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More Packages Sold for 2018 Battle of Malta Than All Years Combined!
You think past Battles of Malta have been big? Wait till you get a look at 2018.The best-value low buy-in poker festival in Europe will be the biggest it has ever been in 2018 with package pre-sales already eclipsing all previous years … combined. You read that right: A festival that broke its own record for biggest poker tournament on Malta 6 consecutive times has now sold more packages for 2018 than it has for all previous years combined. You can guess what that means for this year’s Main Event prize pool (already guaranteed at €1m, twice last year’s) and expanded schedule of side events: Some lucky BoM players are gonna get paid. Big time. New Venue, New Host, New Energy The 2018 Battle of Malta Festival (running Oct. 25-30) will see more poker players stream through its doors than ever before so it’s a good thing it also has a new venue – the largest 5-star Hotel in Malta. The spectacular 3,000 m2 Eden Arena at the InterContinental Hotel will play host to this year’s festivities thanks to the Battle of Malta’s new ownership group, Eden Leisure Group (ELG). Big event, big space. ELG owns Casino Malta, the 5-star InterContinental Hotel, the Holiday Inn Express and the InterContinental Arena Conference center which means 2018 BoM attendees will be able to take advantage of all it has to offer, from spas to pools to restaurants to nightlife to the biggest casino floor in Malta.  The tournament room itself will host 140 tables, 70 more than last year! With streamlined registration and improved traffic flow along with it, more players will get a shot at those massive BoM prize pools than ever before. The Eden Group’s widespread reach across other gaming venues in Italy, Spain and even Bulgaria has already produced dozens of satellite winners and created unprecedented buzz in Southern Europe. With another strong turnout coming from Scandinavia and package pre-sales exploding, the 2018 BoM Festival is set up to smash Maltese poker records yet again. Want a sneak peek of how things will look? Check out our video tour with host Laura Cornelius below: Satellites from 1c on 888poker Until Oct. 14! Adding even more players to the mix this year will be 888poker, joining back as one of the main sponsors as they now have what they need to cater for all their players who will be attending the Battle of Malta. With 2018 BoM satellites already running on 888poker and continuing daily right up until Oct. 14, just 10 days before the festival begins, tables will be flush with 888 qualifiers. Satellites start as low as 1 cent on 888poker and lead to the official weekly BoM qualifiers which award amazing packages that include: €550 Main Event buy-in 4 nights at the 5-star InterContinental Hotel Money for travel Daily buffet Tickets to BoM VIP party and The much-loved 888poker live event kit 888poker ambassadors Sofia Lovgren and Ana Marquez are also scheduled to attend. Players can aexpect plenty of 888 swag distributed over the 5 days plus an 888-inspired lounge area near the tournament room. Expect some 888 pro selfie opps, too. Crazy 888's, EPS, MPNPT Highlight Side Events We mentioned the new €1 million guarantee. We mentioned the huge new venue. We mentioned the major hype building around Europe. What else is new on the 2018 Battle of Malta schedule? At least 3 new side events are on the schedule highlighted by 888poker’s ultra popular Crazy 888’s Battle. The €88+8 Win the Button event will have 8k starting stacks, 18 minute levels, unlimited re-entries and, we expect, a gigantic first-place payout. Also making its first appearance on the BoM calendar is the European Poker Series Battle. The popular French series launches its first BoM side event this year with a €300+30 NLH event with unlimited re-entries. Starting stacks will be 30k and levels will be 25 minutes. Last but not least the MPN Poker Tour makes its debut at BoM with a one-day €135+15 NLH MPNPT Battle on Monday Oct. 29 at 6 pm. Starting stack is 20k and levels are 20 minutes. Other returning side events on the schedule: €110 BoM Ladies event €165 PLO Double Chance €220 IPC Battle Turbo 2-day €245 Siege of Malta Second Chance 2-day €1,320 High Roller Daily €55+5 Super Satellites for the Main Event will run at Casino Malta leading up to the festival and on Oct. 25th and 26th. For a full rundown of start times, starting stacks, level times, entry limits and satellites during the festival check the full 2018 Battle of Malta Calendar. See the full structures for the 2018 Battle of Malta Main Event and side events here.  Online Satellites Continue on MPN! For all the Scandinavian fans of the Battle of Malta, you haven't been overlooked with daily online satellites on all MPN network sites. Satellites start at €0.55 and run at €2.20, €3.30, €5.50, €11, €55, €135 and €200 as well Full €1,500 packages to the 2018 BoM can be won which include: €550 buy-in to €1m Battle of Malta Main Event €150 entry into MPNPT Battle Side Event 5-nights at Holiday Inn Express (or similar) for you and a guest including breakfast Welcome Party on Oct. 26 @ Casino Malta VIP area for BOM party on Oct. 28 with limited free bar MPNPT @ Battle of Malta last longer with 3 x €1,500 MPNPT packages to win (Platinum sponsor qualifiers only) VIP chill out room (Platinum sponsor qualifiers only) €200 for travel and expenses Log in to Guts Poker, Redbet Poker, Betsson, Nordic Bet or Betsafe Poker for more details and satellite start times.Visit

