Poker Strategy

Grosvenor Casino’s Full Schedule for 2018


Grosvenor Casinos has released its full schedule of live poker events for this year which includes details of the 12th season of the Grosvenor UK Poker Tour (GUKPT), namely the Goliath, the popular 25/25 Series and the UK Student Poker Championships.

Last year’s GUKPT featured 10 legs and awarded  £3,698 throughout the year.  The coming season’s schedule has been reduced by one leg with GUKP Walsall having been removed from the calendar.

The first leg of the 2018 GUKPT took place in London between 28th January and 4th February 2018 with a £1,100 buy-in Main Event and a £200,000 guarantee.

The tour heads to Manchester from London then to Edinburgh, Reading, back to London for a £560 buy-in tournament and a £100,000 guarantee then to Leeds, Luton, Blackpool, finishing off the year with a £2,140 Grand Final with a massive guaranteed prize pool of £400,000.

The 2018 GUKPT Schedule is as follows –

Dates Leg Main Event Buy-in Main Event Guarantee Location
Jan. 28-Feb. 4 GUKPT London £1,110 £200,000 The Poker Room, London
Feb. 25-Mar. 4 GUKPT Manchester £1,110 £200,000 Grosvenor Casino Bury New Road
Apr. 22-29 GUKPT Edinburgh £560 £100,000 Grosvenor Casino Maybury
Jun. 3-10 GUKPT Reading £560 £100,000 Grosvenor Casino Reading South
Jul 1-8 GUKPT London 500 £560 £100,000 The Poker Room, London
Sep. 9-16 GUKPT Leeds £560 £100,000 Grosvenor Casino Leeds Westgate
Oct. 7-14 GUKPT Luton £1,110 £200,000 Grosvenor Casino Luton
Nov. 4-11 GUKPT Blackpool £1,110 £200,000 Grosvenor Casino Blackpool
Nov. 25-Dec. 2 GUKPT Grand Final £2,140 £400,000 The Poker Room, Lond


The Goliath was the biggest live poker tournament held outside the USA during 2017 when 6,385 entries were processed.  This year’s edition that runs from 26th July to 5th August 2018 could increase with the eventual champion being guaranteed to win at least £100,000 for an investment of £125.

Grosvenor’s 25/25 Series is a well-structured tournament that players can play for a low buy-in cost of £225.  It offers guaranteed prize pools of £25,000 and heads to 30 casinos between 11th January and 9th December 2018.

The Grosvenor Casinos UK Student Poker Championship takes place from 4th to 8th April 2016 at the Grosvenor Casino Coventry in the Ricoh Arena.  The Main Event is a £37 buy-in.

Unibet Poker Announces UK Poker Tour Season 3 Dates


Unibet Poker has announced that it has once again partnered with Caesars Interactive UK for the third season of its UK Poker Tour.

A £220 buy-in Main Event that features in each of the four stops boasts a £40,000 guaranteed prize pool with players having an opportunity to win their way into it cheaply, online at Unibet Poker.  Unibet has made a number of changes to the Main Event’s structure following feedback from the tour’s players.

One of the biggest changes is doubling the starting stack from 25,000 to 50,000 chips that should result in deeper stacks as the tournament progresses.  There is also a huge change in the introduction of what Unibet Poker is calling the “flexi-clock” that sees blind levels range between 25 and 45 minutes depending on the stage the tournament is in.

It will still be possible for players to re-enter once per starting day and play in Day 1a as well as Day 1b, taking their largest stack through to the final day.

Unibet UK Poker Tour 2018

Dates Venue
Mar. 23-25 Brighton Rendezvous
Jun. 29-Jul. 1 Glasgow Alea
Sep. 28-30 Brighton Rendezvous
Dec. 7-9 Manchester 235


Unibet is due to run two” last longer” promotions at each UK Poker stop. A €2,000 Unibet Open package will go to the online qualifier who lasts the longest in each Main Event and an additional €2,000 Unibet Open package will be awarded to each stop’s champion.

