Low-stakes poker players in the UK have another live tournament series to play in 2020, courtesy of GentingBet.
Buoyed by a successful 2019 schedule, Genting Poker has added a new selection of “Super 80” tournaments to its roster.
Each tournament will cost £80/$103 to enter, and carry a £15,000/$19,400 guarantee. In addition to four starting flights, 30-minute blind levels will be used throughout.
New Low-Stakes Tier for GentingBet Followers
The GentingBet Poker Series now features three buy-in levels: $645, $290, and $103. The addition of a third level takes the number of live events in the UK to 16. More importantly, it provides additional opportunity for novice poker players.
GentingBet Poker Series Super 80 Schedule
- Feb. 26 – Super 80 Stoke
- May 20 – Super 80 Sheffield
- June 17 – Super 80 Westcliff
- July 22 – Super 80 Newcastle
- Sep. 9 – Super 80 Reading
- Nov. 25 – Super 80 Blackpool
The online poker industry’s shift toward casual players over the last five years has been well documented. Major operators, including PokerStars, Partypoker, Unibet, and GGPoker have all introduced products and policies aimed at less-experienced players over the last three years.
These efforts haven’t always been met with a positive response. In 2019, Partypoker received backlash for banning heads-up display (HUD) software. To render tracking software useless, the operator also stopped players from downloading hand histories.
Although hand data could still be accessed online for a set period of time, the shift meant regular players had to give up their HUDs. Moreover, any player notes they’d previously made were lost after the update.
Partypoker’s Tom Waters defended the decision. In addition to pointing out that those with more money can afford better software, he said the dominance of experienced players was hurting poker.
“The average lifespan of a new player on Partypoker and other sites is abysmal, I think most players are gone in a day. These guys come in, they get eaten alive, and they leave because they had a poor experience,” Waters said in June 2019.
With online poker shifting more toward casual players, live tournaments are now following suit.
Changing Demographics Push Affordable Poker Agenda
Earlier this week, the World Series of Poker’s Seth Palansky announced a new set-up for this summer’s $1,500 events.
In light of poker’s changing demographics, he said $1,500 is the “sweet spot” for buy-ins. Because of that, the 2020 schedule will feature 25 bracelet events that cost $1,500 to enter.
Palansky and his team have also introduced a Player of the Year (POY) leaderboard specifically for $1,500 events. This will run separate from the main WSOP POY leaderboard and, in theory, should give more players a chance to win something extra.
Providing affordable options for players is part of the changing state of poker. GentingBet and the WSOP have taken the lead, but they won’t be the last operators to introduce new low-cost tournaments.
As efforts to attract new players pay off, the key to sustaining growth will be to keep those players engaged. In the UK, GentingBet’s $103 events should do that and, in turn, contribute to the ongoing push to bring fresh blood into poker.