John Cynn Wins 2018 WSOP Main Event for $8.8 Million!
When you once outlast over 6,700 players and finish 11th in the $10,000 WSOP Main Event, you might think you've used up all of your poker run good once and for all.Not John Cynn. He was just taking out a small withdrawal. The 33-year-old Indianapolis native astounded the poker world last night in Las Vegas by winning the 2018 WSOP Main Event Championship for $8.8 million - just two years after his 11th-place finish in 2016. It was a remarkable run by Cynn over the course of 10 days and capped off by a 10-hour, 199-hand heads-up marathon against runner up Tony Miles. Miles earned $5m for his runner-up finish. "Literally Something That You Dream Of" "Feels very different," Cynn told shortly after his win. "I mean really neither is supposed to happen. "To make 11th is insane on its own, and to win, that's literally something that you dream of but you just never expect to happen. Right now I do feel pretty overwhelmed." "I do like to think that I don't need the money to be happy, but at the same time it's practically going to make things a lot easier. Tony Miles & John Cynn (Photo: Joe Giron, WSOP) "Things I want to do in life, things for my family, and my parents. To my parents this is money that they could have never imagined. It'll definitely be life-changing." Outside of Cynn's two WSOP Main Event finishes (worth $9.45 million in total) he has about $300,000 in career live tournament earnings. 2009 Champ Cada Finishes 5th The top 6 finishers in this year's Main Event were all from the United States and each earned at least $1.8 million. Players from Australia, the Ukraine and France rounded out the final table of nine. The final table in total took 442 hands. Amazingly 2009 WSOP Main Event Champion Joe Cada also made the final table and finished 5th for another $2.15m payday. Cada also won his third career WSOP gold bracelet early in the series making 2018 another banner year at the WSOP for the Michigan native. Chip leader after Day 8, Michael Dyer, ended up third. 2018 WSOP Main Event Final Table Results 1. John Cynn United States $8,800,0002. Tony Miles United States $5,000,0003. Michael Dyer United States $3,750,0004. Nicolas Manion United States $2,825,0005. Joe Cada United States $2,150,0006. Aram Zobian United States $1,800,0007. Alex Lynskey Australia $1,500,0008. Artem Metalidi Ukraine $1,250,0009. Antoine Labat France $1,000,000 More Quick Facts about 2018 WSOP Main Event -- With 7,874 players it's the second biggest Main Event in history. 2018 is ahead of 2010 (7,319 players), 2017 (7,221 players) and 2011 (6,865 players) The 2006 edition holds the record with 8,773 players. -- A total of 1,182 players were paid in this Main Event which is a new record due to the recent extension of the payout table (15%). Kelly Minkin 2018 WSOP (Photo: Joe Giron, WSOP) -- Another new record was the number of players for a Day 1 round: 4,571 for Day 1C. -- Of these 7,874 participants 301 were female players, representing 3.8% of the field. This is about average. -- American Kelly Minkin who finished 50th is, for the second time, the Last Woman Standing in the Main Event. She also did it one time before in 2015 (29th) -- Reigning WSOP Main Event title holder Scott Blumstein was eliminated on Day 1. -- Only 4 players have won 2 Main Event titles (Johnny Moss (1970 by vote , 1971, 1974), Doyle Brunson (1976, 1977), Johnny Chan (1987, 1988), and Stu Ungar (1980, 1981, 1997)) - all long before the poker boom of 2003 and its 6,500+-player fields:  -- The oldest participant this year was American John Olsen, 88 years old. -- After a change in the schedule, the Main Event is not the final WSOP tournament. The November Nine break was also eliminated -- The Amazon Room was plunged into darkness at the end of Day 5 due to a big storm that hit Las Vegas. There was an hour left and although the generator quickly took over, the organizers decided to finish earlier. -- A remarkable hand happened on the final-table bubble to eliminate Yueqi Zhu and send Nicolas Manion into the final table as the chip leader. Watch the hand below: 2018 WSOP By the Numbers ~~~ STATISTICS ~~~ Finished tournaments: 78/78Entrants: 123,865Cashes: 17,916Distributed Money: $268,762,293Millionaires: 10Most entries: 13,070 (Event 7 - $565 Colossus)Least entries: 27 (Event 78 - $1m Big One for One Drop)Biggest prize pool: $74,015,600 ($10,000 Main Event)Smallest prize pool: $351,000 (Event 14 - $1,500 2-7 Draw Lowball) 2018 Rankings by Country (Bracelets Won) 1. United States: 532. Germany, China: 34. France, England, Israel, Canada, Russia: 29. Brazil, Colombia, Bulgaria, Australia, Austria, Spain, Portugal, India, Philippines, Netherlands: 1 (Note: The team tournament saw a pair of winners). New Winners: 57Second Victory: 8Third Victory: 7Fourth Victory: 5Fifth Victory: 1Beyond 5th Victory: 1 Double Winners in 2018: Shaun Deeb (Event 42, Event 74) Joe Cada (Event 3, Event 75) Justin Bonomo (Event 16, Event 78) More 2018 WSOP Results of Note: Hellmuth Claims 15th Career Bracelet in Event #71, $5,000 NLHE Three years after his last coronation, the unsinkable Phil Hellmuth won his 15th World Series of Poker gold bracelet on July 11th to stretch out his overall lead in all-time WSOP bracelet race. (Photo: WSOP) Hellmuth took down the bracelet in Event #71: $5,000 No-Limit Hold'em (30-minute levels) for $485,082, defeating Steven Wolansky heads-up. Overshadowed slightly by the playdown to the final table of the Main Event (and particularly by its blokcbuster bubble hand), Hellmuth still managed to seize a portion of the spotlight and further the beliefs of those who feel he’s the greatest WSOP player of all time. Hellmuth is now 5 bracelets ahead of his three closest pursuers, Doyle Brunson, Johnny Chan and Phil Ivey. Only Ivey has managed to stay in touch recently (having won his last victories in 2013 and 2014); Brunson and Chan haven’t won since 2005. Hellmuth: "A New Lesson in Humility" The records continue to pile up for Hellmuth, who is still the only winner of two main Main Events (Las Vegas and WSOP Europe) and also a winner in each of the last four decades.  He also holds the WSOP record for the number of cashes (134) and final tables (59). Said Phil after his win: "This is a new lesson of humility for me, as were the 13th and 14th ... I did not have a great summer, but I stayed positive, always. Every night when I returned to my room I said to myself ‘life is beautiful, relax.’(...) ‘I was also forced to rest, I had a small atrial fibrillation. It's not too bad, 40% of people over 60 have that, but it made me take a lot of days without poker. "I feel a responsibility to inspire people. This bracelet I will offer to one of my best friends, Bill Lee. He is the best angel investor and the best friend of Elon Musk. I promised him that I would win him a bracelet, but it was a long time. “ This bracelet is everything for me, because my life is poker. Then I try to spread the positive. I hope that I will be remembered for two reasons, the first to have 24 bracelets, and the second to have a lot of positive influence on people's lives.” Phil Hellmuth’s 15 WSOP Bracelets (1989) No-Limit Hold'em $10,000 Main Event - 178 players – Beat Johnny Chan $755,000 (1992) $5,000 Limit Hold'em - 84 players, beat Steve Kopp (USA) - $168,000 (1993) $1,500 No-Limit Hold'em - 284 players - beat Chris Tsiprailidis (USA) - $426,000 $2,500 No-Limit Hold'em - 173 players - beat Noli Francisco (TCH) - $432,500 $5,000 Limit Hold'em - 69 players - beat Don Williams (USA) - $345,000 (1997)  $3,000 Pot-Limit Hold'em - 170 players - Tom McEvoy (USA) - $510,000 (2001) $2,000 No-Limit Hold'em - 441 players - beat TJ Cloutier (USA) - $855,540 (2003) $2,500 Limit Hold'em - 194 players - beat Young Phan (USA) - $451,050 $3,000 No-Limit Hold'em - 398 players - beat Daniel Negreanu (CAN) - $410,860 (2006) $1,000 No-Limit Hold'em - 754 d. + 1691 r. - beat Juha Helppi (FIN) - $631,863 (2007) $1,500 No-Limit Hold'em - 2628 players - beat Andy Philachack (USA) - $637,254 (2012) $2,500 Razz - 309 players - beat Don Zewin (USA) - $182,793 €10,000 NLHE WSOPE Main Event - 420 players - beat Sergii Baraniv (UKR) - €1,022,376 (2015) $10,000 Razz - 103 players - beat Mike Gorodinsky (USA) - $271,105 (2018) $5,000 No-Limit Hold'em - 452 players - beat Steven Wolansky (USA) - $485,082 Event 78 - $ 1,000,000 The Big One for One Drop (NLHE) 27 entrants (5 paid) - Prize Pool $24,840,000 Winner: Justin Bonomo (32 years old, US) - $10,000,000 beats Fedor Holz (Germany) $6,000,000 Rest of money finishers: 3. Dan Smith (USA) - $4,000,000 4. Rick Salomon (USA) - $2,840,000 5. Byron Kaverman (USA) - $2,000,000 In short: 3rd WSOP bracelet for Bonomo (in 15 final tables) and his 2nd this Series (he won Event #16, $10,000 Heads-Up) Incredible 2018 for Bonomo who before this victory had already earned nearly $15m with 9 victories in tournaments with buy-ins of at least $10,000 With this big win Bonomo also takes over the #1 spot on the All Time Money List ahead of Daniel Negreanu Bonomo succeeds Antonio Esfandiari (Big One 2012 ), Dan Colman (Big One 2014 ) and Elton Tsang (WSOPE Big One 2016) as winners of Big One This is the lowest turnout in four editions of the Big One with the number of players declining each time (48, 42, 28 and 27) This is the 3rd cash in this tournament for famed Paris Hilton/Pamela Anderson Ex Rick Salomon (4th in 2014 and 3rd in 2016) Event 77 - $50,000 No-Limit Hold'em High Roller (BB Antes) 128 entrants (20 paid) - Prize Pool $6,144,000 Winner: Ben Yu (32 years old, US) - $1,650,773 beat Sean Winter (United States) - $1,020,253 Notable players: 3. Nick Petrangelo (USA) - $720 103 4. Isaac Haxton (USA) - $518,882 5. Igor Kurganov (Russia) - $381,874 6. Manig Loeser (Germany) - $287,174 7. John Racener (USA) - $220,777 9. Elio Fox (USA) - $139,699 10. Benjamin Pollak (France) - $139,699 11. Jason Koon (USA) - $115,102 12. Ryan Riess (USA) - $115,103 13. Mustapha Kanit (Italy) - $97,160 17. Stefan Schillhabel (Germany) - $74,623 In short: 3rd WSOP bracelet for Ben Yu, a professional based in Las Vegas. He had won his two previous bracelets in 2015 ($10,000 Limit Hold'em Championship) and in 2017 ($10,000 2-7 Triple Draw Championship). It was his 11th final table (including 4 this summer, all Top 4!) in 70 WSOP cashes (15 this summer). His WSOP earnings now exceed $4m Event 76 - $3,000 HORSE 354 entrants (54 paid) - Prize Pool $955,800 Winner: Brian Hastings (30 years old, US ) - $ 233,202 beat Andrew Brown (United States) - $144,128 Notable players: 4. Jeff Madsen (USA) - $67,121 5. Lee Markholt (USA) - $47,275 7. Dutch Boyd (USA) - $25,040 8. Bruno Fitoussi (France) - $18,849 11. John Hennigan (USA) ) - $11,456 In short: 4th WSOP bracelet for Brian Hastings. He also won in 2012 ($10k HU) and two in 2015 ($10k 7-Stud and $1,500 10-Game Mix) 11 final tables in 34 WSOP cashes for him. His WSOP earnings now exceed $2 million. His heads-up opponent Andrew Brown could not take advantage of his 5-on-1 advantage at the start of the final duel Other previous WSOP winners at the final table: Jeff Madsen (4) and Dutch Boyd (3) Event 75 - $1,500 The No-Limit Hold'em Closer (30-Min Levels) 3,120 entrants (457 paid) - Prize Pool $4,212,000 Winner: Joe Cada (30 years old, US) - $ 612,886 beat Paawan Bansal (India) - $378,675 In short: 4th WSOP bracelet for Joe Cada and his 2nd this summer! Huge end of World Series for the former World Champion 2009, again finalist of the Main Event (5th) and who had already won a new bracelet this year in Event 3. It was his 9th final table in 35 WSOP cashes Cada still holds the title of the youngest winner in the history of the Main Event at 21 years. His WSOP winnings exceed $13 million Cada clinched the tournament in style against his opponent in the biggest pot of the night: the Michigan player paid a Bansai 4-bet with T ♥ T ♦ against 9 ♦ 8 ♦ for the Indian. Magic flop: 9 ♠ 5 ♥ 2 ♦ ... T ♠ T ♣ for runner-runner quads! Event 74 - $10,000 Big Blind Antes No-Limit Hold'em 6-Handed Championship 355 entrants (54 paid) - Prize Pool $3,337,000 Winner: Shaun Deeb (32 years old, US) - $814,179 beat Paul Volpe (United States) - $503,196 Notable players: 3. Romain Lewis (France) - $325,842 9. Mike Watson (Canada) - $54,831 11. Sam Greenwood (Canada) - $41,721 17. Anthony Zinno (USA) ) - $32,700 20. Dominik Nitsche (Germany) - $26,424 32- Loni Harwood (USA) - $18,982 34- Michael Gathy (Belgium) - $18,982 38- Michael Mizrachi (USA) - $16,911 39. Martin Jacobson (Sweden) - $16,911 41. Rainer Kempe (Germany) - $16,911 42. Ryan Riess (USA) - $16,911 In short: 4th WSOP bracelet for Shaun Deeb and his 2nd this summer. Deeb is the first double bracelet winner of 2018. If there had not been a double winner this year it would have been a first since 1999. Event 63 - $3,200 WSOP Poker Online No-Limit Hold'em High Roller 480 players (63 paid) - Prize Pool $1,459,200 Winner: Chance Kornuth (32 years old, US) - $341,599 beats David Goodman (United States) - $212,022 Notable players: 4. Noah Bronstein (USA) - $99,809 7. Justin Liberto (USA) - $37,356 16. John Hennigan (USA) - $11,090 18. Jason Koon (USA) - $11,090 19. Mohsin Charania (USA) ) - $9,339 21. Giuseppe Pantaleo (Germany) - $9,339 24. Chris Moorman (England) - $9,339 25. Ryan D'Angelo (USA) - $9,339 27. Jim Collopy (USA) - $9,339 29. Jeff Gross (USA) - $8,026 30. Eric Baldwin (USA) - $ 8,026 In short: 2nd WSOP bracelet for Chance Kornuth after his first in 2010 in a $5000 PLO tournament. Becomes second player to win a WSOP bracelet live and another online after Nipun Java who had made this double last year. The tournament attracted 356 players who took 124 rebuys. It was the last of four online tournaments in the program this year. The final table was reached in 9 hours of play Event 62 - $888 Crazy Eights No-Limit Hold'em 8,598 players (1218 Paid) - Prize Pool $ 6,871,521 Winner: Galen Hall (32 years old, US) - $888,888 beat Eduards Kudrjavcevs (Latvia) - $ 476,888 First bracelet for Galen Hall, high-profile poker player well known on the circuit (and notable winner of the PCA in 2011). Plays high stakes only part-time, now a hedge fund manager. Second WSOP final table in 17 cash. He finished 9th in a NLHE tournament in 2012. His WSOP earnings now exceed $1 million 8598 entries against 8120 last year for this tournament with unlimited re-entries, so this is a new record. Event 60 - $10,000 Pot-Limit Omaha Hi-Lo Championship (Photo: WSOP) 237 entrants (36 paid) - Prize Pool $ 2,227,800 Winner: Phil Galfond (33 years old, US) - $567,788 beat Michael McKenna (USA) - $350,922 Notable players: 7. David 'ODB' Baker (USA) - $65,579 12. Brandon Shack-Harris (USA) - $31,334 13. Chris Ferguson (USA) - $25,695 19. Cliff Josephy (USA) - $18,631 22. Eli Elezra (USA) - $18,631 32. Ryan Laplante (USA) - $16,494 35. Nick Schulman (USA) - $15,000 In short 3rd WSOP bracelet for Phil Galfond after 2008 (in PLO rebuy) and 2015 (in 2-7). Surprise victory for Galfond who had hardly played poker since last summer, and had little real experience in Pot-Limit Omaha Hi-Lo It was his 7th final table in 20 paid places. His World Series winnings now amount to some $2.8 million Event 58 - $5,000 No-Limit Hold'em 6-Handed (Photo: WSOP) 621 entrants (94 paid) - Prize Pool $2,887,650 Winner: Jean-Robert Bellande (47 years old, US) - $616,302 beat Dean Lyall (Scotland) - $380,895 Notable players: 9. Sergio Aido (Spain) - $45,764 19. Greg Merson (USA) - $21,018 20. Martin Finger (Germany) - $21,018 25. Sylvain Loosli (France) - $16,958 28. Andre Akkari (Brazil) - $ 16,958 33- Adrien Allain (France) - $ 14,004 In short: First long-awaited bracelet for the famous pro Jean-Robert Bellande, for his 24th WSOP cash. It was his third final table. He finished 2nd in the previous two including the prestigious Players Championship in 2015 One of those defeats came after a heads-up 19-to-1 advantage! His WSOP earnings now exceed $2.2 million Event 57 - $1,000 Ladies No-Limit Hold'em Championship 696 entrants (105 paid) - Prize Pool $626,400 Winner: Jessica Dawley (35 years old us) - $130,230 beat Jill Pike (United States) - $80,444 Notable players: 28. Kristy Arnett (USA) - $2,99131. Gaëlle Baumann (France) - $2,99134. Natasha Barbour-Mercier (USA) - $2,99141. Lacey Jones (USA) - $2,55147. Cyndy Violette (USA) - $2,21970- Melanie Weisner (USA) - $1,782 In short: Jessica Dawley served in the Armed Forces (National Air Guard) before becoming a poker pro."The last 10 years have been a lot of grind, and I'm very happy with this result, but I do not have the words and I have not realized it yet." Event 56 - $10,000 Razz Championship (Photo: WSOP) 119 entrants (18 paid) - Prize Pool $ 1,118,600 Winner: Calvin Anderson (30 years old us) - $309,220 beat Frank Kassela (United States) - $191,111 Notable Players: 3- Julien Martini (France) - $134,587 4- Mike Leah (Canada) - $96,744 5. Jerry Wong (USA) - $71,014 7. John Hennigan (USA) ) - $40,817 8. Dzmitry Urbanovich (Poland) - $31,992 9. Allen Kessler (USA) - $25,654 10. Ismael Bojang (Germany) - $25,654 11. Paul Volpe (USA) - $21,059 12. Eric Rodawig (USA) - $21,059 13. Ted Forrest (USA) - $17,706 14. Per Hildebrand (Sweden) - $17,706 15. Cary Katz (USA) - $15,256 16- James Obst (Australia) - $ 15,256 17- Scott Seiver (USA) - $ 15,256 In short: 2nd WSOP bracelet for Calvin Anderson after a first in 2004 in Stud Hi-Lo. His WSOP win now exceeds $1.3m in 37 cashes including 9 final tables. He best score was 2nd place in the 2016 Little One for One Drop. Defeated in heads-up, 50-year-old Frank Kassela was hoping to win his fourth bracelet after two in 2010 and one last year Event 52 - $10,000 Limit Hold'em Championship 114 entrants (18 paid) - Prize Pool $1,071,600 Winner: Scott Seiver (33 years old, US) - $296,222 beat Matt Szymaszek (United States) - $183,081 Notable players: 3. Anthony Zinno (USA) - $129,186 5. Matt Glantz (USA) - $68,352 10. Benny Glaser (England) - $20,253 11. Nick Schulman (USA) - $20,253 12- Maria Ho (USA) ) - $20,253 14. Brock Parker (USA) - $17,000 16- John Hennigan (USA) - $14,615 In short: 2nd WSOP bracelet for Scott Seiver, after a first won in 2008.His live tournament winnings are now flirting with $23.5 million (including $ 4.6 million for the WSOP) Event 42 - $25,000 Omaha Pot-Limit 8-Handed High Roller 230 entrants (35 paid) - Prize Pool $ 5,462,500 Winner: Shaun Deeb (32 years old, US) - $1,402,683 beat Ben Yu (United States) - $866,924 Notable players: 3. Scotty Nguyen (USA) - $592,875 5. Jason Koon (USA) - $295,606 7. David Benyamine (France) - $161,020 12. Jason Mercier (USA) - $77,107 14. Martin Kozlov (Australia) ) - $63,350 15. Robert Mizrachi (USA) - $53,391 25. Mike Leah (Canada) - $41,049 29. Tom Marchese (USA) - $41,049 32. Paul Volpe (USA) - $41,049 In short: 3rd WSOP bracelet for Shaun Deeb after wins in 2015 and 2016 With this $1.4 million (his personal best), his World Series cashes now exceed $3.3 million over 56 cashes including 10 final tables. Fun fact: the two men had already faced heads-up of a WSOP tournament in 2017 (Limit 2-7 TD at $ 10,000). But this time it was Yu who had imposed. 3rd-place Scotty Nguyen was not far from winning his 6th bracelet. It's the third biggest win of his career Event 33 - $50,000 Poker Players Championship 87 entrants (14 paid) - Prize Pool $ 4,176,000 Winner: Michael Mizrachi (37 years old, US) - $1,239,126 beat John Hennigan (United States) - $765,837 Notable players: 3. Dan Smith (USA) - $521,782 4. Mike Leah (Canada) - $364,197 5. Benny Glaser (England) - $260,578 6. Aaron Katz (USA) - $191,234 7. Greg Mueller (Canada) ) - $144,049 8. Brian Rast (USA) - $144,049 9. Phil Ivey (USA) - $111,447 10. Shaun Deeb (USA) - $111,447 12. Jean-Robert Bellande (USA) - $88,627 In short: "The Grinder" wins his 4th WSOP bracelet including 3 in this prestigious $50,000 Players Championship (after 2010 and 2012)! With 4 bracelets won at the Series, he matches his brother Robert. It was his 15th final table and 62nd cash. His WSOP earnings now exceed $9 million and in his career he is approaching $17 million. Only he and Brian Rast have won this tournament more than once Event 31 - $1,500 Seven Card Stud (Photo: WSOP) 310 players (47 paid) - Prize Pool $ 418,500 Winner: Steve Albini (55 years old, US) - $105,629 beat Jeff Lisandro (Australia) - $65,282 Notable players: 3. Katherine Fleck (USA) - $43,765 4. Chris Ferguson (USA) - $29,999 11. Bertrand 'ElkY' Grospellier (France) - $5,110 17. Julien Martini (France) - $2,982 28. Mark Radoja (Canada) - $2,635 37. Dzmitry Urbanovich (Poland) - $2,398 38. David Levi (USA) - $2,398 In short: First WSOP bracelet for Steve Albini, famous and legendary rock producer He owns a recording studio in Chicago and is a member of Shellac His best result was a 12th place out of 4,407 in the 2013 Seniors Event for $40,694. To win he had to get rid of four previous winners in the final including Chris Ferguson and Jeff Lisandro Albini credits several players and friends with whom he plays with in Chicago and who helped him understand poker including Brandon Shack-Harris and Eric Rodawig. Event 23 - $10,000 No-Limit 2-7 Draw Lowball Championship (Photo: WSOP) 95 entrants (15 paid) - Prizepool $ 893,000 Winner: Brian Rast (36 years old, US) - $259,670 beat Mike Wattel (United States) - $160,489 Notable players: 3. Dario Sammartino (Italy) - $114,023 6. Doyle Brunson (USA) - $43,963 7. John Hennigan (USA) - $32,796 8. Farzad Bonyadi (USA) - $24,775 10. Todd Brunson (USA) ) - $18,955 11. Galen Hall (USA) - $18,955 13. Robert Mizrachi (USA) - $14,691 14. Paul Volpe (USA) - $14,691 In short: 4th WSOP bracelet for Brian Rast. He had two in 2011 and one in 2016. 2 of these victories were in the prestigious $50k Players Championship His live tournament winnings now exceed $21 million (including nearly $6m at the WSOP). Historic moment: it was the very last WSOP tournament in which the legend Doyle Brunson participated! Doyle completed his last World Series tournament in 6th place, eliminated by James Alexander Event 16 - $10,000 No-Limit Heads-Up Championship (Photo: WSOP) 114 entrants (8 paid) - Prize Pool $ 1,071,600 Winner: Justin Bonomo (32 years old, US) - $185,965 beats Jason McConnon (England) - $114,933 In short: 2nd WSOP bracelet for Justin Bonomo after a first in 2014. All in he has 18 final tables and 48 cashes. Bonomo won 7 matches. He defeated David Peters (his toughest opponent), David Laka, Jake Schindler, Niall Farrell, Mark McGovern, Martijn Gerrits and Jason McConnon. Bonomo won the 2018 Super High Roller Bowl for $5 million a week before With the win Bonomo now exceeds $4 million in World Series winnings. Event 9 - $10,000 Omaha Hi-Lo Championship (Photo: WSOP) 169 entrants (26 paid) - Prize Pool $1,588,000 Winner: Paul Volpe (36 years old, US) - $417,921 beat Eli Elezra (United States) - $258,297 Notable players: 5. Viacheslav Zhukov (Russia) - $94,370 7. Robert Mizrachi (USA) - $52,866 9. Per Hildebrand (Sweden) - $31,977 11. Mike Matusow (USA) - $25,619 17. Felipe Ramos (Brazil) - $17,488 18. Chris Bjorin (Sweden) - $17,488 24. Anthony Zinno (USA) - $14,912 26. Dan Shak (USA) - $14,912 In short: 3rd WSOP bracelet for Paul Volpe after wins in 2014 and 2016. It was his 9th final table in 43 cashes. Other bracelets holders in the final: Elezra (3), Zhukov (2), R.Mizrachi (4) Event 5 - $100,000 No-Limit Hold'em High Roller (Photo: WSOP) 105 entrants (16 paid) - Prize Pool $ 10,185,000 Winner: Nick Petrangelo (31 years old, US) - $2,910,227 beat Elio Fox (United States) - $1,798,658 Notable players: 5. Bryn Kenney (USA) - $646,927 6. Stephen Chidwick (England) - $484,551 7. Jason Koon (USA) - $372,894 8. Adrian Mateos (Spain) - $295,066 9. Fedor Holz (Germany) ) - $240,265 11. Christoph Vogelsang (Germany) - $201,494 12. Thomas Muehloecker (Germany) - $201,494 14. Jason Mercier (USA) - $174,190 15. Paul Volpe (USA) - $155,378 In short: 2nd WSOP bracelet for Nick Petrangelo This is his second win in 4 final tables (for 21 cashes) Petrangelo was chip leader at the end of Days 2 and 3 6 German players among the 16 paid players Event 3 - $3,000 No-Limit Hold'em Shootout (Photo: WSOP) 363 entrants (50 paid) - Prize Pool $ 980 $ 100 Winner: Joe Cada (30 years old,us ) - $226,218 beat Samuel Phillips (USA) - $139,804 Notable players: 3. Joe McKeehen (USA) - $101,766 In short: 3rd WSOP bracelet for the 2009 WSOP World Champion (winner of the Main Event). Cada won another bracelet in 2014. This new victory puts him over $10 million in World Series cashes This is his third win in 7 final tables (and 30 cashes). In the final table he will have found another previous world champion (in 2015), Joe McKeehen Event 2 - $10,000 No-Limit Hold'em Super Turbo Bounty (Photo: WSOP) 243 entrants (37 paid) - Prize Pool $ 2,284,200 Winner: Elio Fox (32 years old, US) - $393,693 beat Adam Adler (United States) - $243,323 Notable players: 3. Paul Volpe (USA) - $169,195 9. Joe Cada (USA) - $27,582 10. Bryn Kenney (USA) - $21,734 16. John Racener (USA) - $14,300 17. Talal Shakerchi (England) ) - $14,300 19. Kenny Hallaert (Belgium) - $11,950 23. Antoine Saout (France) - $11,950 26. Nam Le (USA) - $11,950 In short: 2nd WSOP bracelet for Elio Fox, who was the big winner of the Main Event of the WSOP Europe in 2011 in Cannes Second victory in two final tables (in 12 total cashes) Fox started the heads-up with a disadvantage of 9 to 1 It was the first super turbo bounty tournament in WSOP history Visit