Players have a chance to win a €500 package online at Unibet Poker.  Unibet Poker will also run a three package guaranteed final each Saturday at 7.00 p.m. GMT where players can secure the Unibet UK Poker Tour Main Event buy-in as well as some spending money.

David Lappin, an Ambassador at Unibet, revealed that he is a huge fan of grassroots poker that it is players’ responsibility as pro’s to support it whenever possible.  He added that the UK Tour travels to great venues, guarantees tasty prize-pools and this year, it is introducing a world-class modern innovation with the “Flexi-Clock” – a dynamic intuitive structure that promises meaningful poker from the start and more play at the end when it counts.

Ambassador Daiva Byrne will be hosting a Ladies event for UK players on the final day of each stop and they can also enjoy a free poker seminar at each event run by Ian Simpson, the former Irish Open Champion.

The Big Game to Return with PLO Edition at partypoker Millions Germany


Partypoker’s The Big Game, which is one of the most famous televised cash games around, will be returning next month for its very first PLO edition.  The eight-handed €50/€100 game is scheduled to take place during the €12.5 million guaranteed MILLIONS German series at King’s Casino in Rozvadov.

The cash game will run for 36 hours straight, starting at 6 p.m. on Saturday, 10th February and ending at 6 a.m. on Monday, 12th February 2018.  There will be a minimum buy-in for the game of €20,000 and players will have an opportunity to buy in for a maximum of €40,000.

Numerous interesting players, which include leading pros and businessmen, are expected on the scene, many of them the usual experts, namely partypoker Ambassador Sam Trickett, actress and WSOP Ladies Event winner Jennifer Tilly, Dusk till Dawn owner Rob Yong and accomplished businessman known as “The Wolf” Yair Bitoun.

International poker experts Phil Laak, Philipp Gruissem and Viktor Blom will also be attending as well as another figure who has been instrumental in attracting the multitude of viewers to The Big Game – Lithuanian poker pro-turned-politician Antanas “Tony G” Guoga.

The Big Game is unique due to the presence of an online qualifier joining the game by winning the partypoker Big Game Challenge.  The competition for this seat that comes with a package valued at over $27,000 will run online at partypoker between now and Sunday, 4th February 2018 with the winner being awarded the following –

  • $20,000 Big Game buy-in
  • $5,300 MILLIONS Online entry
  • €1,100 MILLIONS Open entry
  • 5 nights’ accommodation
  • $900 for travel and expenses

Partypoker is also bringing back the “vote-off”, a feature of the original game.  Another feature that is new for the upcoming edition is the “party button booster”.

Sam Trickett, commented on the forthcoming event by saying that he is really looking forward to the return of The Big Game as it is always huge fun to play – even if you do not win – and he is looking forward to testing his PLO skills against the likes of Isildur and Tony G.

Trickett went on to say that The Big Game is one of the most popular poker shows on TV and will be a very exciting part of the MILLIONS Germany schedule in Rozvadov.



PokerStars Shared Liquidity Network in Europe to Use “Seat Me”


PokerStars will be using a shared European liquidity network soon that will not allow players to table select.

Online poker traditionally allows players to browse through a selection of available tables and then choose the seats they liked best.  However, with the “Seat Me” system, players get to choose a game and a stake while the system selects a seat for them, which is similar to the way seating works in most live poker rooms.

Severin Rasset, the Director of Innovation and Poker Operations at PokerStars, commented that they have achieved most of their initial goals with “Seat Me”.   Rasset went on to say that this will greatly reduce players’ ability to hunt specific opponents, completely preventing the use of seating scripts and creating an environment where recreational players play more hands.

There are a number of challenges that come with a shared liquidity network that include regulatory hoops to jump through in two different jurisdictions, which make it quite difficult if the two areas are not on the same page in terms of regulations.  The rollout of the actual product presents choices due to the fact that the operator cannot always simply copy and paste an old product into a new market.

Spain has, in this case, been the test market for “Seat Me”.

According to PokerStars, the system was meant to “improve the overall experience” of players.  They explicitly announced that they were endeavouring to reduce the ability to “bumhunt” or allow strong players to look out for weaker ones.  The new system aimed at seating scripts allowing players to instantly sit whenever a profitable seat opened and data mining, where players could collect data on opponents’ play styles without actually playing with them.

