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Gossip Column: Negreanu Gets Lean on Vegan Diet, De Silva Refutes 2011 World Cup Final Fixing Claims & More

Daniel Negreanu, Aravinda de Silva, Skillz & Warwick Mirzikinian - Gossip Column
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  • Attreyee K. Ganguly 3 weeks ago
  • 5 Minutes Read

Canadian poker pro Daniel Negreanu always manages to wiggle his way into the spotlight. After betting $1 Million over his prospects of winning a seventh WSOP bracelet in 2020, Negreanu created quite a storm on Instagram after posting some pictures showing a drastically leaner version of himself. Apparently, he’s lost a ton of weight through a vegan diet!

Talking about bets, former Sri Lankan Sports Minister Mahindananda Aluthgamage has alleged that the Sri Lanka National Cricket Team deliberately lost the 2011 World Cup finals to India. Sri Lanka batting legend Aravinda de Silva has refuted the claims made by Aluthgamage while at the same time urging the ICC, BCCI, and SLC to investigate the matter.

While we are on the subject of cheating, the latest scandal to hit the gaming world was one involving Skillz, a gaming site accused of scamming two high stakes players, Alyssa Ball and John Prignano. Both players have filed a lawsuit against the company seeking $5.9 Million in damages.

While getting cheated is terrible, it’s still better than going to jail. That is what Australian poker champ Warwick Mirzikinian is facing, now that he has been charged with the death of Uber Eats cyclist, Julien Trameaux. The poker pro has offered to pay for Trameaux’s funeral. Whether that’ll soften the judge’s heart into giving him a lighter sentence remains to be seen.


Daniel Negreanu Goes Vegan to Lose Weight

Six-time WSOP bracelet winner, Daniel Negreanu who was recently in the news for making a million-dollar bet on winning his seventh WSOP bracelet this year, is back in the spotlight. This time the attention was not on his poker prowess but on his weight.

As witnessed by the pictures shared by ‘Kid Poker’ on Instagram, Negreanu has definitely lost a lot of weight and is looking rather lean.

The image that was shared about a week ago received mixed response. While there were many positive comments, there were a few negative ones too.

‘golfnut1320’ said, “Get something to eat kidd”

‘richfrancafelipe’ wrote, “Dude what the hell u been doing crack?”

‘olesaint_nick’ exclaimed, “jesus eat a sandwich!”

‘girlwiththenuts’ chimed in, “Bankroll getting small? Someone needs a hamburger

While on the other hand, some people did show support as well.

‘marcopoker’ said, “Best shape EVER!”

‘thepokerpriest’ stated, “Didn’t even recognize Daniel. Have fun with the bulk! It’s definitely more fun then cutting”

‘tomasifreestocks’ wrote, “Apparently lean is unhealthy in America smh. U look good bro, keep it going 🏿

A few days ago, the Canadian pro shared another image, and this time explained what was happening in the caption.

View this post on Instagram

This @noetics_hood shirt never ever came close to fitting. Now I have a little wiggle room in it. This is the last week of my cut, then I start bulking next week. For the haters: No, I am not sick. My face and neck are much leaner so it may appear that way to you due to losing 35 lbs over 6 months. It’s all part of the @fritz_horstmann plan to lose the fat first, then add the bulk. I went from 176 to 141 and in the next year plan to get back to about 160-165 staying lean and adding muscle. I’m 45 years old and am the fittest I’ve ever been by a wide margin. I feel great, eating a healthy vegan diet, and can see abs for the first time in my life and am proud of it! I know the comments already: “Eat a steak” “Proof the vegan diet makes you look sickly” “You been smoking crack” “You have Covid” “You look like you have cancer” If you are one of the people leaving such a comment, ask yourself how you got the point where you think this is a good idea. Be kind. You do you, and I’ll do me. #vegan #plantbased #plantbaseddiet #fitness

A post shared by Daniel Negreanu (@dnegspoker) on

Elaborating on the story behind his massive weight loss, Negreanu wrote, “For the haters: No, I am not sick. My face and neck are much leaner so it may appear that way to you due to losing 35 lbs over 6 months. It’s all part of the @fritz_horstmann plan to lose the fat first, then add the bulk.

I went from 176 to 141 and in the next year plan to get back to about 160-165 staying lean and adding muscle. I’m 45 years old and am the fittest I’ve ever been by a wide margin. I feel great, eating a healthy vegan diet, and can see abs for the first time in my life and am proud of it!”

It seems like Negreanu knows what he is doing, and we wish him all the best on his journey to ultimately bulk up!


Former Sri Lankan Cricketer Aravinda De Silva Refutes 2011 World Cup Final Fixing Claims

Former Sri Lankan Sports Minister Mahindananda Aluthgamage has come out with some very damning allegations that Sri Lanka “sold” the 2011 World Cup final to India, reviving one of cricket’s most explosive match-fixing controversies. Sri Lanka batting legend Aravinda de Silva has refuted the claims made by the ex-minister.

Aravinda De Silva
Aravinda De Silva


Aluthgamage, who was the sports minister in 2011, is the second senior figure to allege that the final was fixed, after 1996 World Cup-winning skipper Arjuna Ranatunga. “I tell you today that we sold the 2011 World Cup finals,” Aluthgamage told Sirasa TV. “Even when I was sports minister, I believed this.”