Live, Online Satellites Hitting Full Speed for 2018 Battle of Malta
The Battle of Malta 2018 is still a few months away but seats are already being filled at a blistering pace.Not only are package sales booming, live satellite winners have begun to secure their heavily discounted seats in the low buy-in event of the year. At least 6 happy satellite winners secured their spot in the €1m Battle of Malta Main Event at the recent European Poker Series (EPS) stop at Casino Cirsa Valencia in Spain and will head to Malta in October to reap their rewards. Win a Seat Live Across Europe! With the successful sale of the Battle of Malta brand to the Eden Leisure Group last year, hopeful BoM attendees can now win their seat across several casinos in the Baltics, the Iberian Peninsula, Italy and beyond. Most live Battle of Malta satellites that offer a seat into the event commonly follow the same structure: One-evening tournament €55 buy-in 1 in 10 chance to win a Main Event seat Casinos that give away complete packages including hotel and travel costs change the conditions correspondingly. Live Qualifiers in Madrid, Bulgaria Players from the Iberian Peninsula were comparatively scarce at the BOM last year but that’s going to change. On top of the Valencia qualifiers the EPS is giving away at least 4 more BOM tickets at their next big event at the Casino Madrid in July (18-29). One ticket will be given to the overall chipleader after each Day 1 and another 3 tickets will go to the otherwise unhappiest players of a tournament – the bubble boy and the two players busting before him. Another event to watch if you want to qualify live for the BOM is the MPNPT at the Sunny Beach Casino on the banks of the Black Sea in Bulgaria. It takes place July 5-8 and features a €550 main event just like the BOM. Both the EPS and the MPNPT will have their own side events at the BOM 2018 so make sure to check the 2018 Battle of Malta schedule for details. Online Satellites Begin July 3 on MPN! Online satellites will again be available for the Battle with full €1,500 packages available to be won starting July 3. Each package includes: €550 entry into €1m Battle of Malta Main Event €150 entry into MPNPT Battle Side Event on Monday 29th October. 5-nights accommodation at 4-star Holiday Inn Express (or similar) for you and a guest including breakfast (Check-in Oct. 26, check-out Oct. 31) Players Welcome Party on Friday 26th October @ Casino Malta VIP area in Battle of Malta party on Sunday 28th October with a limited free bar Access to all other Battle of Malta player parties Free dinner for all players in the Main Event MPNPT @ Battle of Malta last longer with 3 x €1,500 MPNPT packages on offer to the three players who last longest in Battle of Malta main event (Platinum sponsor qualifiers only) VIP chill out room next to the main tournament hall open 27th Oct – 31st October (Platinum sponsor qualifiers only) €200 towards your travel and expenses Daily online satellites will run on all MPN network sites (including Guts Poker, Redbet Poker, Betsson, Nordic Bet, Betsafe Poker and more) and start at as little as €0.55! Buy in levels run at €2.20, €3.30, €5.50, €11, €55, €135 and €200. Be sure to check the full satellite schedule at any participating MPN site. Unlimited Re-Entries, More Play For the first time in its history the Battle of Malta Main Event will guarantee €1,000,000 paid out to the players lucky enough to make the money. The top few players will all walk away with six-figure payouts - a phenomenal return for a €550 buy-in.  To further your chances of getting to that end game, for the first time the BOM main event will also allow unlimited re-entries during Day 1 play. Players will also now be allowed to forfeit their chips at the end of Day 1 try again with a fresh, full stack the next day as long as late registration is open. The original 25/50 blind level has also been cut from the new tournament structure. The first level is now 100/100. This will give everybody a bit more play as there are only very few players that bust in these early levels. Removing the very low levels at the beginning of the tournament also gives the players a little more room and play towards the end of Day 1. This day will end, by the way, when the field is down to 15% -- meaning we’ll end the day close to the bubble. Check out the full structure of the main and side events here. Big Blind Ante Also for the first time the BOM will be played with a big blind ante instead of the running ante that used to be the norm in tournaments. The big blind ante has become rather popular in live tournaments lately and the Battle of Malta has always been a progressive tournament. Live Coverage, Live Stream Return! As previous Battle of Malta attendees are used to the PokerListings team will be on location to bring you all the action from the tables and everything you need to know beyond the felt to make sure your trip is a memorable one. A full live stream will also be in place again starting on Day 1 and we'll release more details about the stream as we get closer! Good luck in your qualifying and we'll see you October 25-30 at Casino Malta!Visit

