Ok so you go to your local pub go to the bar order your favorite tipple and take a seat in front of the TV which is currently showing live horse racing.
You turn around to see who else is there before settling down to have 5 mins with the news paper,
On looking around you notice four men in the corner of the room with more than £ 40 on the pool table as they are playing for £ 10 a man per frame judi online.
In the opposite corner you see four similar looking men sat around a piece of green cloth with what looks like connect4 coins in front of them and on the ledge under the table you notice a glass with the same £ 40 in it.
You stroll over to see the four men playing cards as pool does not interest you and you are not very good at it and they must be good as they are wagering £ 10 each.
You ask to pull up a seat at the card table and watch for about 5-10 minutes before asking to join as “This looks easy it’s all luck not like the pool where you need to be able to play”.
Within 5 minutes of sitting down you are already reaching into your pocket to get out another £ 5 as you have already been fleeced out of your first initial buy-in. “Ah that’s OK though that bloke just got lucky on me he must have had good cards to bet that much all the time”
But did he ?? Or was he using the same type of skill that was needed by the pool players to win their money?
This is the underlying question isn’t it?
I have been playing poker now in league’s casino’s and home games for over 4 years and the amount of people who don’t play or understand poker have uttered the immortal words “I could beat you at poker it’s easy its all about who has the best cards “is unbelievable.
In my opinion these are the same people who write the laws on Public House / Private member Club Poker Gambling restrictions.
£ 5 in 24 hours per player with a maximum of £ 100 pay out for Pub’s & £ 10 in 24 hours with a maximum of £ 250 pay out for private members clubs, what a joke.
If you were playing pool, bingo, the tote or on the one arm bandit you could wager a full weeks wages in less than an hour, but if you want to use your whit your skill and your ability to play poker against other like minded people unless you go to a casino, every time you open the cards and place more than your £ 5 or £ 10 on the table you are immediately breaking the law.
It always gets mentioned but I will repeat it for the sake of this article “How come we always see the same faces at the final tables” Daniel Negranu has just proven this with his second final table at the WSOPE in 2 years and the same with 2008 WSOP runner up Ivan Demidov reaching the final table of both the WSOP & WSOPE in the space of a few months, Dennis Phillips last years final table appearance at the WSOP and a great deep run at this years event. These people are not lucky yes they have had to catch a few lucky cards here and there and win a few coin flips along the way but they are skilful at what they do and keep doing so well through there knowledge and understanding of the game not by pure luck.
I think that the government really need to look at this and as long as the games are run fairly and league nights are run honestly and openly then poker should be treated as just as much as a game of skill as any other sport or game. And the restrictions should be raised to allow a better standard of play throughout the poker playing community without having to break the bank or the law.
How about our MPs looking at raising the stakes not to silly amounts but to a reasonable price where players will take it more serious and a higher standard of play will be reached along the way.
The amount of people who do well at pub leagues but then completely bust out when going to the casino is due to the massive gulf in the standard of play.
We need to look at getting the Games raised to a min on £ 20 per 24 hours with a max pay out of £ 500 for pubs and £ 35 and a max pay out of £ 750 for private members clubs.
Any Political party who take this line during the upcoming elections will surely be getting my vote.
And I hope that all players within the UK poker community will join me.
Posted by Gerry Poltorak.