Poker Around the World

With the WSOP Main Event fast approaching all eyes will soon turn to Las Vegas, but this week has brought big poker news from all corners of the world.

We’ve already covered the happenings in Hammond, IN but it’s worth mentioning that the WSOP Circuit also traveled to Africa for the first time this week with its South African stop at the Emerald Casino in Vanderbijlpark. This leg of the series features only two events – Pot Limit Omaha with an $1100 buy-in and the must-have NL Hold’em Main Event with a $5000 buy-in. Brazilian pro Felipe Ramos took home the top PLO prize of $36,786 with South African pros rounding out the rest of the top four.

While the PLO event had only 37 entries, the Main Event boasted of a respectable and pro-heavy field of 188 players. In especially high attendance have been female pros. Gus Hansen also made an appearance, though he was knocked out early. The event ends Sunday with a final table that includes:Raj Aiyalavajjala, Mel Banfield, Rob Fenner, Muaaz Gani, Maria Ho, Kyri Patsalos, Jason Strauss, Hugh Todd and Warren Zackey. While the inaugural African leg of the WSOP-C didn’t count for series points or award any rings, the solid turnout will likely earn South Africa an official place in next year’s series.

Earlier this week the Paddy Power-sponsored Irish Winter Festival named a new Irish Masters Champion. The main event attracted a surprisingly large field of 347 players, but the native pros came out on top with a huge showing in the final nine. Young gun Nicholas Newport took home the title and the top prize of €125,000 for the biggest win of his relatively short career.

Finally, tomorrow marks Day 4 of the European Tour in Vienna. Revered pro Daniel Negreanu is coming to the final table with a 1 million+ chip lead which puts him within an event’s distance of both his first EPT title and the number one spot on the all-time earnings list (which is currently held by Phil Ivey). Hoping to squash his moment of glory are his fellow final tablers: Konstantinos Nanos, Michael Eiler, Luca Cainelli, Bruno Launais, Matthias Lotze, Martin Hruby and Andreas Wiese.

Next month’s international news includes the WPT Amneville event in France which runs from November 2-6 and the final leg of the Russian Poker Tour which is set to take place in Kiev, Ukraine from November 9-18.

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