Unfortunately, the system effectively blocked players from “railbirding” on the high stakes tables which have been a vast part of online poker since its inception at most sites.  The industry has, however, been changing.

A year after the implementation of Seat Me, PokerStars had a decision to make with the coming shared liquidity network between Spain and France and eventually Italy and Portugal.  They could go with traditional online poker seating or Seat Me out of the Spain test market.

PokerStars has seen enough of a positive result from the system and intends implementing it to a wider customer base.


888 Ambassadors Head to London in February


888poker Live will be returning to action for the first time this year when it makes its’ way to Aspers Casino in London from Thursday 8th to Sunday 11th February 2018.

888poker Live Kick Off 2018 is a £440 buy-in tournament that will feature four starting flights that come with a guaranteed prize pool of a massive sum of £120,000.  Day 1 will see players sitting down with 25,000 tournament chips in order to play blinds of 30 minutes and 40 minutes on Day 2.  Those players who dust off their stack during the 210-minute late registration period will have a chance to re-enter twice.

It would appear as though a number of members of the 888poker ambassador lineup will be present in the British capital.  Dominik Nitsche will definitely be playing while a trio of 888’s ladies will also be heading to London.  Kara Scott, Natalie Hof and 888poker’s newest ambassador Vivian Saliba will be demonstrating their skills at Aspers Casino.

Chris Moorman, online poker’s most recognized player, is also due to descend on the largest casino in the United Kingdom and will be pulling out all the stops in order to get 2018 off to a winning start.  Moorman is bound to be confident of winning a tournament on home soil.

Although the £440 buy-in makes 888poker Live Kick Off 2018 quite affordable, 888poker is still running satellites into the £120.000 guaranteed Main Event.  A $12 buy-in satellite guarantees at least one £440 ($600) seat while those wanting to get their hands on a package are required to play in the $30 buy-in satellites.

Those players who manage to play their way to a $1,200 package will receive –

  • The £440 ($600) 888poker Live Kick Off Main Event buy-in
  • $300 for accommodation
  • $300 for travel expenses

There are also feeder satellites at a cost of a mere $0.01 running around the clock for those wanting to try and win a $1,200 package for a single cent.


PokerStars to Launch $9 Million-Added Players Championship Next Year


PokerStars announced the launch of the annual Players No Limit Hold’em Championship (PSPC) last month, an exclusive live poker tournament that will see it pump at least $9 million of added value into the prize pool, intending to make it the richest $25,000 buy-in tournament in the history of poker.

The inaugural PSPC is scheduled to be held the week before the 2019 PokerStars Caribbean Adventure in the Bahamas.

PokerStars add a massive amount of $9 million to the prize pool.  An amount of $8 million in PSPC tournament will be awarded throughout this year by PokerStars by way of 300 free PSPC packages, known as Platinum Passes, with a value of $30,000 (including travel and accommodation).  The additional amount of $1 million will be awarded to the prospective PSPC champion.

Rafi Ashkenazi, the Chief Executive Officer of The Stars Group, commented that they expect that the PokerStars Players No Limit Hold’em Championship will set the new global standard for live poker tournaments.

Ashkenazi went on to say that they would like to demonstrate and reinforce their commitment to the game, and give something back to the players by investing in their live events in a meaningful way.  He added that their objective is to create an event that brings professionals and amateurs together, creating many winning moments and unforgettable stories.

Daniel Negreanu, Team PokerStars Pro added that he is super excited about the Players No Limit Hold’em Championship.  He also said that this is going to be an incredible experience for those who participate and that everyone, no matter their skill level, has a chance to win a Platinum Pass.  He added that it will be a must-play event with loads of added value.

Each Platinum Pass is worth $30,000 and includes –

  • The $25,000 buy-in to the PSPC
  • Six nights’ accommodation at Atlantis Resort Nassau
  • $2,000 in travel expenses
  • Some exciting rewards and surprises that are still to be announced.

