Brazil recognizes poker as a Game of Skill

Posted by Steve Ruddock on Feb 05, 2012 Posted in Poker News | 2 Comments »

The International Federation of Poker has won a major victory in their fight to have poker recognized as a “Mind Sport” across the globe. In a press release issued last week, the IFP was happy to announce that Brazil (the home of the 2016 World Mind Games) has officially declared poker a game of skill, and conveyed upon it “Sport” status.

Since 2009 the Confederação Brasileira de Texas Hold’em (CBTH), has been fighting for the designation, and according to the CBTH they were told in a private meeting with the Brazilian Sports Ministry that their registration has been accepted.

The following statement by the CBTH can be found on the Brazilian Sports Ministry’s website:

“Poker is a competitive discipline, which requires the participant to have intelligence, ability, and intellectual and behavioural skills in order to succeed. The CBTH represents the most extended definition of poker, Texas Hold’em and all the other variants of this game including but not exclusively Omaha, Omaha High / Low, 7 Card Stud, 7 Card Stud High / Low, Razz and Mixed Games.”

The IFP, headed by poker author and enthusiast Anthony Holden, has been making tremendous headway around the world in gaining poker the designation of a “Mind Sport” alongside other skill-dominant games like Chess, Go, and Bridge. With over 40 member nations from five different continents, the IFP has been growing at an amazing rate. According to the IFP website:

“While the size and scope of the IFP keeps expanding, the goal remains the same: to promote poker and it’s duplicate variation as a mind sport, without any discrimination as to race, sex, creed, or disability; and to reinforce the element of skill involved, as well as the talent and determination required to succeed.”

The IFP hosted two tournaments in London this past year: The IFP Nations Cup (a first of its kind team event in the new poker discipline of “Duplicate Poker”) and the IFP World Championship (a $500,000 freeroll attended by some of the biggest names in poker).

The Nations Cup was won by the team from Germany that included Captain Stephan Kalhammer, Sebastian Ruthenberg, Moritz Kranich, Tobias Reinkemeier, Sandra Naujoks, Konstantin Buecherl, Hans Martin Vogl and Tim Reese. As a Duplicate Poker event, each team was dealt the same cards and points were awarded based on how the hands were played –Germany edged out France and Brazil by two points to win the title 24-22.

The IFP World Championship was claimed by Spain’s Raul Mestre, who edged out the UK’s Victoria Coren for the title and the $250k first-place prize. Coren was one of three women to make the final table of the event, with Marsha Waggoner and Sandra Naujoks the others (all three women cashed in the tournament).

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2 Responses to “Brazil recognizes poker as a Game of Skill”

  1. James Guill says:

    Be careful now. Do we really want poker declared a sport? The Wire Act of 1961 applies to bet placed on sporting events….per the DOJ…..

  2. Steve Ruddock says:

    That’s a good point, but I don’t even think the DOJ would be so hypocritical as to recognize Brazil’s decision, but disregard France, Italy, UK, etc’s decision to legalize online poker… oh wait, it’s the DOJ, you are probably right 🙂

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