Reneging and bad blood, Spanish poker, Dutch plans, and PokerStars tournaments.
It’s been a busy old time here in England. Last weekend, a lot of people crowded into London to shout at an old lady on a boat, as part of a big ‘thank you’ party for giving us two days of extra holiday, or something like that.
Meanwhile the rest of the world sent their poker ambassadors to Las Vegas for the WSOP, so you might think this would be a quiet week for non-American poker news. You’d be right of course, but it hasn’t been a totally barren period so stop looking so smug.
There’s a lot of talk among poker players about the nobility of their business. Such as a man only being as good as his word. The flipside of this is that when something goes awry all that dirty laundry gets a very public airing. The latest whistle blower is Douglas “WCGrider” Polk, who is claiming missing payments from Brad Booth. The player known as “Yukon” lost over $1,000,000 in the Ultimate Bet cheating scandal and has reportedly been borrowing money left right and centre. That includes $30,000 from WCGrinder, of which only $2,000 has been paid back. Booth has now changed his phone number and left the country. [TwoPlusTwo]
British pro Sam Trickett is threatening to reveal the identity of his own bad debtor, unless the unnamed (but apparently well-known) player pays up. [Tight Poker]
After a couple of minor bumps in the road, Spain has finally put its new regulatory plan into action. Companies hoping to operate in the country are required to apply for a license, which the Spanish seem only too happy to grant. PokerStars are already up and running, alongside familiar names like bwin.party, 888, and Bet365. The latest company to be granted an Iberian permit is British betting exchange, Betfair. [Reuters]
Online Casino Reports suggest that the Netherlands are looking to “adopt the Danish model”. Presumably this news concerns online gambling regulations and not foster parentage of a pastry statue. The Dutch currently have laws in place to prevent their citizens playing online, but much like UIGEA-era U.S.A everyone just ignores them. Unlike America, the government’s response has been to draw up plans for an open, regulated market. It parallels the system in Denmark, in that online casinos will be charged a lower rate of tax than their bricks-and-mortar counterparts. [Online Casino Reports]
The huge jumble of tournaments over at PokerStars is undergoing some reconstruction. First up, the Macau Poker Cup has been cancelled. No reason has been given other than, “events beyond our reasonable control,” which could be pretty much anything. Maybe they got wind that the high stakes cash game players aren’t planning to trek back to Asia after the WSOP finishes. [Card Player]
It’s OK, dry your eyes, there’s a new online jem to take your mind off Macau. The MicroMillions festival is like the World Series for people who pay for things with loose change. There are one hundred events of all different shapes and sizes, with buy-ins ranging from $0.11 to $22. [PokerNews]
There’s a lot of Jubilee detritus littering the streets right now. I’ll do my best to avoid it and so long as I’m not swallowed up in a storm of bunting and miniature flags, I shall see you next week for more news from the Wider World of Poker.