Players can earn a $30,000 Platinum Package by winning key online tournaments, such as the Sunday Million and Sunday Storm, or by winning a Micro Millions event, a Turbo Championship of Online Poker (TCOOP) tournament, a World Championship of Online Poker (WCOOP) event or some other specified tournaments throughout the year.  Platinum Packages could even be put in PokerStars’ chest rewards and9+ can also be received by players by winning Main Events at PokerStars’ live events and via last longer competitions and wildcards.



PokerStars Caribbean Adventure


A good way to bring in the New Year is by heading to the Atlantis Paradise Island Resort in the Bahamas for the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure (PCA) which is due to take place between Saturday, 6th and Sunday, 14th January 2018.

Included in the schedule are 31 action-packed tournaments, the highlight of which is the six-day $10,300 PCA Main Event taking place from 8th to 14th January when players will start off with 30,000 in chips and 60-minute blind levels before increasing to 90 minutes later in the tournament.

Last year saw Christian Harder finishing on top of the 738-entrant field when the event was branded as the PokerStars Championship Bahamas Event.  Harder won an amount of $429,664 after agreeing to a heads-up deal with Cliff Josephy.

The upcoming Man Event will see the buy-in being doubled from $5,000 to $10,000.  In addition, 300 players qualified online at PokerStars for a full package to the Main Event, valued at $14,855.

Those who participate in at least one tournament in the festival will be invited to a PCA $50,000 Freeroll on Sunday, 14th January 2018.  Side-event buy-ins commence at only $160.  Any player appearing at the final table will be given a gift, valued at up to $500 over and above the cash amount awarded.

Players can also get involved in the $50,000 Player Giveaway and earn tickets in tournaments as well as cash games.  Tournament players can earn five tickets into a random draw where six players will be awarded prizes by being seated in an event at the first blind level.  Another five tickets will be given if they bubble any event and one ticket if they finish in the money in any event.

Anytime cash game players are dealt a full house, they will earn one ticket while two tickets are earned any time they are dealt quads and three tickets if they are dealt a royal flush.  Cash game players will also automatically participate in a High Hand Jackpot where $300 is awarded every hour during 6 p.m. and 2 a.m. between Sunday, 7th and Saturday, 13th January 2018.


Record-Breaking $20m Gtd. MILLIONS Online announced by partypoker


Partypoker hosted the $5,300 partypoker MILLIONS Online a few weeks ago, which was the biggest event in the site’s history.  The event gained lots of attention in the poker world, proving to be a great success by surpassing its $5 million guarantee with 1,047 entrants generating a prize pool of $5.135.  The inaugural event was won by Jonathan “sordykrd” Van Fleet who walked away with $1,027 million which was slightly more than the $1 million guaranteed for the first place.

Partypoker has revealed that they will return the event next year from 1st till 4th December 2018 featuring a guaranteed prize pool that will be quadrupled to a whopping $20 million, which is the biggest guarantee in the history of online poker.

Partypoker has announced two ways that players can win a free seat to the event in addition to a couple of satellites and feeder tournaments that are planned for throughout the year.

The online poker room will be hosting a weekly MILLIONS Online Leaderboard as from 5th February 2018 with the top 10 spots each week being awarded entry to the $5,300 buy-in event.  This promotion will see a total of $3 million being awarded which will also include mid and low leaderboards giving out $22, $109 and $530 satellite tickets to the top 20 players.

Partypoker will also be rewarding the best players in each partypoker LIVE MILLIONS Main Event with 10 seats to the partypoker MILLIONS Online or $53,000 in value awarded to the top 10 players.  This will commence for the partypoker LIVE MILLIONS Germany to be held from 10th to 18th February 2018 at King’s Casino in Rozvadov, Czech Republic.

Tom Waters, the Managing Director at partypoker, thanked the players who supported the event and revealed that running the first MILLIONS Online this year was an exciting time for them, bringing the concept of their live tour online.

Waters went on to say that the feedback they had from their players was overwhelming and there was no better way to say thank you than to run it again, but this time making the guarantee a massive $20,000,000.