Schedule, Structures Released for $1m 2018 Battle of Malta!
Each year of its existence the Battle of Malta has shattered its record for both entries and prize pool set the year before.Expect the same (and more) for 2018. We're still six months out from the shuffle up and deal for the 2018 Battle of Malta but it's already shaping up to smash its all-time records for entries and buy-ins yet again - the 7th consecutive time that would happen. Pre-sales of all-inclusive packages have boomed and the 2018 BoM is on track to hit enormous heights. And it now has the space to do it in. New Guarantee, New Space, New Dates! If you're not up to speed on the latest developments for the 2018 Battle of Malta, here's a quick run-through: €1m Guarantee! The 2018 BoM Main Event has doubled its guarantee to a full €1 million! Last year's main event prize pool topped out at over €1m and players can likely expect the same to hold true. Unlimited rebuys are also now on the table to further boost the prize pool. Massive New Space! With the sale of the BoM brand to Eden Leisure Group (ELG) the location will shift to the massive new Casino Malta and Hotel InterContinental (Malta’s largest 5-star hotel). The 3000m2 conference center can hold over 140 tables and 1,000 players every day! With smoother registration and more room to breathe expect the experience of Europe's best low buy-in destination poker festival to get even better. New Dates! The 2018 Battle of Malta Festival will now take place Oct. 25-30 - a week before its usual dates. A €55+5 Super Satellite runs the night before (Oct. 24) at 6 pm for anyone looking for a last-minute entry. Nine Events, Massive Potential! With the boosted guarantee and massive new space the potential for the 2018 BoM Festival to hit unthinkable highs is, well, high. Package pre-sales are already at a record high and no slow down appears in sight with a broader new casino network to draw on and live satellites running across the continent already. While the €1 million guarantee Main Event is the centerpiece 2018 BoM attendees will have at least 9 events to partake in. The full 2018 Battle of Malta schedule has now been released here but here's a quick overview of the events and dates: So much space! Thursday, October 25th Battle of Malta Main Event Day 1a - Buy-in €550 Friday, October 26th Battle of Malta Main Event Day 1b  - Buy-in €550 NLH Bounty - Buy-in €100+100+20 Saturday, October 27th Battle of Malta Main Event Day 1c - Buy-in €550 BoM Ladies Event - Buy-in €100+10 PLO Double Chance - Buy-in €150+15 Sunday, October 28th BOM Main Event Day 2 NLH Siege Of Malta Day 1 - Buy-in €220+25 NLH BoM High Roller Day 1 - Buy-in €1200+120 NLH Deep Stack Day 1 - Buy-in €300+30 Monday, October 29th BoM Main Event Day 3 NLH Siege of Malta Day 2 NLH BoM High Roller DAY 2  NLH Deep Stack Day 2 NLH Battle Turbo Buy-in €200+20 TBD Side Event Buy-in €130+20 Tuesday, October 30th BoM High Roller Final Table Siege of Malta Final Table BoM Main Event Final Table For a full rundown of the start times, starting stacks, level times, entry limits and satellites during the festival check the full 2018 Battle of Malta Calendar. 2018 Battle of Malta Tournament Structures See the full structures for the 2018 Battle of Malta Main Event and side events here. A quick overview: Battle of Malta Main Event Starting Stack: 25k Day 1 Level Time: 40 mins Day 2 (& Onward) Level Times: 60 mins Re-Entry: Unlimited Additional Terms & Conditions: Tournament played with big blind ante. BB will be posted prior to the ante in all-in situations Day 1s end w/ 15% of the field remaining (all remaining players ITM) Player can forfeit his or her stack at the end of Day 1a or 1b but must announce before sealing chips in bag Day 2 will play 8 levels with no dinner break Day 3 will play down to the Final Table Levels will be 45 min when down to 6 players; 30 min when down to 3 players Battle of Malta Side Events See the full list of individual Side Event starting stacks, level times and structures on the Schedule page and the Structures page. Are You Ready for Battle? Early bird ackages for the 2018 Battle of Malta are already available via the Battle of Malta website. Learn more about the hotel, casino and BoM venue there.  Online satellites for 2018 BoM packages begin soon! Check our Battle of Malta Facebook page for updates and to ask any questions! Check the video to see the gigantic new space for BoM 2018! Visit

