We're three days away from the start of the World Series of Poker, and more players are expressing interest in the $1 million buy-in Big One for One Drop. They better hurry and register, because the list of entrants is nearing the 48-player cap. We're bringing you that story and more in this edition of the Nightly Turbo.
In Case You Missed It
In 2011, John Riordan became the youngest person ever to win a WSOP Circuit event. This year, Riordan is featured as a player to watch in our 2012 WSOP Rookie Roundup
Is Bertrand "ElkY" Grospellier in danger of losing the top spot on the Global Poker Index? Mickey Doft breaks down the biggest movers and shakers on the GPI this week.
Nine players were left standing after Day 5 of the World Poker Tour World Championship. Marvin Rettenmaier led the way, bug Michael Mizrachi was still eyeing his third WPT title.
The $100,000 buy-in WPT High Roller event kicked off at Bellagio on Wednesday. Justin Bonomo led the stacked field after Day 1.
Eric "E-Fro" Froelich is a two-time WSOP bracelet winner with more than $2 million in WSOP earnings. Froelich joined the latest Strategy with Kristy podcast to discuss WSOP satellite strategy, as well as buying and selling pieces of players in an event.
The latest web comic of The Micros was released on Thursday. You can find it over at The Muck.
Big One for One Drop Gets Tougher
High-stakes online cash player Jens "Jeans89" Kyllönen is the latest poker pro to throw his hat in the ring for the $1 million buy-in Big One for One Drop at this summer's World Series of Poker.
Kyllönen, one of the biggest winners on PokerStars this year, told Pokerisivut.com that he intends to put up the entire buy-in himself but may sell some shares as the event gets closer. Players are required to post a $50,000 deposit upon registering for the event, after which the complete buy-in fee must be settled two weeks before the day of the event.
"Basically I had a good amount of winnings from this year, and I decided to go for this once in a lifetime opportunity, said Kyllönen."The list of players seems very nice, and the charity aspect brings a nice extra value to the tournament. The most important reason for me to play this tournament is, however, the chance to take the lead from Juha Helppi in the Finnish all-time money list."
In addition to the 30 players who have confirmed their participation for the event, players like Phil Hellmuth, Antonio Esfandiari, Sam Trickett and Andrew Robl have expressed interest putting up the seven-figure buy-in. Unfortunately, the World Series of Poker says it will not release an updated list of confirmations until next month. During the May 9 conference call with the media, WSOP Executive Director Ty Stewart said the total number of confirmed participants was around 40. The event will be capped at 48 players with no exceptions.
Read more at HighStakesDB.com.
Good News, Mate
Efforts to legalize online poker in Australia are reportedly in the works, according to several news reports from Down Under this week.
According to the Daily Telegraph, the Australian government has informed the gaming industry that legislation to allow online poker and sports betting could be applied in the next six to 12 months. From there, sources believe that online poker will be introduced on a five-year trial period.
The newspaper said it has obtained documents showing that the government had briefed the Australian gaming industry. The Telegraph also published an email sent by Merrill Lynch gaming analyst Mark Bryan to his clients which briefed them about the government's plans.
"In-play live online betting: Many in the industry indicated that they expect this to be legalized alongside poker in the next six-12 months following overseas precedents," Bryan wrote. "It seems (Communications Minister) Stephen Conroy's department recently provided a brief on draft legislation."
Online gambling has been illegal in Australia since the activity first burst onto the scene in the mid-1990s, but offshore sites have been able to work around Australian legislation. Companies providing online real-money online gambling could face a fine of more than a million dollars under the 2001 Interactive Gambling Act, but no charges have been made in more than a decade since the law was enforced.
Read more at the Daily Telegraph.
Betfair Settles with Spain
Spain has now raised more than €60 million in back taxes from online gambling companies seeking licenses to operate in Spain when the new market opens next month.
Betfair announced Wednesday that it "has satisfied all requirements set out by the tax authorities and will be making a payment of not more than €10 million." Paying off the retroactive taxes puts Betfair near the front of the line when Spanish licenses are granted.
"Betfair expects to be awarded a license covering its sportsbook and certain casino products and intends to apply for a poker license shortly thereafter," the company said in a statement. "Under the terms of the licences, operators will pay a Gross Gaming Revenue tax of 25% on Spanish operations — a tax that Betfair has already been paying since May 2011 when Spain’s new gambling act was introduced.
On Monday, bwin.party agreed to pay up to €33.6 million in back taxes to the Spanish Tax Ministry. Sportingbet announced one day later that it will make a payment of €14 million plus surcharges and interest of up to €3.2 million. PokerStars, 888 and bet365 are expected to follow before the new market opens.
Read more at Betfair.com.
We're so glad TwoPlusTwo is back. On Thursday, forum member Ricepaw1226 posted a hilarious animated .gif that includes cameo appearances from some of TwoPlusTwo's most popular Photoshops.
For some laughs, check out the full thread at TwoPlusTwo.com.
Welcome to Punta del Este
The PokerStars Latin American Poker Tour is in Punta del Este this week. Didn't get a chance to go? Here's Lynn Gilmartin taking in the sights and showing you what you're missing.