Online poker’s biggest presence is unquestionably, PokerStars. Ever since fairy-tale WSOP main event champ Chris Moneymaker qualified via a PokerStars satellite, things have gone from strength to strength. The infamous UIGEA has only served to strengthen their dominance of the market, steadfastly ignoring it while many of their competitors withdrew from the U.S.
Since Moneymaker there have been a raft of WSOP winners, and PokerStars has made a point of signing up as many of them as possible. Greg Raymer in 2004, and Joe Hachem in 2005 both joined their predecessor at PokerStars, and now the most recent poker World Champion has netted a place among that illustrious crowd. Inaugural November Nine victor Peter Eastgate has officially signed on as a PokerStars Pro. He is accompanied by the man who he beat heads up in last year’s tournament, Ivan Demidov.
Hailing from Denmark, Eastgate began to show his tournament credentials in 2007 when he notched up two EPT cashes along with a final table at the Irish Open. All of his previous achievements were eclipsed, however, when he finished top of the pile at last year’s World Series. His $9,152,416 windfall came along with the record as the youngest ever main event winner. At 22 years old, he broke a record set by a certain Mr. Hellmuth in 1989. Since this victory, he has demonstrated his ability by winning a $5000 event at the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure and beating 2007 runner up Andy Bloch in the first round of the National Heads Up Poker Championship.
Demidov is another European import, this time from Russia. His second place finish in the main event was an extremely impressive achievement, but it was his performance at the WSOP Europe that has really established his name. In the break before the final table commenced in November 2008, Demidov went to London to compete in the second annual WSOPE. His place among poker’s elite was confirmed when he became the first ever player to reach the final table in both the WSOP and the WSOPE main events.
The pair will join up with their November Nine compatriots Ylon Schwartz and Dennis Phillips on Team PokerStars, along with high class players such as Daniel Negreanu, Barry Greenstein, and Vanessa Rousso. They will play under the monikers ‘PeteEastgate’ and ‘Ivan Demidov.’