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PokerGuru Feature – Top 5 Stories Of 2013

Top 5 Stories of 2013
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  • PG News January 3, 2014
  • 5 Minutes Read

There is no denying the fact that poker in India has seen has exponential growth in popularity in the last couple of years. Poker is no longer just a Diwali game and several Indian poker players have now made a mark both in India and internationally. The nations interest in this card game seems to be peaking and the number of active poker players in the country is on a steady rise. 2013 has been a landmark year for Indian poker on more than one count and as we ring in the New Year here is a look at this year`s top 5 stories.

 

#1 Karnataka High Court Accepts Poker as a Game of Skill, Poker rooms resume operations in Bangalore

In a landmark decision passed in Oct`13, the Karnataka High Court declared that playing skill games like poker in recreational clubs is permitted and no license is necessary for the same.

The Karnataka police department had come down heavily on the poker room operators in June’13 where they shut over 1,000 card clubs in Bangalore on the instructions of home minister K J George. After several months of battle, poker action was alive once again in the city of Bangalore with the two biggest poker room operators, the Indian Poker Association and the Golden Aces resuming operations giving a sigh of relief for the poker enthusiasts in the city.

The Karnataka HC ruling sent the entire Indian poker industry in a tizzy, as this market changing decision was the first sign of legal acceptance of poker as a skill game in the country.

Read the complete story here.

 

#2 Aditya ‘Donkab0mber’ Sushant Chopped the Sunday Million on PokerStars

In one of the biggest achievements by an Indian this year, 24 year old Aditya ‘donkab0mber’ Sushant, recorded the highest single cash by an Indian in an online tournament ever. Former PokerGuru pro and our young gun of poker, Sushant managed to finish just one short of the pole position after losing the heads up battle to Germany’s ‘ATHIED87’ in the PokerStars Sunday Million, a $215 buy-in tournament with a $1 million guarantee. Sushant chopped the top prize in the tournament after a heads-up deal with the German and pocketed $168,157 (~ ₹1 crore)!

Sushant`s dream run may have bagged him life changing money but he was not the only Indian heating up the online felts in 2013. Several Indian poker pros and enthusiasts alike put up consistent performances throughout the year. Some notable mentions here are Team Mentor Aditya ‘Intervention’ Agarwal, young guns – Sahil ‘antilog’ Agarwal and Amit ‘bblacklegend’ Jain, and Arjun ‘4better’ Pasricha!

Read the complete story here.

 

#3 Goa Got a New Poker Venue in Casino Deltin Royale, Setup of Goa Gaming Commission

Goa, the hub of poker in India finally got an international standard poker venue in Casino Deltin Royale in Sep’13. The Goa government after a long four month battle finally gave in and accepted Delta Corporation’s application to transfer the existing license to replace their casino vessel Arabian Sea King with a much bigger vessel casino Horseshoe. The new Casino wasted no time in launching its in-house tournament brand Deltin Royale (DR Cup) and two editions later the DR Cup has become one of the most popular tournament brands in the country.

In addition to poker action, Goa also witnessed its fair share of drama ever since the BJP government led campaign against the casino industry became public. From survival threats to a new lease of life, Goa`s casino industry saw it all in 2013.

2013 also had Goa`s Chief Minister – Manohar Parrikar announcing the setup of an official gaming commission to regulate operations of both onshore and offshore casinos to ensure that the gambling operations in the casinos play by the rules defined by the state and to have better control on the operations of the casinos.

Casino Deltin Royale
Casino Deltin Royale

Read the complete story here.

 

#4 Apoorva Goel Claimed the First ACOP Title for India

Yes, this took some time coming but we finally have an Indian ACOP champion. Apoorva Goel was the last player standing at Asian Champion of Poker (ACOP) Event 3 – HKD $11K 6-Max event in Oct’13 and brought home the first ACOP trophy won by an Indian player.

“I feel very happy, very good and it still feels like a dream” said an excited Goel after winning the event for HKD $288,100 (~₹23 Lakhs). The 30-year old businessman added, “I was a bit upset my aces got cracked but (then) I won my first tournament title with the aces! It was a really long heads up battle. My Aces got cracked twice when I would have won the tournament.. But I kept taking down small pots to regain the chip lead every time and finally took it down with Aces. Was lucky to pick up some big hands also. It feels great to win!”

Apoorva Goel
Apoorva Goel

The slowdown of tournaments in Goa has fueled Indian participation in major Asian tournaments and the most popular among them have been the MPC and ACOP events at PokerStars Live poker room in Macau!

PokerStars LIVE has become the new breeding ground for Indian poker talent and many such talents emerged in 2013. Notable mentions here are Sailesh Lohia (7th place finish in the MPC main event in Apr’13), Amit Ajwani (winner of MPC event 4 in Apr’13) and Dhaval Mudgal.

Sailesh Lohia
Sailesh Lohia
Amit Ajwani
Amit Ajwani

Read the complete story here.

 

#5 An eventful WSOP for Team India

This list would not be complete without the mention of the 2013 WSOP. Never before has team India made so much noise at such a large stage as they did at this years` WSOP. The action packed schedule of 63 events including the main event was definitely one of the biggest events of the year and a host of Indian players made sure that railbirds in India were kept busy.

Rahul Byrraju got the party started with his 20th place finish in event#56 and followed it up with another class act in event#58 by placing 52nd. Several Indians ran deep in the event which is every poker players dream i.e. WSOP main event. Pulkit Kalia,Apoorva Goel and Aditya ‘intervention’ Agarwal all made deep runs but the one who chased this dream the longest was team mentor Aditya ‘Intervention’ Agarwal. Aditya reached the 5th day of the main event finally busting in 212th place with KJ vs 99 for $42,990!

Aditya Agarwal
Aditya Agarwal
Rahul Byrraju
Rahul Byrraju

Read the complete story here.

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