Battle of Malta Back in 2018 w/ 1,000,000 GTD Main Event!
More money, new ownership, new location, new dates.Europe’s best low buy-in live poker tournament is back and it's bigger and better than ever before. The Battle of Malta – awarded “Best Low Buy-in Tournament in Europe” in 2015 – will return in 2018 for its seventh edition. What’s New in 2018? More Money! For the first time the Battle of Malta main event will have a €1,000,000 guaranteed prize pool of! That’s twice the prize pool it used to have! New Ownership – PokerListings has sold the Battle of Malta to the Eden Leisure Group (ELG). The ELG is the owner of the new Casino Malta, the Hotel InterContinental (Malta’s largest 5-star hotel), the Holiday Inn Express and the InterContinental Arena Conference Centre. With its 3000m2 conference area formerly known as the Bay Arena, the Battle of Malta will now have room to grow even further. New Dates – The Battle of Malta will take place October 25-30. Despite the double in guarantee the buy-in remains at €550 but for the first time unlimited rebuys will be available, which will result in an even bigger prize pool. There will also be a range of side events which are still to be announced. New Location – The next Battle of Malta will take place in the middle of Malta’s entertainment centre in St. Julian’s. The InterContinental Conference Centre features a main area with enough room for over 140 tables, giving it a potential player field of more than 1,000 players every day! ELG and OEG Purchase Battle of Malta Over its six-year existence the BOM has grown every time. Starting out as a 350-player weekend event in 2012 with €150,000 guaranteed it has developed into a massive, week-long poker festival with nine different events. Nadav Lipszyc, a farmer from Israel, won the main event last year and cashed for €200,000 after beating out more than 2,000 entries. PokerListings decided to sell the Battle of Malta to the Eden Leisure Group and the Olympic Entertainment Group (OEG) to give it the chance to grow even further. Not only is the ELG one of the biggest players in the hotel and casino industry in Malta, the OEG is also the owner of more than 100 gaming places in seven different countries. This will give players all over Europe the chance to play live satellites in a lot of different casinos across Italy, the Baltics and other countries. The OEG employs more than 3000 people and generated more than €215 million in revenue last year. The new home of the BOM. Elevating BoM to the Next Level Casino Malta owner Kevin De Cesare said, “Being the owner of the hotel, casino and event organization puts us in a unique position to be able to elevate this tournament to the next level. "Our two hotels provide the largest number of rooms situated around a Casino in Malta, our Arena can easily take some 140 poker tables all on one level and our Casino is significantly larger than any other casinos in Malta.” Moving the event to new and larger premises will ensure that the BOM can continue to grow in the years to come and establish Malta as the hottest poker location in Europe for small and mid-stakes players. PokerListings will accompany the new Battle of Malta and provide you with news about the schedule and additional events as soon as possible. About the Battle of Malta The inaugural Battle of Malta took place in 2012 had a single main event with a guarantee of €150,000. It attracted 347 players. Over the years, the main event has grown into the largest standalone tournament in Europe with a buy-in of under $2,000. In 2017 the winner took home €50,000 more than the original guarantee. The guarantee had been raised up to €500,000 and will reach €1,000,000 for the first time in 2018. While there was just one side event in 2012 (the Siege of Malta Second Chance) there were nine events in 2017 including a Ladies event, a High Roller event, a PLO event and several Hold’em tournaments. The Battle of Malta also features daily parties, free casino buffets for the players and, most of all, the chance to escape the early days of winter in Europe and spend them on a sunny island in the Mediterranean while simultaneously having the chance to win life-changing money playing cards.Visit

120,000 GTD for 888poker Live London Kick Off at Aspers
With big events like the WPT Deepstacks Berlin, the PCA and the Aussie Millions in progress, it already looks like an amazing poker year is in store for 2018.When the first week of February rolls around 888poker joins the fray with its first London Poker Festival at the Aspers Casino. It’s a 4-day event with £120,000 guaranteed and a £440 Main Event buy-in. If you’re a low- or mid-stakes player who likes professionally run tournaments with great structures, set your eyes on East London right now. 888poker Live Kick Off By the Numbers The dates for the first event of 2018 in 888poker’s home casino are February 8-11. Aspers place to be. There will be four Day 1 flights across three days and one long final day to determine the winner. You’re free to choose your favorite flight and play either in the afternoon or in the evening but you’ll have to invest the £440 buy-in to be eligible to play (Well, actually, you don’t. More on that below). The prize pool for the 888poker Live Kick Off in London will be at least £120,000 so we’ll either see a field of over 300 players or an overlay – both heart-warming thoughts if you’re looking at spending February in London. 888poker Live Kick Off Overview Flight/Day Date Time Buy-in £/€/$ Re-Entries 1A Feb 8 6 PM 440/500/600 2 1B Feb 9 6 PM 440/500/600 2 1C Feb 10 2 PM 440/500/600 2 1D Feb 10 7 PM 440/500/600 2 2 Feb 11 1 PM - - All times are local time. The starting chip stack will be 25,000 chips and level times will be 30/40 min. 888poker guarantee £120,000/€135,000/$160,000 to be paid out to the players. Be there to claim your share. Qualify Online for Just $12! If you like to play 888poker events you know there are always ways to make it into the main events via online satellites. Get on the Fortune Trail, too. There are two different weekly direct satellites for the 888poker Live Kick Off – a $12 Seat Only and a $30 Full Prize Package satellite. The $12 Seat Only satellite runs on Wednesdays at 6:25 PM GMT. Winners will get a seat to the 4-day Kick Off event worth €500. The $30 Full Package satellite runs on Sundays at 6:05 PM GMT and the winner receive the ticket plus $300 for hotel costs and another $300 for travel expenses. That brings the value of that prize up to $1,200. As always you can use the 888poker steps system to get into the direct satellites without paying their buy-ins. The steps tournaments run 24/7 and you can choose any of the 1c, 10c, $1 or $5 buy-ins. Move up the levels or start wherever you feel comfortable. XL Blizzard Incoming! While you’re at it, note that you can also use the tickets you win in steps satellites to play in the inaugural XL Blizzard online series. It runs from January 18-28 and features 34 poker events with buy-ins from $8.80 to $2,100. The main event guarantees $1,000,000! 888poker is also running a freeroll promotion called The Fortune Trail. Just open the lobby and you’ll get invited to spin the lucky wheel. If you don’t have an 888poker account yet, we’ll help you get started with an $888 sign-up bonus.Visit

Jacobson Wins Whale, Volcano in 1st Week on 888poker
Champions gonna champion.Less than a month after the 2014 World Series of Poker Champion was signed by 888poker, he’s already causing a stir. The ink on his contract is barely dry but Martin Jacobson has already won his new sponsor’s most prestigious weekly event. Martin Jacobson Takes Down Whale Last Sunday the signature 888poker Sunday Whale was played as a special $1,050 buy-in edition with a guaranteed prize pool of $150,000. A total of 159 players including re-entries made for a $159,000 prize pool that was paid out to the top 15 players. Once a champ, always a champ. In a tournament that had 888 regs like Kannwas, Jan Graftekkel Arends, Christopher NigDawg Brammer, Fabrizio DrMikee Gonzalez and Jerry PerryMejsen Ödeen in the top 25, Jacobson once more proved his superiority. The tournament took eight and a half hours and Jacobson cashed for the top prize of $39,750. Astonishingly, this was already his second win in an MTT on 888poker since he signed his new sponsorship deal. On January 2 Jacobson won the $565 Volcano, another high-level Sunday major event on 888poker. That night Jacobson added $18k to his new online poker account. That’s two wins out of just six tournaments the Swedish world champion has played as an 888 pro. On a side note Jacobson was also the bubble boy of the New Year’s Special Whale on January 1 and just missed the money of the Mega Deep New Year’s Special on the same night. It seems like the relationship between Jacobson and 888poker has already turned out to be a win-win-situation. Whale $150k Guaranteed FT Results 1 Mjacobson888 $39,750 2 f0rmEiTseGal $27,030 3 lasochobi $20,670 4 farm_jim $14,707.50 5 PaDiLhA10 $10,335 6 cyrcyn27 $8347.50 7 B.Mitchell $6757.50 8 DosPoochies $5565 9 SalsaFiesta $4372.50 Ylitalo Wins Mega Deep for $25k Ylitalo joins in the fun. It was a weekend of Swedish success on 888poker. While Jacobson was taking down the “Whale” his countryman and former EPT London winner Robin Ylitalo was busy cruising through the $215 Special Edition Mega Deep. With 643 entries this was a much larger tournament to get through and consequently it took three hours longer than the Whale. Ylitalo eventually prevailed and earned $24,434 for his efforts. Niklas tutten7 Arendt, another Swedish player, also final-tabled this event to add to the feeling of Swedish dominance. $215 SE Mega Deep FT Results 1 Inho $24,434 2 Rickpereira7 $18,004 3 tikkapekka $13,503 4 GramNaKartke $9645 5 lasochobi $6430 6 dmg34 $4501 7 tutten7 $3215 8 ThalesLeite $2572 9 Anao19 $2096 It's been a good weekend for the Swedes but take note of Argentinian player lasochobi, who made it to the final table of both these events and finished in 3rd and 5th place! 888poker in January The Sunday Majors are not the only tournaments to go for on 888poker. Right now they’re preparing the first edition of the XL Blizzard, a 34-event series starting on January 18 with a wide range of buy-ins. Also, join the Fortune Trail. Just open your lobby and spin the Wheel. You''ll win freeroll tickets and much more. Create your own 888poker account within minutes. Download the software through PokerListings and start playing with an $888 bonus!Visit

