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SHE'S a self-confessed poker obsessive who became the first woman to win a European Poker Tour title, scooping a cool £500,000.
But now Vicky Coren has spoken about the new love of her life, fiancé David Mitchell - who she admits knows NOTHING about the game.
''One poker obsessive in a relationship is enough,'' said the 39 year old.
''David may have played in a celebrity event in the past, but he does not really play now.''
TV and radio presenter Vicky and Peep Show star David announced their surprise engagement last month.
The EPT London poker champion said she was overwhelmed at the reaction of fans, particularly her many thousands of Twitter followers.
''I was very touched that people were so nice about it,'' said Vicky, who is also author of the top-selling poker memoir, For Richer, For Poorer.
''We haven't set a date yet, but we are going to get married - we're not going to be one of those couples who wait 10 years.''

THE Grosvenor UK Poker Tour is underway at Coventry's G Casino - and already promises to be one of the best Midland events of the year.

A three day Main Event starts on Friday with a buy-in of £1,000 which is sure to attract a host of top names.

If it's a sell out, then players could be looking at a mouth-watering £400,000 prize pool.

But for those with a few less chips in their pocket, a series of tasty-looking side events are also scheduled for the Fifth Leg of the prestigious national tour.

For a full list of side events, or to find out more, visit http://bit.ly/omA1ig

THERE are big poker tournaments - and then there's The GOLIATH.

The GUKPT event is taking place at Coventry's Ricoh Arena this week and hopes to attract a record field of 1,600 for the £100 (£20) main event.

Running from the 24th to 28th August at the home of Coventry City Football Club, the Goliath has a £100,000 Guaranteed Prize Pool.

Yet to come out on top players will have to make it through three days of hard play against some of the best in Europe.

With every entrant into the tournament, 25% of the registration fee goes to Marie Curie Cancer Care, who are a charity partner to both the Coventry City Football Club and Grosvenor Casinos.

Also, should you run into a horrific bad beat and bust out earlier than you anticipated, in the Goliath tournament you have the chance to re-enter on the next day!

And as well as individual cash prizes being on offer, the event is also staging a simultaneous Team Challenge for those taking part with their buddies.

For more details of how to qualify or register online or to read more about the main and side events, visit Grosvenor UK Poker Tour


HE won the San Remo European Poker Tour title last month - and pocketed a cool £828,000.

Now former Warwick Uni student Rupert Elder, 24, has the poker world at his feet.

The economics graduate gave an exclusive Q&A interview to this blog after his amazing win which has catapulted him into the big time.


Q. When did you first start playing poker and why did you take it up?

A. In 6th form when I was 16 or 17, I just really enjoyed it and I liked the idea of gambling.

2. How well were you doing in those early days?

A. Terribly, for maybe the first 3 years I played I was definitely a losing player at small stakes.

Q. What did you study at Warwick Uni? Before poker came along, what did you see as your future career?

A. I studied Economics but I use studied in the loosest way possible since I spent a lot of time playing poker and only ended up with a pass degree. I wanted to be a programmer or a trader but after applying to jobs no one wanted me.

Q. When did you turn pro - and what did your family think of your decision?

A. After graduating, they were fine with it but I think my dad always hopes that I will one day get a "real" job.

Q. Going into San Remo, did you feel you had a good chance of winning? Was your form good?

So I'm down to the final 10 in the £100 Bounty tournament at the GUKPT at Grosvenor Walsall Casino.

But only the top eight players are getting paid - and I'm card dead.

I'm also stuck in the middle of the two chip leaders, so the chance of stealing blinds are looking slimmer than slim.

But as I'm about seventh in chips, I decide to continue to bide my time and squeeze into the money before unleashing my all-ins.

Big mistake!

Within twenty minutes two players are gone and there are now eight of us left. My plan seems to be working and the pounds-signs are flashing...

I'm now about sixth/seventh in chips with a 25,000 stack - about half the average. Trouble is, blinds are now 1,200 and 2,400 with antes at 200 - and rising fast.

But there is hope.

