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Unibet Open Kicks Off Season 11 in London This Week

Unibet Open

Get ready for the 11th season of the Unibet Open, which returns to London for the third year in a row for the kickoff. The Poker Room at Grosvenor Victoria Casino, better known as the fabled "The Vic", will once again set the stage for five days of poker action.

The first festival of 2018 caters to pros and recreational players alike with a diverse schedule. The four-day £990 Main Event kicks off on Thu., Feb. 22. The festival also features a £2,200 High Roller, the £330 Unibet Open Deepstack, several low-stakes turbo buy-in events, and a £110 Ladies Event.

[Removed:158] is the reigning champion at "The Vic". Last year, Van Lancker defeated a 419-player strong field to claim the first place prize of £71,950. It was Van Lancker's third final table at a Unibet Open event. After finishing fifth and third at previous Unibet Opens, the Belgian finally made it to the top spot. Van Lancker followed in the footsteps of Dave Shallow who won £62,000 the year before.

Unibet Open London History

YearBuy-inEntriesPrize PoolWinnerPrize
2009£2,750266€584,910Thanh Doan£187,000
2010£1,650273£255,000Paul Valkenburg£109,550
2012£1,320315£378,000Pratik Ghatge£85,050
2014£1,100399£319,200Iaron Lightbourne£70,000
2016£825418£313,500Dave Shallow£62,000
Wins Unibet Open London" align="center" wh="3000x2000"]2017 Unibet Open London winner Gerret van Lancker

Last year, Rauno "Ben" Tahvohnen" made his way to the final table and finished in 6th place (£13,650). The 27-year old Estonian skateboard instructor, affectionally known as "Estonian Jesus," received massive support from fans throughout the event and signed on as Unibet Ambassador shortly after.

Tahvonen will be back, joined by a slew of other Unibet Ambassadors including Britain's Ian Simpson, Irishmen Dara O'Kearney and David Lappin, Quentin Lecomte and Alexandre Reard from France, Romania's two-time Unibet Open champion Dan Murariu and Espen Uhlen Jorstad from Norway. Daiva Byrne, who's leading the popular Ladies at Unibet Poker Facebook group, will also make her appearance.

Record-breaking year

The Unibet Open is fresh off a record-breaking tenth season, which was celebrated with a special European Open edition in Las Vegas. The European Open drew 673 runners, the highest ever number for a Unibet-related event. American professional Joe Serock conquered the special event and cashed for $113,059.

eSports Battle Royale VIII

The traditional eSports Battle Royale £10,000 Sit 'n Go will return as well. It's the eight time well-known eSporters and Twitch-streamers swap their usual digital playground for some live poker action. Alan "Hotted89" Widmann, Sophia "djarii" White, Scot "Sco" McMillan, Mark "Valkia" Purdy, Jeffrey "Sjow" Brusi, Thijs "ThijsHS" Molendijk, Kelly "Kelly_Jean" Jean, Colin "Koolein" Wijnholds and Philip "Syrinxx" Schönebaum will make their appearance. The winner of the freeroll will take home £5,000, the runner-up receives £3,000, and number three banks £2,000.


Off the felt, there will be plenty of opportunities for players to have fun. Enjoy welcome drinks Feb. 23 from 8 p.m. to 11 p.m. at the Draft House - Paddington (right next to the Hotel). The infamous Unibet Players Party is on Feb. 24 from 9.30 p.m. to 3 a.m. at The London Reign, located at 215 - 217 Piccadilly, St. James's. Unibet Open players need to enter the popular club between 9:30 and 11:45.

Unibet Open London live stream

Unibet London will have a live stream running on Twitch throughout the five-day festival. Long-time commentator and Unibet Ambassador David Vanderheyden will take the helm and will be joined by several Unibet Ambassadors on guest commentary. Also, Unibet staff will join to give behind-the-curtain perspective on all things Unibet Open related. Besides following the action on the feature table. Vanderheyden & co. will be chatting with other guests in the booth and running competitions and promotions.

2018 Unibet Open London schedule

DateTime (CET)EventBuy-inLevelsStarting Stack
Mon. 1920:00Satellite Main Event£16520 min.10,000
Tue. 2020:00Satellite High Roller£33020 min.15,000
Wed. 2119:00eSports SNG-30/20 min.25,000
 19:00Satellite Main Event£16520 min.10,000
 20:00NLH Highroller - Day 1£2,20040 min.30,000
Thu. 2211:00Main Event - Day 1A£99060 min.30,000
 12:00NLH Highroller - Day 2£2,20040 min.30,000
 20:00Satellite Main Event£16520 min.10,000
Fri. 2311:00Main Event - Day 1B£99060 min.30,000
 21:00NLH Turbo£16515 min.15,000
Sat. 2412:00Main Event - Day 2-60 min.-
 14:00Unibet Open Deepstack - Day 1£33030/40 min.20,000
 15:00Ladies Event£11030 min.15,000
 21:00Turbo Bounty (£100 Bounty)£22015 min.15,000
Sun. 2512:00Main Event - Day 3 - Final Table-60/45/30min.-
 12:00Unibet Open Deepstack - Day 2-40 min.-
 13:00NLH Turbo£11015 min.10,000

Follow PokerNews throughout the week as our live reporting team will be on hand to cover the entire 2018 Unibet Open London Main Event from start to finish.

  • The 11th season of the Unibet Open starts in London. Learn all about it at UK & Ireland PokerNews.

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