolished for 2008. The opening $1,500 event which always attracts a massive entry will get around having to use inappropriate parts of the casino to seat players by having two day ones.
A final note to the Sorel Mizzi/Chris Vaughn cheating episode is that Vaughn has lost his job with Bluff Media. When Mizzi and Vaughn admitted to the account buying, Bluff initially released the following statement:
Bluff’s initial decision to stand by their man appears not to have been received very well by somebody influential though as just a few days later Vaughn was dismissed and a new statement was issued:
That money from the Pokerstars win looks like it’s going to come in handy then. Meanwhile, life goes on for Mizzi. Having won the $100 rebuy on Pokerstars as Zangbezan24 for $45,275 last Sunday, Mizzi also recently became Tournament Titan as Imper1um on Titan Poker. This was a freeroll hosted by Titan for the first twenty players to qualify by making three consecutive final tables in participating tournaments. Mizzi achieved this in December 2006 and has been waiting for the game to fill up for the past year. It was worth the wait though as he took first place for $188,000 plus a package to the WSOP main event next year. Whether people regard him as a kid that made a naïve mistake or a despicable cheat, there can be no denying that he is some player and possibly someone who will go on to be remembered as one of the game’s biggest achievers.
Get sponsored by the Mob