One player is so short stacked I know he will have to push in before me.

I wait, and wait, and wait, but my chips are just dribbling away.

Eventually, he pushes and turns over pockets fives to his opponents 10/9. Yes!

A coin flip and if this comes down on my side I'm guaranteed £200 for seventh, rising to more than £1,300 for first place.

But, of course, the fives hold up.

A few hands later another short-stack goes in and gets called by my big-blind neighbour.

But my heart sinks when the shortster turns over bullets and his chipped-up opponent turns over a pair of tens. Of course the aces hold.

Eventually, with just a pitiful 7,000 left I'm forced to push with A6 - the best hand I've seen in about an hour and a half.

I get two callers - one of then AJ, which hits the Jack on the flop, sending me bubbling to the rail.

I pocketed one £25 bounty from the event but gained much more in experience in how NOT to play the short stack at the final table.

Of course I should have been pushing with my chips with any two cards much earlier, and not allowed myself to be blinded out so pathetically.

This was an excellent GUKPT tournament and I did play well to get to the final table. But I'm gutted to have flopped so badly when I really felt a big win was possible.

Lesson learned...

* For a full list of results at the GUKPT Walsall leg, visit http://www.grosvenorukpokertour.com/


IT'S 5.15am and the exhaustion is kicking in.

More than eight hours of play of the £300 side event at Nottingham UKIPT has come down to this moment.

A field of 164 has been whittled down to 29, and I'm facing the last hand before the tournie ends for the day, to be continued tomorrow.

Sitting on a half decent stack of 36,000 chips - compared to the average of 54,000 - I have no intention of playing this final hand, especially when the early position chip leader puts in a raise on the 600/1,200 blinds to 2,600.

But then I look down and see AK.

The rest of the players fold like a second hand deckchair... and it is down to me in the small blind.

Then the mistakes began.

SHE'S known as the Iron Maiden because of a ruthless poker playing style which saw her win a £1 million event.

But Liv Boeree, 26, has revealed a softer side by admitting she once cried after crushing an opponent - on hit TV quiz, GoldenBalls.

The former astrophysicist became a world superstar in the male-dominated sport after winning a European Poker Tour (EPT) tournament in San Remo last year, scooping the seven figure prize.

Now Liv - who played a top Midlands poker event last weekend - has revealed how one of her first cash wins on Jasper Carrot's GoldenBalls held bittersweet memories.

''I made it through to the final where you have to decide to 'steal' or 'split' the jackpot,'' she recalled.

''Anyone who knows anything about game theory knows that the only option you can really go for is steal, because if you choose split and they choose steal you go away with nothing.

''My opponent chose split, so I won the money (£6,500) - but I felt terrible afterwards and actually cried.

''In poker you can do a deal with opponents at a final table, but on that show we were taken off to different areas, so that was not an option.''

It's that determined streak that has seen Liv rise to the top of the poker scene in just a few years, so far earning an astonishing $2,000,000 in winnings.

HE had been losing nosebleed amounts in the last few weeks.

But now Viktor Blom - aka Isildur1 - has turned things around in spectacular fashion by banking an astonishing $640,000 in just three days on PokerStars.

The heads-up specialist played his SuperStar Showdown match against Daniel Cates on Sunday night and scooped more than $50,000.

And then things really took off for the Team PokerStars member..

IT'S the day that Prince William and Kate Middleton tie the knot in the biggest Royal Wedding since Charles and Di.

But another hotly anticipated spectacular takes place on April 29 that will also include a fair few Kings and Queens - the Grosvenor UK Poker Tour Main Event, at Walsall's Grosvenor Casino!

While the rest of the country will be following the royal pair on TV, the best poker players in the Midlands and beyond will be hoping to see their own royal flushes at the annual event.

A series of tournies will run from April 25 to May 1, with a big turnout expected on the first day in the £100 NLH Freezeout, which carries a £10,000 guaranteed prize pot.

Watch this space for more details about GUKPT Walsall....

But for a full run-down of the 2011 legs, visit UK Poker News.

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