Aluthgamage, who is now the state minister for renewable energy and power, said he “did not want to disclose” the plot at the time. “In 2011, we were to win, but we sold the match. I feel I can talk about it now. I am not connecting players, but some sections were involved,” he said.

Sri Lanka lost the match at Mumbai’s Wankhede stadium by six wickets. Indian players have vehemently denied any wrongdoing. Ranatunga, who was at the stadium as a commentator, has previously called for an investigation into the defeat.

“When we lost, I was distressed, and I had a doubt,” he said in July 2017. “We must investigate what happened to Sri Lanka at the 2011 World Cup final. I cannot reveal everything now, but one day I will. There must be an inquiry,” added Ranatunga.

De Silva, who was the Chairman of Selectors of SLC during the 2011 World Cup, said: “We cannot let people get away all the time with lies. I request everyone, ICC, BCCI, and SLC to investigate this immediately.”

De Silva said legends like Sachin Tendulkar, who won his maiden World Cup after toiling for so long, deserve the respect earned after the triumph.

“Just like we cherished our World Cup victory, players like Sachin (Tendulkar) cherish these moments for the rest of their lives. I think in the interest of Sachin and the millions of cricket fans across India, it’s the duty of the Indian government and their cricket board to initiate an impartial inquiry to see whether they have won a fixed World Cup,” he said.

“When serious allegations like these are being made, it affects a lot of people. In this case, not only us, the selectors, the players, and the team management but Indian cricketers who deservingly won the world title. We need to clear this once and for all for the greater good of the game we love,” De Silva further added.

In the meantime, the Sri Lankan government has ordered an investigation into the allegations.


Gaming Site Skillz Sued For Cheating By High Stakes Players

Skill-based gaming platform, Skillz, is defrauding players according to the lawsuit filed by two individuals in the US District Court in Nevada. Alyssa Ball and John Prignano claim that Skillz refused to pay them hundreds of thousands in cash and prizes. On the other hand, the company claims that the plaintiffs are the only cheaters in this case.



Let’s start from the beginning. Skillz offers players real money competitive play in a variety of mobile games. These include apps based on casino games like blackjack, sports games, traditional board games, puzzles, or just about anything else you might find in your favorite app store. Skillz claims their site offers legal gaming in 38 states since it features games of skill under the definitions of chance and gambling in those jurisdictions.

According to Ball, a 19-year-old from Nevada, she lost $650,000 to a cheater on the site in Blitz21, a game that includes elements of blackjack and solitaire. After notifying Skillz of the alleged cheating, Ball says the site only warned the unnamed opponent and suspended her account.

Things got murkier when Ball further claimed that when she found Skillz CEO Andrew Paradise on Instagram to confront him about the situation, he sent her an inappropriate response.

“Have we met somewhere? I feel like I’d remember as you’re too beautiful to be forgettable,” Ball alleges Paradise to have written. “Haha, and if we haven’t met, we should, I’m in Vegas all the time.”

Ball said that Skillz terminated her account, seizing her $28,000 balance.

Prignano makes similar claims, minus the personal interactions. According to Prignano, he earned enough rewards points on the site to redeem them for a Porsche Boxster, worth approximately $60,000. But when he tried to claim his reward, he alleges that Skillz increased the number of points needed for the car without warning. Skillz later accused Prignano of cheating, then banned him from the site and confiscated the $286,000 lying in his account.

Moreover, Prignano claims to have lost about $950,000 to the same individual named by Ball, in addition to another $350,000 to two other alleged cheaters, named only as John Does 2 and 3 in the lawsuit.

Skillz released a statement saying that the actions it took were simply to prevent cheating on its site.

“This suit was filed by two people who colluded to cheat the Skillz community,” a spokesperson for Skillz said. “They were caught by our trust and safety team and kicked off of our platform in accordance with our terms of service and commitment to honesty, integrity and fairness. Their case has no merit and is an attempt to intimidate our company and obtain illegitimate gains.”

Lawyer Mac VerStandig, who represented a group of poker players who sued Mike Postle and Stones Gambling Hall over alleged cheating during live streamed games, represents the two plaintiffs. Ball and Prignano seek $5.9 Million in damages and are asking for a jury trial on nine counts, including consumer fraud, fraud, and unjust enrichment.


Australian Poker Pro Warwick Mirzikinian Apologizes For Accidentally Killing Uber Eats Cyclist

A Sydney businessman and champion poker player, Warwick Mirzikinian, has been charged over a crash that killed a French food delivery cyclist, Julien Trameaux, in the city’s affluent eastern suburbs. The incident took place when Mirzikinian, a resident of Point Piper, was driving his luxury car when he hit the 24-year-old cyclist on New South Head Road at Double Bay on November 14, 2017.

Warwick Mirzikinian
Warwick Mirzikinian


The 49-year-old attended Rose Bay Police Station on Sunday and was issued a court attendance notice for dangerous driving occasioning death and negligent driving occasion death, NSW Police said in a statement on Monday.

The Australian poker pro has made a public declaration that he is willing to pay for Trameaux’s funeral.

Mirzirkinian’s wealth made him famous in Australia, where he lives with his wife near the Prime Minister in Sydney’s most expensive suburb. Mirzikinian is best known in the poker world for his appearance at last year’s WSOP, where he finished 20th in the Main Event for $324,650.

It is not clear how much of that he’s going to fork out for Trameaux’s funeral, or indeed if the family has accepted his money. He is now awaiting his sentencing, which could land him in jail for up to 20 years.

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