WSOP Champion Martin Jacobson Signs with Team 888Poker
2018 has arrived and 888poker has apparently made the resolution to keep firing on all cylinders.Just weeks after signing rising Brazilian star Vivian Saliba – winner of the last 888poker Ladies Event in London – they’ve now added one of the biggest names in poker to the 888 pro roster. 2014 World Series of Poker champion Martin Jacobson is now a member of Team 888poker and together they have big plans to continue 'taking back the game' for the amateur player. Jacobson an All-Time Swedish Great Jacobson didn’t emerge on the poker scene when he made the final table of the WSOP main event like so many champions before him. Seasoned pro even before the big show. He was already an accomplished pro at the time with achievements under his belt like: 6th place in the $111,111 Big One for One Drop 10th place in the PCA Main Event Runner-up finish at the WPT Venice Final tables at EPTs in Hungary, Portugal, France and Germany His $10 million win in Las Vegas - the second highest prize money ever paid out in the WSOP main event and the only year the WSOP put a guarantee on the winner’s prize money - propelled Jacobson to the top of the all-time Swedish money list. But in fact he would have gotten there as well by now without it - that’s how big his lead in the national rankings is. Helping People Realize Their Dreams This comfortable position has enabled Jacobson to focus on things away from the poker table, too. He donated a quarter of a million dollars to the REG charity – of which he had become a member a few months prior – even before he sat down at the final table of the WSOP Main Event. He’s been even more active in charitable donations since. Helping others is at the top of Jacobson’s list of life hacks. “I want to help people realize their dream of starting from the bottom and eventually becoming a World Champion,” says Jacobson. “I believe that everyone who has accomplished great things in poker has an amazing story behind them because we all have a long journey behind us. From the moment we learnt the rules of the game until we start lifting trophies, there are no shortcuts.”  The dream is real. Get an $888 Sign-Up Bonus! Jacobson joins a growing team made up of absolute top earners of the game like Chris Moorman and Dominik Nitsche, sports stars like Denilson, female aces Saliba, Sofia Lövgren and Kara Scott and promoters of the world’s fastest growing poker market – Brazil – like Nicolau Villa-Lobos and Bruno Kawauti. There are also now two former November Niners as one of Jacobson’s new team mates is Bruno 'Foster' Politano, who finished in 8th place in 2014, sitting right across from Jacobson. You always meet twice, they say. You can meet any of the 888poker pros at the tables but you need your own 888poker account. If you want to know how to open a poker account at 888poker, click through to our review page and we’ll show you how easy it’s done alongside an $888 sign-up bonus. Check back here for more about 888's new Fortune Trail promotion, the Lick-off in London and the latest edition of the Poker Brief.Visit

888poker Jackpotland Spins Until Dec. 31; Win $100k a Day!
Free spins. Free tournaments. Prizes with every spin.If you've yet to have a go at 888poker's Jackpotland Wheel of Fortune, it's not too late. You've still got to the end of the year to take advantage of free spins and tournament tickets and, if you're lucky, reel in up to $100,000 in cash. In fact three free tickets are waiting for you right now. $100k Every Day! First things first: If you already have an account at 888poker you've likely taken advantage of your free spins. If you haven't, they're just a few minutes away. You'll also be eligible for our $888 sign-up bonus and get free spins on the Jackpotland wheel.Create a new account at 888poker via our review page and three tickets to play in the Jackpotland daily freerolls (worth $3k and $5k). Each spin is a winner and can be either a free tourney ticket, casino perks or a cash prize.  Cash prizes run all the way up to $100,000 and that can be won every day. Use the promo code JACKPOT100 and deposit at least $10 when you create your account. Here are the daily tournament details: $3,000 Jackpotland Skills Tournament When: Every day at 19:05 and 22:05 GMT Runs: until December 24, 2017 $3,000 Jackpotland Lucky Tournament When: Every day at 10:05 and 15:05 GMT Runs: Until December 24/12/2017 $5,000 Jumbo Tournament When: Every Sunday at 21:05 GMT Runs: Until December 31, 2017 As you can see, you can play up to four times a day. Skills tournaments are Turbo MTT satellites with fast-rising blinds; Jackpotland Lucky tournaments are all-in fests where each player is all-in all the time.  To play in the weekly Sunday Jumbo you need to make the top 500 in a Skills or Lucky tournament and win your ticket on the Wheel of Fortune. Each time you make it to the top 500 players in any of the tournaments you'll win a spin on the Jackpotland Jackpot wheel where you can when more tickets, cash, sportsbetting credits, casino spins etc. More Tickets, More Ways to Win You can also win more tournament tickets by completing some easy challenges. Play in 5 or more BLAST tournaments with a minimum buy-in of $1. Play Tournaments or Sit & Gos with a total buy-in of $4 or more. Win 15 hands or more in cash games including SNAP, with minimum stakes of 2¢-5¢. Play 40 hands in Flopomania cash game with Antes of 5¢ or more You can win up to 4 tickets per day with one ticket per challenge. Get in on the holiday Jackpotland action by signing up for an 888poker account right here. This article is an advertorial.Visit

Liv Boeree: “Recreational Players are as Important as Pros"
Liv Boeree grew up in Kent, England and received a first-class degree in Astrophysics from the University of Manchester before she played poker.She made her first appearance in the Showdown in 2005 where she was coached by Phil Hellmuth and Dave "Devilfish" Ulliott. In 2010 Boeree won the EPT San Remo Main Event which at the time was the largest poker tournament ever played in Europe. She was then signed to Team PokerStars Pro and has been a banner member ever since. Liv Boeree, Most Inspiring Poker Player Her accomplishments on and off the felt are plentiful (European Poker Award for best female player three years in a row, first WSOP bracelet this summer, etc) but reached a new apex in 2017 when she was voted the Most Inspiring Player in our annual Spirit of Poker Awards. She’s easily one of the most popular players the game of poker has ever seen and the fact our voters selected her as MIP in a landslide only reinforces that notion.  PokerListings met up with Liv at the PSC in Prague this week to give her the award and get her feelings on things. PokerListings: Congratulations on winning the PokerListings Spirit of Poker Award in the main category “Most Inspiring Player of the Year”! Liv Boeree: Thank you! It really means a lot to me. PL: You’ve become very much a role model in the industry. Does this lift you up or put pressure on you? LB: It’s definitely an honor and I hope my role-model-ness also includes all my screw-ups. Also, it’s nice to feel some pressure. It keeps you motivated. PL: Contrary to many other awards, this one is not determined by a panel of professionals but by the “average Joe” and readers of PokerListings. Does that make a difference? LB: Absolutely. First of all, the recreational players are the majority and they are as important as the professionals. Their opinions matter and they’re often a little bit more broad-minded people. So, it’s a big compliment. PL: A large part of your popularity comes from what you do off the poker tables. What are your current projects with REG? LB: There’s a project right now that involves Dan Smith and the Crowley brothers (ed. note: Martin and Tom, who are highly successful players in Fantasy Sports). They’re donating over a million dollars and REG is supporting them. I’m not directly involved in it but I’m happy to promote the initiative. As for myself and 2018, I’m looking at a couple of book projects. I can’t say too much about them now but one of them is poker-related and the other one is very un-poker-related. Both projects have their merits and I haven’t decided which one to go for yet. PL: Do you have someone to ghost you? LB: No. I’ll do it myself, unless I really struggle. PL: There are quite a few awards in the poker industry. Do you feel the Hall of Fame is the most important one? LB: Quite frankly, it means nothing to me. Maybe it should but it was never something on my mind that one day I want to be in the Poker Hall of Fame. In my mind it’s pretty much an expression of that you were around in poker in the late 1990s or early 2000s. If you were, you’ll be in it. If not, you know… PL: But you would be the first female player from Europe to be inducted. LB: So? It feels like the Hall of Fame is a very American thing. It would be a cool idea in some ways but it’s just nothing that’s ever been on my radar. I do think that there should be just one Hall of Fame but there should be a bit more of an international touch to it. PL: Would you like to come to the Battle of Malta next year? LB: There’s always a chance but I can’t say for sure now. All I can say is always invite me. PL: Thank you, Liv Boeree! Watch the video below for Liv’s response to winning the PokerListings Spirit of Poker Award for Most Inspiring Player of the Year. Visit

Win a $30k Platinum Pass for $25k PokerStars Championship!
The two hottest topics at the ongoing PokerStars Championship in Prague this week?The return of the “old” PokerStars tournament brands and the introduction of a new high-roller event that will change high-roller events as we know them. Yes, PokerStars is bringing back the iconic European Poker Tour and its other regional brands. On top of that the new $25k Players No-Limit Hold'em Championship will be a pinnacle event for the poker "everyperson." EPT, APPT, LAPT are Back! It’s been called a “controversial subject," but it really wasn’t. Long live the EPT! When PokerStars announced the end of the EPT brand at what was called “the last EPT ever," we couldn’t find a single player who thought is was a good idea – at least not one who wasn’t wearing a PokerStars patch. Although it was understandable that the market leader in the world of poker was trying to find a more universal approach to live poker, the decision to eradicate the most powerful brand in poker outside the WSOP was met with skepticism. Exactly one year later things are going back to where they were. The European Poker Tour brand is back and so is the Latin American Poker Tour and the Asia-Pacific Poker Tour. All the stops haven’t been officially announced but Sochi, Monte Carlo, Barcelona and Prague will definitely be on the EPT schedule for 2018. The New PokerStars Players Championship The new “Players No Limit Hold’em Championship” is by far the biggest innovation of the week and PokerStars isn't holding back in promoting it - $9 million added, anyone? What to know about the new Players Championship: It's a $25,000 buy-in tournament played live for the first time at the PCA in January 2019! There will be $1,000,000 added for first place. There won’t be any rake But that’s not all. PokerStars will add another $8 million of value in hopes of making the inaugural PSPC a smashing success. 300 Platinum Prizes to Win! “Platinum Pass” is the title that’s been given to the prize packages that include the buy-in, hotel accommodation and travel expenses. Every Platinum Pass has a value of $30,000. Over the course of the coming 12 months more than 300 Platinum Passes will be given away. And as one of the main goals for the Players Championship is for it to be an event for all players, the majority of these passes will be given away at random. You can win a Platinum Pass by simply playing in online or live events as well as in cash games. Now and again a table will be singled out and one of the players will be given a Pass. There will also be Platinum Passes in some of the Stars Rewards Chests. Not all the Passes will be just handed out randomly, though. Winning a large online tournament – let’s say in the Micro Millions, the WCOOP, or the upcoming Winter Series, can get you a Platinum Pass. If you’re going to play live at one of the following events – the Italian Poker Open in Italy, the PSL in Macau, the PCA, or the PokerStars Festival in London - you might also be the lucky winner of a Platinum Pass. Fun begins in Bahamas! Note: There will not be any special satellites for the PSPC! 5 Platinum Passes at 2018 PCA The first two Platinum Passes have been given to the two players who simultaneously bubbled the PSC Prague Main Event. “We’ll carry on with giving five Passes away at the PCA," said PokerStars ambassador Daniel Negreanu to PokerListings. “Then we’ll do something for the WCOOP, for the SCOOP, for Deepstack events like $11 tournaments. It’s going to be a wide spectrum of people and it won’t be based just on winning.” “The Platinum Passes are giveaways; they’re free, there’s no money that you need to risk to get one. It’s based on participation, it's great value for everyone and it’s a tournament that nobody wants to miss.” You shouldn’t miss it either so get your own PokerStars account through PokerListings and start playing now!Visit

