The Brits came out on top at the Poker Nations Cup, held in Cardiff, Wales this month. This unusual poker tournament pits national teams against each other.
Each team consists of 5 poker pros plus 1 online qualifier who gets to play alongside the experts. Competing teams in this yearâ€™s tournament were UK, Denmark, USA, Ireland, Sweden and Germany. This is a great opportunity for online poker players to get involved in a major tournament and learn a thing or two from well-travelled players.
Each player plays one game and earns points for their countryâ€™s team. Buy-in is $5,000 per player, with $100,000 added to the prize pool by the organisers.
The British team took first place at the Poker Nations Cup with a team including Neil Channing â€“ winner of the recent Irish Open, Roland De Wolfe (team captain), Joe Beevers, Ian Frazer, Surinder Sunar and online qualifier Charlie Durbin. The total prize pool was $280,000 of which $100,000 went to the first prize team.
The team captain is an important role since he must choose which players to play in the grand final and can call a time-out for strategy discussions.
The Irish team came a close second with a strong performance, winning $30,000. Last yearâ€™s winners, Sweden, participated with a strong contingent, while the USA team included Chris Ferguson and TV host and poker fan Montel Williams. Since US law forbids online poker, no qualifier could be included, which is why the American team plumped for a celebrity player. Montel is a seasoned player and took part in the WSOP Main Event in 2007.
The annual tournament is televised and will be broadcast on Channel Four. It is the only poker tournament of its kind that has players participating as a team, which adds a new dimension to what is usually an individual game.