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Live the Vegas Dream with Ladbrokes Poker!

LATEST NEWS: Freeroll your way to Vegas! Every Monday at 22:30 we will be holding a freeroll where 10 players will guarantee their seat into Tuesday’s daily final at 19:30. Register your place now! Go to Tournaments/Special in the lobby.

In 2008, our dream was to create the largest European Team to compete in the WSOP Main Event and hopefully bring the title of World Champion back to Europe. We succeeded.

120 players representing Ladbrokes competed in the 2008 WSOP Main Event, with 12 players making the money, including Team Captain Steve Davis who cashed for second time in 3 years.

This year, our dream is to give as many poker players as possible the opportunity to go to Las Vegas, be part of the World’s biggest poker event, play poker in some of the world’s most famous card rooms, enjoy the Vegas nightlife in true Ladbrokes style and hopefully deliver a European winner for a second consecutive year.

200 runners battled it out on Sunday night in the $25k Added Vegas Dream Satellite. 8 packages were up for grabs along with Vegas Dream Weekly Final bounty’s on both skalie and Steve Davis.

Vallum_ bagged himself both a package and also managed to knock out Laddies Sponsored Pro skalie, gaining him a seat into this weeks Weekly Final this Thursday and the possibility of winning another package. beermoney also succeeded by knocking out our Vegas Dream Captain, Steve ‘fivek’ Davis to secure his seat into this weeks Weekly Final – so good luck to beermoney & Vallum_!

The_Derv who is certainly no stranger to enjoying the Team Ladbrokes experience in Vegas had previously won a package and managed to win yet another package in this tournament!

Congratulations to all those who won a package:


So make sure you don’t miss this great opportunity!!

The Grand Final – Monte Carlo, Monaco – Never Again… – By Andreas Hoivold (Norwegian Sponsored Pro)

This seasons Grand Final of the EPT’s was about to start in Monte Carlo. This is the richest tournament in Europe. This year 935 runners paid 10.600 Euros each. The first price was insane – 2.3 million Euros! 88th place, the last place, netted 20.000 Euros.

The structure for this tournament was a new one. We started with 30.000 chips and the blind levels were 75 minutes. The first level we started on was 50/100 (no 25/50 level). I liked all of these changes. They also had to add one extra day to finish the tournament.

I started playing on a table that was ok. But it didn’t take long before the table was broken (our table was the first to break). My new table was one I didn’t like. The players were generally very good, and I didn’t get any cards. The most famous player at my new table was Chad Brown. He played very solid poker without doing any crazy stuff (as far as I could see). Most of the players, in fact: all but one re-raised a lot. Very often only 3 or 4 players do this on a normal day 1-table. After playing in San Remo, where the players were really weak, this was a change. And the change was not for the better.

I played good poker for a few hours. I won a lot of small pots, all without a showdown. My stack was up to 38,000 half way through the day and I was very happy with my stack.

We played at 200/400 blinds when I got J-10 off in the cut-off position (the one before the button). I raised to 1,000. The small blind, an aggressive American re-raised to 3.000. This player was a player that re-raised a lot and he had showed a few bluffs. I had a feeling he wasn’t too strong, so I ended up calling his re-raise. The flop was 10-8-3 rainbow. He bet out 3.500. I felt he was weak and raised to 10.000. He folded quite quickly.  I was very happy with the pot and I now had 49.000 chips. Everything looked good!

But after this pot nothing went my way. I didn’t hit any flops, and I started to play quite bad. In the last level of the day I didn’t play one single hand. The best hand I had was K-10 off, but I hate the hand and didn’t want to play it.

I ended day 1 with a quite small stack that was around 1/3 of the average – 19.400 to be exact.

Of course I wasn’t too happy with this. But the blinds on day two should start at 500/1000. I had almost 20 big blinds which I felt was no stress.

On day two I started on a table with a couple of known names. Among them were Ted Lawson and Phil Laak. But the table was weaker than both my day 1 tables.

I had a lucky double-up early on with A-Q against Ted Lawson’s A-K. I had a new double up with A-K against Q-Q. After this I had about 84.000. Now I could start to play poker again!

I continued to build my stack. Now I did it without showdowns and I was not too happy when they broke my table. I was moved to a new table with players that were unknown to me. I was a bit surprised when the guy next to me started talking to me in Norwegian. What? A Norwegian I did not know? His name was Jan Bjørsland and he had qualified online to the tournament. We had a nice chat about everything and nothing.

