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Poker News | World Poker News

2011 World Poker Tour Premier League Poker

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The upcoming season of Premier League Poker will make its appearance in 2011 sporting a new name - World Poker Tour® Premier League Poker. World Poker Tour® and Matchroom Sport recently announced the new name and changes in the Premier League Poker format.  Presented by, the event will be filmed for multi-episode broadcast in Europe and take place in 2011. Included in the changes are the number of players, the field will grow from 12 to 16; and presenting sponsor has contributed $250,000 plus a $25,500 seat into the $125,000 buy-in 2012 WPT® World Championship putting the total prize pool at $2,275,000.

"WPT and Premier League Poker both represent top class poker competition and high quality television," said Steve Heller, CEO of World Poker Tour. "The Premier League structure is one of the most unique in the world. WPT has always been an innovator, and this is a perfect fit."

Special Event Tournament designed for the elite

World Poker Tour® Premier League Poker is a tournament for some of poker's most well known players. Previous players include past champions Juha Helppi, Andy Black, David Benyamine, and JC Tran; and top pros Phil Hellmuth, Daniel Negreanu, Phil Laak, Roland de Wolfe and Vanessa Rousso. The pros will also face off against qualifiers fielded exclusively by These qualifiers have proven they have what it takes to be at the elite tournament. Last year, online entrant Giovanni Safina finished third, and had a very good shot at winning the event.

WPT Season IX Player of the Year invited will also extend an open invitation into the elite event for the WPT Season IX Player of the Year, currently a neck and neck race between Wall Street derivatives trader turned poker pro Andy Frankenberger and online superstar Vivek Rajkumar, who recently final tabled two consecutive WPT events. Frankenberger and Rajkumar may be running neck and neck but they are far from having a lock on the race. Other pros that are within striking distance are Antonio Esfandiari, Dwyte Pilgrim and Randall Flowers.

Special event status

Because the World Poker Tour Premier League Poker's is a special event status tournament, no Player of the Year points will be awarded in this invitation-only event.

Eddie Hearn, Managing Director of Matchroom Sport, creators of Premier League Poker, said, "I'm delighted that Premier League Poker is now a World Poker Tour special event. This association not only gives Premier League Poker extra credibility amongst players and guarantees them extensive global coverage, it also cements the winner as one of poker’s true greats when he or she joins the ranks of WPT Champions."

Kara Scott will present the World Poker Tour Premier League Poker. Look for dates and the location for the World Poker Tour Premier League Poker to be announced in the near future.

Learn more about WPT Premier League Poker and other WPT events at

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