Monday, 4 May 2009


By Mick McCloskey

At this time of year many Poker Europa readers will have plans, or will be making plans, for the annual WSOP marathon in Las Vegas. The bracelet events start at the end of May and continue through to the main event in July. Apart from the changes to the actual tournaments this year, there has been an important change made involving your travel arrangements since last year. Since January, anyone travelling to the USA on the visa waiver program, which includes citizens of most European countries, has a new hurdle to clear before they set off on their travels. Anyone intending to travel to the USA is required to complete an online application to enter the country, a few weeks before they travel. The online form is basically the same as the old green form you would normally complete during your journey and hand to the officer at immigration. Details are required regarding your nationality, your passport details and the address you are staying at during your visit to the USA. It also requires you to answer the usual questions about past criminal convictions, links to terrorism, moral turpitude, whatever that is, etc, etc. I have just completed my own application and I can report that the whole process is pretty simple and that I had my application approved straight away. It does state though, that this approval does not guarantee your entry to the USA and the final decision lies with the immigration officer at the point of entry. To complete the application, log onto the ESTA (Electronic System for Travel Authorisation) website at
To everyone heading over to try their luck in Vegas, I wish you all the best of luck and I will, hopefully, be meeting up with friends, old and new, during my own trip. See you there!


The action is all done and dusted for another year and my tournament report can be read in another part of the magazine. The action has also been captured on camera by Win Media Ireland Ltd and condensed into a series of eight one hour shows for television. The first of these shows will be broadcast on the Irish TV channel TG4 at 11.30pm on Wednesday 6th May and every Wednesday night for the following 7 weeks. It is also due to be broadcast in the UK on ITV4, starting on Sunday 17th May at 00.30.


The poker community showed it’s generosity in back to back events in Dublin recently. First, the Fitzwilliam Club hosted a tournament for Touch Ireland and helped to raise €14,000 for that cause. The following weekend, also in Dublin, sponsored the Poker for the Homeless March Madness festival at the Jackpot Club. Former Miss World, Rosanna Davidson, broadcaster, Eamonn Dunphy and Snooker legend, Ken Doherty launched the festival on Friday 27th March and helped raise €10,000 for that cause.
Padraig Parkinson, ambassador for Poker for the Homeless said, “It’s fantastic to see such great support for this weekend and we’d like to thank everyone who played and helped organise this weekend.”
Well done to everyone involved in both events.


Green Joker Poker presents the inaugural European Short Handed Poker Championships at the Ballsbridge Hotel, Dublin from 4th to 7th June. All tournaments and cash games will be played 6 handed. The main event has a buy-in of €1,000 + 100, a 20,000 starting stack with 60 minute levels and a €150,000 guaranteed prize pot. Green Joker Poker are currently running online satellites for seats to this event. All side events will also have a 20,000 starting stack. Full details can be found on the Green Joker Poker website.


Congratulations to Martin Silke, from Co. Mayo, on his victory in the £1,500 main event of the Grosvenor UK Poker Tour at the Victoria Casino in London at the end of March. Martin overcame a quality field of 398 to record his first major victory and picked up the top prize of £172,850. It’s just a pity for Martin that the English pound is not worth nearly as much as it used to be but, I’m sure he probably won’t be too bothered by that.

If you have any news, views or events, you can contact me by email to

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