PokerStars to Launch $9 Million-Added Players Championship in 2019.


The Stars Group Inc. is pleased to announce the launch of the PokerStars Players No Limit Hold’em Championship.  This $25,000 buy-in poker tournament will be the culmination of all PokerStars online and live promotions and player rewards throughout next year.

The tournament is scheduled to take place in the Bahamas between Friday, 6th January and Wednesday, 10th January 2019 and will see PokerStars giving away an estimated $8 million worth of free tournament packages and contribute an additional $1 million to the prize pool generated by entrants for the first prize.  PokerStars is endeavouring to see the tournament being the richest-ever $25,000 live event in the history of poker.

The aim of this special poker tournament is to bring the poker world together in celebration of the game and providing a one-of-a-kind riveting live poker experience and the opportunity for all players of every skill level to win millions of dollars.

Rafi Ashkenazi, the Chief Executive Officer of The Stars Group, commented on the launch by saying that they expect the PokerStars Players’ No Limit Hold’em Championship will see the new global standard for live poker tournaments.  He added that they want to demonstrate and reinforce their commitment to the game, and give something back to the players by investing in their live events in a meaningful way.  Ashkenazi also said that their objective is to create an event that brings professionals and amateurs together, creating many winning moments and unforgettable stories.

PokerStars will be giving away over 300 tournament packages throughout next year.  These packages are known as Platinum Passes on PokerStars live tours all over the globe and online in tournaments, cash games, promotions, as well as via the Stars Rewards loyalty program.

It is expected that each Platinum Pass will be worth approximately $30,000 and include the $25,000 tournament buy-in, accommodation in the Atlantis Hotel and Casino Resort in the Bahamas as well as $2,000 in cash towards travel expenses.  Players also have an opportunity to buy in directly for an amount of $25,000.

Daniel Negreanu, Team PokerStars Pro, revealed that he is super excited about the Players No Limit Hold’em Championship.  He added that this is going to be an incredible experience for those who participate and everyone, no matter their skill level, has a chance to win a Platinum Pass.

My PP Live $$$ Introduced by partypoker


The partypoker LIVE tour proved to be extremely popular around the industry with a number of awesome events and massive guarantees.  However, a common complaint among poker players was the fact that by not qualifying for an event online at partypoker and not being able to attend and play, their chip stack was blinded off without them receiving anything in return.

In response, the team at partypoker will be introducing MY PP LIVE $$$ in January 2018 which is a new currency that can be used for live buy-ins to any partypoker LIVE Main or side events across all the live brands it is associated with including partypoker LIVE MILLIONS, Country Championships, Grand Prix’s and other events sponsored by partypoker, including WSOP Brazil.  Players can also use MY PP LIVE $$$ for hotel and travel expenses.

The introduction of MY PP LIVE $$$ will see players playing daily and weekly satellites instead of qualifying for an individual event, with the knowledge that they have the flexibility to pick the events that are best suited to their schedule.

According to President of partypoker LIVE John Duthie, PP LIVE $$$ is a result of listening to its players.  He added that the virtual currency has no expiration date.  He also said that a new leaderboard next year will see the players that earn the most PP Live $$$ awarded a share of $1 million.

Duthie went on to say that Partypoker LIVE $$$ can be used to buy into any partypoker LIVE event all over the world and pay for travel and accommodation without there being any expiry date.  He added that in order to launch partypoker LIVE $$$ they intend creating a Leaderboard in 2018 with $1,000,000 being divvied up between the top players.

To introduce the new virtual currency, partypoker ran a promotion that saw a satellite qualifier who won the $5M Gtd MILLIONS Online on 3rd to 5th December being awarded $1000,000 in their PP Live $$$ that will be used in any partypoker sponsored events of their choice.  This includes partypoker LIVE MILLIONS Germany on 12 to 18th February at King’s Casino, located on the border of Germany in the Czech Republic, featuring €10 million in guaranteed prize pools including the €5,300 partypoker LIVE MILLIONS Germany €5 Million Gtd. Main Event.

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