This table was quite tight, but one player was opening about 40 percent of the pots, Frenchman Ludovic Lacay. He played too aggressive and I really wanted to play with him.
In Ludovic’s big blind I raised to 5k (blinds 1k/2k – 200 ante) with Q-9 of spades. Both the small blind and the big blind called. The flop was A-5 of spades and 3 of diamonds. It was check around to me, and I bet 8k. The small blind folded and Lacay called. To be honest I would prefer if he folded. To take down the pot there would be perfectly nice for me. But the call isn’t too bad news. I could end up winning a bigger pot! The turn was the king of diamonds. Lacay checked again. I bet 18k. He called instantly. If the first call was ok, this one wasn’t. I really wanted him to fold here. The river was the jack of diamonds making it a possible diamond flush with the table.

Lacay checked again. Of course I could give up the pot now. I guess I should have done that. Not this time, though. I bet out 33k. Lacay used about 30 seconds before he folded. Phew! Scary!

After this hand I didn’t play any big hands before I got moved to another table. I arrived at the new table with 180k and I was really happy with the way things were going.

My new table had a couple of well known players: “Miami” John Cernuto from USA and Marcel Luske from Holland. Both players have won almost 4 million dollars in tournaments – each. And both of them are, of course, really, really good players. I was really looking forward to playing here.

From the first hand I got good cards. The first hand I had was A-Q of clubs. I raised and everyone folded. I showed the hand and told them that this was my minimum raising hand. Of course everyone believed me! After I had raised, or re-raised 5 of the 8 next hands, I had built my stack up to 230k. This was almost too easy.

The rest of the day I didn’t play my best game. I was a bit tired and I slowed down. I was quite happy with my stack and played a bit too carefully in the end of day two. I ended the day with 239k and I was really happy about it! Going from 19k to 239k in one day is kind of nice!

When day 3 started we were 139 players left. 88 players were going to get paid, so that was the first goal.

My starting table was quite good. The most famous player was for sure Joe Hachem from Australia. He won the WSOP Main Event in 2005 and he has won more than 10 million dollars in tournaments! Not bad!

After a quiet start I changed gears in the end of the first level. I re-raised Joe Hachem no less than three times. I think he was kind of annoyed, but he still smiled and joked about it. He suggested a deal where he took chips from the rest of the table and gave them to me. I replied that if it was ok for the rest of the table I could accept the deal. Everyone at the tabled smiled.

I won almost every pot I played now. I didn’t do anything wrong. Poker felt like the easiest game in the world. My stack was now 400k and everything looked good.

A new player on my table was Luca Pagano. He is one of the best on the circuit. He is also the player with the highest number of cash prices in EPT’s. And more important: He is a really nice and smiling guy!

On blinds 3k/6k (500 ante) it was a raise from the button in my big blind to 15k. The small blind called. I looked down at to black queens and re-raised to 60k. The button moved all-in for 122k and the small blind folded. The button had A-K. I was a small favorite, but this is the typical coinflip. I guess you can call it the most classic race in poker – queens against big slick. No help for him on the flop, turn or river. I won another pot and I had a really good feeling.

At the first break of the day I had 583k. I was bubbling inside!

Bubbling was also the next thing in the tournament. Very soon after the break, we were down to 89 players. I was kind of active during the bubble play. Luca Pagano asked if I could write a book about how to play on the bubble in EPT’s. I smiled and asked if he could write a book about how to play EPT’s in general. I hoped that the bubble would last for a couple of weeks, but of course that didn’t happen. The bubble broke and so did my table.

My new table didn’t look too dangerous. But in the seat to my right was Ludovic Lacay. He was still very, very active. Stupidly I would not let him continue with this.

He raised, as usual, to 20k (blinds 4k/8k, 500 ante). I had pocket 8’s. I re-raised to 55k. He re-raised again to 160k. Now I should have folded. End of story. But as I was going to fold my stupid mouth said “all-in” What th f…? I should fold! He instantly called – with aces. No help for me and I was out. From almost 650k in chips and double average stack to being out. In one hand! I was so disappointed with myself I almost could not breathe. I don’t know what happened, but I hated the move and I hated myself for doing it! Sigh.

The consolation of a 3rd cash of 4 played EPT’s didn’t help at all. It felt really bad! I left the casino without picking up my money. Inside I was exploding. What was I thinking???

Well, now it has been a few days. I still feel bad, but I try to tell myself that this will never happen again and that I have learned a lesson.

This spring has been a good one. I started with a final table in the GUKPT in Brighton (4th). I continued with a 12th and 13th place in the EPT’s in Copenhagen and Dortmund. After that, I won the Norwegian H.O.R.S.E. championship in Nottingham, and now I cashed in Monte Carlo. Hopefully it will not end here!