Goa Chief Minister Pramod Sawant mentioned that the state would decide on the recommendations given by the expert committee on allowing all economic activities in the state. The dipping COVID-19 positivity rate would allow casinos and movie halls to function at 100% functional capacity.
While casinos reopened with 50% capacity in September 2021, it has been difficult to get approval as several political parties were against restarting them. Times are changing, and there is light at the end of the tunnel for casino operators and enthusiasts. A post COVID-19 world is soon to be a reality. Goa has been fast pacing towards it; an example of it is how gloriously the Carnival in Goa took place recently. While all carnivals are fun, live poker is the type of carnival we LOVE! The first in the live series is Baazi Poker Tour (BPT) which is scheduled for 23 -25 March, then the upcoming Deltin Poker Tour (DPT). Now if these two live poker tournaments have announced their dates, it naturally got us thinking…
When is IPC Set to Return?
It is without doubt the biggest and most prestigious event in the domestic and indeed even the regional poker calendar. Indian poker players have been longing to witness the poker festival that goes on with full gusto as more than 2 years have passed since the last IPC in January 2020. Over the last couple of months, a number of players who Gutshot got in touch with for interviews and features asked us only one question “When will IPC be back?”
But why is IPC so hyped?
One of the top reasons for the hype is the prize money on offer at these IPC live events. The prize pools and the footfall at IPC events have been growing massively with every edition. In 2019, the series promised INR 3+ Crore in guaranteed prize money but when the floors filled up massively, IPC had broken attendance records in all their 4 tournaments and the overall series guarantee went up to ₹5.48 Crore.
The last player to walk away with this title was Rubin Labroo who shipped the India Poker Championship (IPC) 50k Main Event after fighting a massive field of 693 entries in Goa’s Big Daddy Casino. Labroo walked away with the prestige of becoming the India Poker Champion, pocketing more than ₹45 Lakh, which came with a trophy, a Panerai MS Dhoni Limited Edition watch worth INR 6.67 Lakh, and a sponsorship package from Spartan Poker worth INR 20 Lakh!
Just like IPC events, even IPC awards are a glitzy affair that people involved with the Indian poker fraternity look forward to. It started for the first time in 2017 and has since then been a crowd puller. Adding glamour to the starry awards night as well known people from Bollywood namely Anita Hassanandani, Neha Dhupia, Kunal Khemu, Rannvijay Singha among others. Other well-known people from the industry including Shibani Dandekar, Gursimran Khamba have also performed during IPC events.
The rich history of this live poker series, the dripping glamour, and the huge benefits and recognition players get after taking a podium finish at an IPC event has always been a big draw. This star-studded event always has Bollywood celebrities and international poker players flocking to be a part of the action. King of Instagram, Dan Bilzerian made a special appearance in 2019 IPC event. The last two IPC series being held at the Spartan LIVE poker room in Goa’s Big Daddy Casino.
ALSO READ: 2010-2019: The IPC Journey
This much-vaunted series had its humble beginnings back in March 2010 and crowned the first ever India Poker Champion in December that year. Ever since, it is synonymous with fame, pride, glamour, and recognition in the Indian and you can even say, international poker fraternity. Winners of some IPC Main Events and other titles are today very well-recognised players who’ve made their mark even on the international circuit including winning gold at the World Series of Poker in Las Vegas.
Spartan Poker has been the official presenting partner of the IPC, and we expect that to continue. But… how far away are we before we hear an announcement from India’s biggest poker event? Are there going to be more features and surprises waiting for us? We’re craving answers to these questions in delicious anticipation, much as you!
Manthra Koliyer is a writer at Gutshot Magazine. She has an affinity for seeing the world through people’s eyes. With a bubbly fun personality, you can always catch her chatting with anyone she comes across. Holding an English Literature degree from Wilson College, Mumbai, and a Post Graduate Diploma in Journalism from Asian College of Journalism, this pop culture fanatic is ready to take on the world with a pen, paper, and microphone. She also actively works on her personal blog called namasteyconvict.blogspot.com, where for a moment she lets you into her drama-filled world.
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