Ask any poker player to pick a European venue, and Amsterdam will be amongst the favorites. Curiously, none of the big three live tournament operators: European Poker Tour (EPT), World Poker Tour (WPT), or World Series of Poker (WSOP) have ever set up camp in the liberal land.
That just changed.
Adam Pliska and the team at the WPT are heading to the capital of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, and they are planning to stick around for quite a while.
WPT officials, and their counterparts at Holland Casino, have inked an exclusive deal that will see them host WPT Main Events, and WPT National Series Events, in the Netherlands, through 2019.
It’s a crucial deal for the WPT, who often play second fiddle to the EPT when it comes to domination of the European live tournament market. It’s all about location, location, location, and Amsterdam in particular will go down a storm with the traveling poker circus.
They won’t have to wait long.
Cards in the Air
The inaugural WPT Amsterdam Main Event will kick off 11 May, with the festival proper beginning on 8 May. There will be eight events in total, with buy-ins ranging from €330 to €6,000. The highlight reel includes a €330 Warm Up event, €6,000 High Roller (unlimited re-entry) and the €3,300 Main Event (single re-entry per day). There will also be regular €330 live satellites for the Main Event running on a daily basis.
WPT President Adam Pliska said, “We are proud to announce our partnership with Holland Casino, and to bring both the WPT Main Tour and the WPT National Tour to two world-class properties in the Netherlands. The Dutch have a rich history in poker, including various final table appearances on the World Poker Tour, and we look forward to creating more memories with top professionals and aspiring players alike over the next four years.”
The Amsterdam experience ends on 16 May, but the WPT returns to the Netherlands in September with the WPT National Series event in Valkenburg. The festival begins 30 Sep, with a €1,500 High Roller event, and that’s immediately followed by a €750 buy-in Main Event.
“We are delighted with the fact that the WPT Main Tour is coming to Holland Casino Amsterdam. After the first alliance for a WPT National in Valkenburg last year, it is the first time that the WPT Main Tour is in Holland, and therefore an important moment”, commented Holland Casino CEO Willem-Jan van den Dijssel. “WPT is one of the largest poker tours and a premier name in international poker. We are proud to host the tournament and are convinced that it will take poker to a higher level in the Netherlands.”
The relationship between the pair started in the summer of 2014 when Niels van Leeuwen defeated a final table that included Marcel Luske (3rd) and Joep van den Bijgaart (5th) to take the first prize of €40,000 in the inaugural WPT National Valkenburg Main Event.
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[Photo Credit at top by worldpokertour.com]