Win a $15,855 Package This Sunday for Blockbuster 2018 PCA!
The PokerStars Caribbean Adventure has always been more than just a poker festival.As the kickoff to the poker year for the past decade it’s been a celebration of the game, a celebration of hard-earned camaraderie among grinders (both live and online) and, truly, a celebration of the poker life. As PokerStars has revealed over the past few months the 2018 PCA will return with a bang this January -- and you still have a chance to be a part of it. Return to PCA of Old PokerStars has revamped the 2018 PCA festival with, among other things, a return to the original $10k buy-in for the Main Event. It also added a number of promotions to enable as many players as possible to make the trip to the Bahamas. As of this past weekend hundreds of players have already qualified online for the main event and this coming weekend will see the last chance for a lucky few to book their seats on a plane and in the Main. The main way is to grind through the final Main Event direct satellite. This is a $530 NLHE tournament that will run on December 17 at 2:35 PM ET/8:35 PM CET. Depending on the number of buy-ins a number of top finishers will all get 2018 PCA packages. Packages are worth $15,855 apiece and will get you the ME buy-in, full accommodation, travel expenses and pocket money. 5 Levels of Satellites There are also five different levels of satellites you can enter to make it to that direct qualifier. They run with buy-ins of $109, $55, $16.50, $5.50, and $1.10. There are a lot of them in the lobby under the live events and/or satellites tab. But there is also a side way to the PCA. You can find it in the Spin and Go area of the lobby. Play the $27.50 buy-in level and they have surprise prizes from $55 tournament tickets all the way up to a full $16k PCA prize package. “I will tell you from my own experience," says PokerStars Team Pro Felipe Ramos, "because that’s how I started to play in live events. Play the $530 satellite. This gives you a real shot at the prize package.” “Try to satellite into the direct qualifier with a buy-in according to your bankroll, so you have several shots. Try the $55 or even lower, any of these gives you a realistic chance.” Get your own PokerStars account through PokerListings. Check out our PokerStars review and download the poker software from there. $50k Player Giveaway PokerStars has also added some additional prizes for anyone to win. Win a share in the $50k Player Giveaway, for example. This is a lottery giving away $5,000-$20,000 to six different players at the PCA. Every time you enter an event before the end of Level 1 you’ll get five tickets. There are more tickets to be won by making the money or finishing on the bubble. The buy-in level has no influence on the number of tickets you get. You can also get them by getting certain hands in cash games.  At the end of the adventure there’s a $50k Freeroll awaiting you! Everybody who enters any PCA event is eligible to play for the $50k prize pool. The freeroll runs on January 14. If you make the final table of any official PCA event you’ll add an iPad, a GoPro, a digital camera or something similar to your prize. There’ll be even more rewards and promotions live on-site and you’ll even get the chance to meet sports icon Usain Bolt and Hollywood comedian Kevin Hart.  A Poker Trip to Remember The 2018 Caribbean Adventure takes place January 6-14 with 30 events including, of course, the main event. But the Atlantis Resort is no ordinary poker location. You’ll stay on pretty much a private island that has white-sand beaches, pools and a wide range of water slides at your disposal - some of which are not for the faint-hearted. The Atlantis is a maritime museum, a beach club, an international food court, a whole collection of bars and a big casino that can get as busy as some on the Strip in Vegas. It WILL be something you’ll talk about for many years after. Don't miss your chance to experience one of the iconic events in poker by creating a new account here.Visit

#SnowDay: Brace Yourself for 11-Day XL Blizzard on 888poker
34 must-play events. A $1 million Winners promotion. Online satellites starting at 1c.888poker will dominate the online poker scene again this January with the 3rd instalment of its revamped poker festival schedule. This time around it's the XL Blizzard Series, which helps kicks off the online poker year in 2018 and follows in the trailblazing footprints of this past year's XL Eclipse and XL Inferno.  Key Dates This is the first-ever XL Blizzard series and a tight 34-event schedule has been planned from January 18-28. It's a pare down from the 200-event smorgasbord of the Eclipse and Inferno but still offers a variety of games and big guarantees.  Some key events to look forward to: January 18: $109 Opening Event, $80,000 guaranteed January 20: $88 Crazy Eights Event, $50,000 guaranteed January 21: $160 Tune Up, $200,000 guaranteed January 23: $2,100 High Roller Event, $250k guaranteed January 28: $1,050 Main Event, $1,000,000 guaranteed Expect to see 888 pro Vivian Saliba in deep in the PLO. 888poker wouldn’t be 888poker if there wasn't a ton of added value and this time there are some big incentives for both winners and the unlucky. 2018 Main Event Package for CoC Winner Once again there will be a leaderboard across the tournament series and the top 50 ranked players will meet again in a "Best of the Best" tournament. The winner of this special invitational will receive the dream prize for every poker player – a WSOP main event ticket plus travel and hotel expenses for the 2018 World Series in Las Vegas. The second- and third-place finishers in the Champion of Champions event will also travel to Vegas and play the $3,000 Crazy 8 Event. All finishers up to 40th place will receive online tournament tickets for $1,050, $600 and $55. $1,000,000 to the Winner of Winners! Players who manage to win two tournaments in the XL Blizzard will receive an extra $1,000 into their poker account. Anybody who wins three Blizzard events will receive an extra $10,000. If anybody can win four events they will get $100,000 and, in case there is someone so good they win five, it’ll grant them an additional $1,000,000! 2018 WSOP awaits! One player – Kaktus26rus – took down three events during the XL Eclipse so while it's clearly a tough task, it's not unreachable should a bit of run-good come your way. Bubble of Bubbles Tourney If the run-good isn't on your side in this one there's something for you, too. As a very nice consolation prize 888poker will invite all the “bubble boys” to play in a special tournament whose winner will still make it to Las Vegas next summer to play the $3,000 Crazy 8 event. The other final table players will get tournament tickets for $160 and $55. For new players, the "bubble" is the last spot in a tournament that doesn’t pay out money. 3 Seats to the Main Event Every Day! To get into the XL Blizzard Main Event you can use the 888poker steps system and climb your way up the hard way by starting at level 1 for just one cent. Satellites on now! However, to celebrate the first of these winter festivals, 888poker is giving away three seats to the ME every day! The freerolls are in the lobby under the XL Blizzard tab and they run daily at 7:30 PM GMT. Every freeroll has three $1,050 main event tickets up for grabs. All you need to do is make a deposit and use the promo code blizzard10. You’ll find three tickets to the freerolls in your account just hours later. Create your 888poker account with the help of PokerListings. Check out our 888poker review and download the software to access our huge $888 sign-up bonus and exclusive freerolls!Visit

Dom & a Spanish Cinderella: Get Briefed w/ Kara Scott & 888
November has been quite a month for poker.Poker circuit stalwart Dominik Nitsche won the WSOPE One Drop High Roller for his biggest career score. Spaniard Marti Roca de Torres, a former teacher, turned €250 into a €1.1m WSOPE main event win. Chris "Jesus" Ferguson - he of the famed leather coat and cowboy hat and Full Tilt Poker scandal - won the 2017 WSOP Player of the Year Award. Pennsylvania also became the 4th state to regulate online poker in the United States. It was a busy four weeks and 888poker ambassador Kara Scott breaks it all down for you in the latest edition of The Poker Brief. Online Poker Makes Progress in US Pennsylvania is the now the fourth state where online poker has been regulated and legalized again. The other three states are New Jersey, Delaware and, not surprisingly, Nevada. This is another – albeit small – step in the right direction. There are 12 brick-and-mortar casinos in Pennsylvania and it’ll be interesting to see which will be the first to step into the market by co-operating with online poker operators. Jesus an Unpopular POY The King’s Casino in Rozvadov played host to the WSOP Europe for the first time and will also be the host of the next edition in 2019. New banner incoming. What was supposed to be a great marketing coup for the now-largest casino in Europe was a little overshadowed, however, by the outcome of the 2017 WSOP Player of the Year race. The winner was Chris “Jesus” Ferguson. Having taken the lead of the table in the summer Ferguson wouldn’t miss the European finale of the race. He cashed in five more events and even won one of them for the sixth WSOP bracelet of his career. Ferguson was one of the co-founders of Full Tilt Poker and previously was one of the most popular poker players in the world. However, his involvement – or to be exact, his alleged involvement in the major Full Tilt scandal turned that reputation on its head and many players frowned upon seeing Ferguson race to that prestigious title. That’s probably going to get worse next year when Ferguson’s face will be hanging from 5m high banners at the Rio for everyone to see. Nitsche Wins 4th Bracelet in One Drop High Roller Rarely has there been a better decision for an online poker operator than to sign Dominik Nitsche.  The German poker nomad proved his skills in both his poker game and his ambassadorship when he took down the $111,111 WSOPE One Drop for $4 million, which is the biggest cash of his career. Nitsche liked to point out that the money isn’t the most important thing for him and he’s one of the few players from whom that actually sounds like a credible statement. But let’s not forget that the most important thing of that tournament is the money raised for charity and this event collected another $1m for Guy Laliberté’s One Drop initiative. The Spanish Cinderella Marti Roca de Torres is the newest WSOP Europe champion. The former Economics teacher had been playing professionally for a while but hadn’t left any particular marks. That changed last month when he prevailed in the Main Event field at the WSOPE in Rozvadov. Roca earned his main event entry through a €250 satellite on 888poker so his story more than just echoes Chris Moneymaker’s. We’ll see if his achievement will trigger a similar development in Spain but one thing’s for sure – he didn’t have it easy.  Other players at the final table were former BOM host and “Last Woman Standing" in the WSOP main event, Maria Ho, EPT Monte Carlo runner-up Jack Salter and Scottish poker champ Niall Farrell who also took down the €25k High Roller event to complete his live Triple Crown. Jump In with an $888 Bonus If you want to be part of December's headlines check out our 888poker review page, download the 888poker software and get started. You'll get access to our exclusive $888 sign-up bonus and weekly/monthly freerolls just for PokerListings players.Visit

