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Aussie Poker Star Search on HD

The search for Australia's next poker star will begin on Channel Ten's new high-definition sport channel, One HD, the network announced Friday. "The Poker Star", in association with PokerStars.net and 2005 World Series of Poker champion Joe Hachem, will go to air later this year, offering 11 contestants the chance to become a poker star. The contestants will compete at four major international poker tournament in locations such as Las Vegas and Monte Carlo, with the winner taking home the ultimate prize of $100,000. Those interested in being a part of the competition can download PokerStars.net and try to qualify for the final, or register their interest at Channel Ten's Website. Casting calls will be held in Melbourne on April 18 and at Sydney's Star City Casino on April 27.

Australia Online Poker Law

The letter of the law, if one would read the Interactive Gambling Act as it is, says online poker sites geared towards Australian citizens is illegal. Simple as that. In reality, the ban is less respected by online poker rooms than it is, say, in the United States. Australian newspapers and websites have painted the current situation, which is as follows: Even though the law, ever since 2001, does not permit online gambling firms based outside Australia to take bets from those "physically present in Australia," it is practiced by some. Gibraltar based Ladbrokes have no restrictions. The law has them facing a hefty fine of up to $1.1 million per day, as they risk losing the rights to apply for a Victorian land betting license in the future, which they reported in January that they are interested in. How come? How come Ladbrokes are not being persecuted and online poker companies do take bets from Australians? Perhaps the answer is in the ongoing review of the legislation by the Productivity Commission, mainly since the courts find it difficult to enforce penalties against overseas companies.

Australian Poker Hero Qualifiers Begin

Online qualifiers for Australia's first ever poker TV series, "Australian Poker Hero," begin on Monday.The new program, being run by Full Tilt Poker, will give poker players from across the country the chance to win big and show off their skills to a national audience.Under the new concept, poker players and celebrity guests will compete against each other in weekly qualifiers, for a share of the weekly $25,000 prize pool.The ten episodes will screen on the Win and NBN regional networks from October 2009, and will be filmed at Melbourne's Crown Casino.The victor in each episode will win a $15,000 package to the 2010 Aussie Millions, giving them a shot at a main prize of $2.5 million.To register for free qualifiers just download Full Tilt Poker and create a new account. Freerolls will run each day from July 27 through to November 21.

Sport Legends Turn to Poker

Shane Warne needs no introduction. The blonde spin-wizard, an Australian icon and a world legend in the game of cricket is among Wisden's most highly rated cricketers of all time. The man has an impressive tally of 708 test wickets and 3154 runs over a magical career. His ODI and first class performances are even more striking. Now as Warne approaches 40, he is looking to his other passion - professional poker.Love of the gameRecently Warne missed several high-profile cricket matches, choosing instead to spend a week the Rio Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas. He was a fierce competitor in the World Series of Poker - among the most prestigious poker tournaments in the world. That Warne came close to making major headway cannot be overlooked. Clearly the man has talent and he is taking his game-playing skills to the next level.Warne plays tournament poker, which he believes to be a game of tremendous skill and strategy. His ability to have his opponents second-guessing him served him well in cricket and now serves him extraordinarily well in poker. It's the tactical side of poker - the bluffing, gamesmanship and high-stakes gambling, that has him interested.Warne has already competed in the 2008 World Series of Poker and several Aussie Millions poker tournaments. Recounting his WSOP tournament, Warne started on 19,000 chips and ended the day in 24th position overall, with more than 173,000 in chips on hand. In fact he is so enamored by the game that he joined an online poker room, 888.com, and is now their sporting face at the poker tables.

JackpotCity Mobile Casino on the Go

In an exciting development, JackpotCity Casino has launched JackpotCity Mobile. This hi-tech advancement to JackpotCity Casino has eager mobile gamers lining up to get in on the action. The variety of games available in the mobile version of the casino is substantial - some 16 games including all the hot favourites.Hot summer gamingPlayers can now use the free mobile JackpotCity Casino software to gain maximum entertainment value from this fine online casino. Among the many benefits are safe and secure gaming, 24/7 expert customer support, exclusive access to hot promotions and some of the best games on the market. There are loads of enticing sign-up bonuses and plenty generous offers to fans on their toes.Leading casino gamesThere's certainly a ton of action to enjoy: from Lara Croft of TombRaider fame to the mega-jackpots of Major Millions. But there's loads more stylish casino games on offer including Treasure Nile, Fruit Fiesta, Blackjack, 3 Card Poker, Baccarat, Scratch 'n' Score, Scratch Card, Keno, Jacks or Better, Pub Fruity, Double Magic, Thunderstruck and Royal Derby.More? Yup!Lastly, JackpotCity Casino is one of only 4 online casinos participating in the free slots tournament for a million euros - the largest ever - My Gold Ticket.

