It's been another busy week of poker in the United Kingdom and Ireland and you're in the right place if you want to learn all about it. Why? Because this is the weekly UK & Ireland PokerNews Round-Up, that's why.
It's not uncommon for people who work in the online poker industry to have a soft spot for playing the game, which is certainly true of the now former bwinparty Director of Poker, Jeffrey Haas, who won the DT38 Foundation Charity Tournament — the opening event of the 2015 WPT National London festival — last weekend.
Speaking of which, the £100,000 guaranteed Main Event was won by Irina Nikolaidi, who became the tour's first-ever female champion.
Keeping with the partypoker theme, news broke that it has scrapped a number of processing fees associated with popular withdrawal methods. Being charged to withdraw via bank transfer and debits cards has long been a major gripe with partypoker's customers, but many methods are now completely free to deposit and withdrawal.
In addition to Haas and Nikolaidi winning live events, Stephen Foster became the latest in a long line of Grosvenor UK Poker Tour (GUKPT) champions when he emerged victorious in the Leeds Main Event. Foster was joined at the final by two well-known and talented individuals in the shape of Luke Fields and Richard Hawes , but both fell halfway through proceedings.
More live poker now and news that PokerStars finally returned to Bristol for a UKIPT festival after a two-year absence. At time of writing, only Day 1a had been completed and it was Javed Ullah who claimed the early initiative, finishing the first flight as the tournament's chip leader.
Moving into the online realm, everyone's favorite hyper-aggressive Scotsman, Ludovic Geilich, finds himself at a career high point when it comes to the PocketFives.com online rankings. Geilich, a former UKIPT winner, has been on a run of scintillating form of late and now occupies position No. 20 in the UK and 177th in the world.
In case you missed it, this week saw us sit down with Daniel Carter for an exclusive interview where he discussed the early part of his poker career, which included losing £100,000 in a failed business venture and hitting a low point when diagnosed with depression. Part 2 of his story will appear on PokerNews next week.
The final online story for this week is that of cash game traffic falling by 20% at Full Tilt. The large drop in numbers has been put down to the recent changes to the way it allocates seats to players in ring games in an attempt to cater to recreational players as opposed to seasoned grinders.
Rounding out the Round-Up this week are two ambling industry stories.
The first involves PokerStars and its new license by the Irish government that allows the site to offer its sports betting product to players from the Republic of Ireland, which you can read about by clicking here. Meanwhile, William Hill's 35% drop in pre-tax profits resulted in a 7.5% drop in its share price, which wiped more than £240 million off of the British company's value. More on that story here.