Espen Uhlen Jørstad: "I Think There is a Beer for Everyone"
Winner of our 2017 Spirit of Poker Rising Star Award, Espen Uhlen Jørstad is a man of many talents beyond poker.Among the many skills of his we learned about in a previous interview, though, there was one in particular that sparked our interest. Not only does Jørstad have a Bachelors degree in Food Science, he took it all the way to the next level and graduated with a Master's degree in Brewing Science. Master of Brewing Science So he knows how to make - and recommend - great beers. That's something we needed to learn more about. PokerListings: Can you tell us again how you became interested in beer, especially as a profession? Espen Uhlen Jørstad: I was studying food science and technology at university in Norway. We studied things like meat, dairy products and beer, and the different ways you can work with them. I did my internship in a Norwegian brewery where I met a lot of beer geeks, obviously. (smile) They're not interested in drinking beer to get drunk - they won’t drink a 6-pack of Heineken just for the sake of it. Instead they'll just drink one or two better beers, enjoy the experience and discuss the flavors, etc. It was a bit of a revelation for me because until then I had never considered beer that way. I found it very interesting. IPA brewing at Norwegian Craft brewery Waldemars Brygghus. PL: Then you were a process technician in a Norwegian brewery. What exactly is that job? EUJ: First, I finished my Master’s degree and wrote my thesis for that brewery. Basically, my thesis was about creating a new beer for the brewery, trying out all the different flavors, recipes and so on. First you have to pick what beer style you want to create, then you do research about what the characteristics of that style are. For example, we picked a blonde ale so we studied the appropriate characteristics -- the foam, the aroma, the bitterness, the color, the alcohol content it should have, etc. And then from there you work backwards to figure out how you can fulfil these criteria. For bitterness and aromas you work mostly with the hops; for alcohol you need sugars, which you get from the malts. In some beers it’s appropriate to use added sugar like for the Trappist monasteries ones. But most beers you find in the supermarket that have added sugar are cheaper, lower quality ones. In addition to deciding the ingredients and which malt you want in which amount, you also need to figure out how long you mash the malt with water, how long you should boil it, the temperatures … You then also decide how much residual sugars you want for more sweetness or more alcohol. And then yes, I became a process technician. I was pretty much the brewmaster’s assistant. I was working on a lot of projects in the brewery and in the lab with microbiological, chemical and sensory analysis. It’s actually very scientific in a lab with a white coat and all! (laughs) PL: You preferred to work on your own after that and started a craft beer business. So why in Budapest? EUJ: When I started my Master’s degree with a few friends of mine the plan was always to create our own craft beer business. But the microbrewery market in Norway was totally saturated; there was at least one new microbrewery opening every week, it was crazy. We actually see the effect today with a lot of them going bankrupt. So we decided to avoid the Norwegian market. "Hungary was a good starting point for us." We looked at other markets and it so happened that my partner knew someone in Budapest who already had a microbrewery. This was a good starting point for us to work on our recipes and brew them from there at first. I also had a Hungarian girlfriend at the time, who was living with me in Norway, and obviously she was very excited about moving back to Hungary. Craft beer was still really new in Hungary at the time so it was a really fresh market for us. PL: How did it go? You told us previously you put the project on hold because of poker. Where is it now? EUJ: Right now we have a dormant webpage, we have some recipes ready and we have a logo, but that’s about it. We did produce one beer, a stout with vanilla and coffee. It was a special Christmas beer with 9% alcohol content; very dark, called Baltazar. I think it’s still in production because it was co-produced with my partner’s uncle’s brewery. PL: What is the secret of a good brewer? EUJ: That’s a good question. I think it’s just about not being scared to try and fail a lot. I can’t say it’s all about creativity because that’s just not true. Obviously it helps if you drink beer, because you know the flavors and you know the market. You know what’s trendy at any given time. Most of the brewers I admire, the ones that are recognized for their knowledge, it’s all because they’ve been on the market for 20 years and they have tried and tried and tried again. They know exactly what will happen if they increase the temperature of the mash by two degrees, let the brew boil for 20 minutes more or if they add or subtract a certain hop or malt. PL: What is the most important thing you learned about beer (and which people maybe don’t know about)? EUJ: I would say that people should try a lot of different beers. Craft beer is still minor in a lot of European markets, maybe 1 or 2% of the market, so I would advise people to try craft beers. Mass-produced beers are lagers basically all tasting the same with only minor variations. So go out and try some different beers, find the craft bars in your town and sample various styles. Ask the bartender; he will guide you in the right direction and then you’re hooked. (laughs) PL: Can you tell us more what you call the “microbreweries and craft beer culture?” Where it all began. Bathroom floor homebrewing during college. EUJ: The culture is all about the experience and the flavors, finding new flavors, aromas, exploring different sensations, discussing and, of course, the people. Most beer geeks write notes, rate beers on apps, go to festivals to discover new beers … it’s a really interesting community. PL: What is your favorite type of beer? Your favorite beer? And the best beer you ever drank? EUJ: It depends a lot on where I am and what the time of the year is. If I’m in Malta and it’s 35° outside, I will not be drinking a barrel-aged imperial stout with 12% alcohol because it’s too heavy. I’d rather have a Heineken to be honest. (laughs) More seriously, in summer I like Belgian sour beers or lighter IPAs, refreshing beers. In winter in Norway, in front of a fire place watching a movie, I’d prefer a darker beer like a stout, a porter or maybe a barley wine. If I really have to pick one beer that got me interested in beer at first, which I found different, I’d pick the beer #500 by a Norwegian brewery called Nøgne Ø. It’s an imperial IPA with 10% alcohol and five different types of both hops and malts. It’s very complex and it has lots of interesting flavors, it’s really delicious. But other than that I can’t pick a “favorite.” I’ve had so many “perfect” beers it’s hard to find one that really stands out. Still, here are a few of my favorites that you can find in Europe: #1:  Oude Kriek – Sour beer with cherries from legendary Belgian Brewery Brouwerij 3 Fonteinen. #2:  Spresso – Imperial Espresso Stout from London-based brewery Beavertown. #3:  Yang – Double IPA from New York-based Danish brewer Evil Twin. Sampling some great US beers. PL: Do Norwegians drink lot of beer? EUJ: Yes, but still much less than the big beer-drinking countries like Czech Republic, Denmark or Germany. If you look at statistics we are far behind our neighbors in Denmark for example. (laughs) Also alcohol in Norway is so heavily taxed that buying a Norwegian beer in Sweden would be half the price compared to buying it in Norway. In Norway craft beer became really popular only about 5 years ago while in Denmark it’s been happening for at least 9 years. And then even more in the US. I think in the US craft beers represent 20% of the market, then about 7% in Denmark and almost 5% in Norway. But in Europe everything is still pretty new and overall I’d say that most of Europe is way behind. In the US home brewing became very popular in the 80s when it got legalized and this lead to microbreweries, then competitions, etc. They have some of the best beers in the world. For example San Diego, California, and Portland, Oregon, are two of the best beer cities in the world. Even some of the best “Belgian-style beers” are from the US. PL: Any Norwegian (or Scandinavian) beer you would recommend? EUJ: I can give you my three favorite Norwegian beers: "#500 is the beer that got me interested in beer. Complex, delicious and perfect." #1:  #500 – Pretty much flawless Double IPA from Norway's biggest craft brewery, Nøgne Ø. #2:  La Shaman Aztec Stout – Delicious dry stout brewed with smoked chipotle chilli peppers, habanero chilli peppers and raw cacao beans, from new school superstar brewery Austmann. #3:  Tasty Juice – Super fruity and fresh New England-style IPA from Stavanger brewery Lervig. PL: Do you feel the view on beer has changed? And that it is seen more and more as a gourmet thing like wine? EUJ: Wine always had the image of the fancy drink and beer a more “rowdy” drink. But I think it’s changing a bit now because beer is just as complex and interesting as wine and the flavor spectrum is very wide. I think there is a beer for everyone. When people tell me they don’t like beer I always tell them they just haven’t found the beer they like. Beer is everything from fruity beers like lambic or Belgian krieks to 60% alcohol ice-distilled beers that you drink in cognac glasses. PL: Can these still be considered as beers? EUJ: It is still technically a beer if it is brewed with barley and yeast and water and hops. Same goes for the ice-distilled beers even if you can discuss if it’s maybe more a liquor. Basically they freeze it in a machine, scrape away the ice, freeze it again, over and over… The brewery that got famous from brewing this first was BrewDog from Scotland with their dark beer called Tactical Nuclear Penguin which is 32% ABV. They also have a 41% ABV quadruple IPA, super hoppy. It tastes like a pure hop cocktail basically. Those are very interesting beers. PL: Which is the best beer to drink while playing poker? "There's a beer for everyone. Try!" EUJ: Alcohol-free! (laughs). But if you really want to drink alcohol I’d suggest one that is light in alcohol, like a berliner weisse or a pale ale. No more than 3-4%! At least if you want to win. If you just want to have fun then it doesn’t matter. (laughs) PL: Did you know there's a beer from Colombia called poker? It’s a lager produced by Bavaria, one of the leaders in Bogota. EUJ: I’ve never heard of that one but I’ve had a few beers with poker-related names like “Ace on the River” etc. It’s all marketing but I have to admit it works. I always try them when I see them. And usually they are not good. (laughs) PL: Any anecdote you have about beer or something you want to add? Any advice maybe? EUJ: I do have some advice and it’s really simple: if you want to buy beer, just download RateBeer or Untappd and you can see how high beers are rated. With beer there’s no way to know the quality of a beer unless you actually know the brewery, so this is really useful. Otherwise, I’ll just say that people should just try many different beers. For poker people who travel a lot, don’t rely on what you know -- be adventurous. Ask bartenders or beer geeks and try!Visit

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