PartyPoker New Gourmet Ambassador

Not so long ago, Stewart Scott was basting the pork rotisserie in an Adelaide kitchen, but now this former food maestro is living a life fit for a king. 2009 Aussie Millions Poker Tournament All the surprises of 2009 were the harbingers of great riches for Scott. This professional poker player hit poker platinum when he won the prestigious Aussie Millions Main Event. Scott's ties to PartyPoker.com go way back. This avid player is now the frontrunner in the online poker room's VIP club and will be representing them at the PokerNews Cup in Melbourne. He will join 17 other qualifiers at the Palladium Lounge in Melbourne this week. Scott is preparing for January 2010, when he will officially defend his poker crown. Gaining Momentum Scott's schedule is jam-packed with PartyPoker. Among others, he will be taking part in an Australian publicity tour as well as publicizing his own invitational events. His is truly a story of humble beginnings. From a life as a gourmet chef with an IT side business, he soon fine-tuned his online poker skills. After winning a satellite series at SkyCity Casino in Adelaide, he was off to the WSOP Main Even with a $30,000 package. Bright Future Being PartyPoker's brand ambassador is no mean feat, but Stewart is all smiles. This November, PartyPoker will begin introducing qualifiers to win packages for the 2010 Aussie Millions. But before that kicks off, is the Million Dollar Hand. This tournament runs from October 5 through October 30. Up for grabs is the chance to win a massive $1 million or more. A royal flush pays out maximum points - $1 million. For real money PartyPoker players, there's a lot at stake. All tables will get a playing card for every 15 PartyPoints they earn during this period and there are loads of cash prizes to be won too.

New Law for WA Racing Industry

The WA government has just passed a new law to help the WA racing industry recover lost revenue. The WA TAB currently pays fees, totalling $18 million a year, to other State racing industries when betting on their racing products. This new legislations now allows the WA racing industry to charge its own fees to interstate and international operators when they wager on WA races. The levy will be based either on 1.5% of the turnover or 20% of gross revenue, whichever is greater, or alternatively, 0.2% of turnover. This detail is yet to be worked out. As a result, WA will be able to recover $15 million of lost revenue. The levy will be applied retrospectively from 1 September 2008 meaning that all operators must pay the levy dating back more than 12 months ago. Regulations to establish the process are still currently being drafted, however, it is expected that the industry will start to benefit from the new fees early next year. Meanwhile, Betfair and Sportsbet continue their legal battles against the NSW government. The companies are alleging that the race fields levy in NSW (which collects 1.5% of any wager) only benefits the TABs operated by Tabcorp and Tatts Group.

Aussie News Publisher to Introduce Gaming to Websites

Australian news publishing giant News Ltd is expected to announce a new strategy this week in which it will launch pay-to-play trivia games on one of its websites to generate more income. Users will be charged around A$1.50 to play the flash games, which will be featured on the website of the company's Sydney newspaper, the Daily Telegraph. English company Amuso is providing News Ltd with the platform, which will allow users to play games for free or to pay to participate in games against other users for prize money. Participants will be able to communicate with each other through chat facilities. Topics for the games are expected to include general knowledge, celebrities and entertainment. The move comes as major news companies find it increasingly difficult to continue offering customers free access to their websites. News Ltd chief Rupert Murdoch has played a prominent role in the debate over how to solve the ongoing problems - he recently announced that another member of the News Corp stable - Britain's Times Online - is planning to charge users for 24 hour access news content. The latest announcement about online gaming will come as welcome news for those readers of the Daily Telegraph who will be hoping the news site finds other ways of generating income and refrains from charging its customers for using the site.

Crown Casino Freed of Responsibility

Harry Kakavas has gambled $1.5 billion over 14 months at Crown Casino in Melbourne, Australia in 2005-2006. Playing baccarat, Kakavas would bet up to $300,000 a hand. Suing the casino for losses and damages for the sum of $35 million "only", the court has freed the casino of duty to the high roller. Instead he owes the casino $1 million, and probably court expenses too. Justice David Harper ruled that while the gambler could have used Crown Casino's self-exclusion program, he had continuously bargained for better deals, which he got in the form of private jets to fly in to Melbourne and other high-roller benefits. The justice said: "I am satisfied that, had Mr Kakavas wished to escape the enticements of the casino, he could have done so with ease. He could have arranged for self-exclusion." Free Choice or Politics In this case, the court has ruled to protect a person's free choice. In this context, a casino has no general duty to protect gamblers from themselves. Leader of Family First, Australian Senator Steve Fielding, has called following the ruling for the Prime minister to step in and get involved. The Federal Government, Fielding said, should "step in and change the laws regarding gambling inducements." Seemingly at odds with the free choice principle that the court has stated, Senator Fielding added that the Federal Government needs to protect the states as well. "The states are never going to do anything in this area because they are addicted to the revenue they make from gambling," said Fielding.

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