Cheating claims surface from 2009 Partouche Poker Tour

Posted by Steve Ruddock on Feb 05, 2013 Posted in Poker Gossip, Tournament News | No Comments »

ppt-partouche-poker-tourAn edited-down video with some spliced-in Godfather movie screen-shots and theme music of the 2009 Partouche Poker Tour Main Event final table that has been making the rounds on French poker websites is now getting wider coverage. The video appears to show two of the participants Jean Paul Pasqualini and Cedric Rossi using hand signals to signal their hands to one another. The two men finished 1st and 2nd in the tournament respectively.

I first heard of the video in an article on by Haley Hintze, and after finding the video and reading through the 2+2 thread, I have to say that unless this is a case of some very creative editing the evidence is pretty strong. Both men seemed to be extremely fidgety and used their hands far more often than would be expected by a high-level poker player; constantly touching their head and face, as well as their neck and arms.

According to the video the Hand Signals were as follows:

* Head = Ace

* Front (forehead) = King

* Eye = Queen

* Nose = Jack

* Mouth = Ten

* Neck = Nine or Eight

* Arms = Small Pair

Throughout the 8:45 video you repeatedly see the two men using these hand signals: For instance, if one of them held JT you would see them touch their nose and mouth in rapid succession. The video shows these hand signals being employed perfectly, but it will take a complete review of the entire final table video to determine if these signals were employed throughout. For full disclosure, it should be noted that Pasqualini has denied the claims, and the creator of the video is working on a poker book. You can find more information on this at the 2+2 forum:

Perhaps the most damning bit of evidence was a hand where a short-stacked Pasqualini folds AK when Rossi was holding AA. Pasqualini (as the video predicts) raises with AK and then touches his head and forehead in succession; Rossi the re-raises and puts both hands on top of his head (a very strange mannerism for someone with AA); Pasqualini then smirks before folding his AK and avoiding the confrontation – this hand comes at the tail-end of the video.

This is not the first controversy to arise at the Partouche Poker Tour either. You may recall last year’s controversy over the guaranteed prize-pool, which ended up marking the final Partouche Poker Tour Main Event. But in 2010 a major controversy arose when Ali Tekintamgac was disqualified from the final table for using spotters to signal other players’ hole-cards.

The sheer number of cheating incidents in recent years is casting a very dark cloud on the poker world. Hopefully players will become more discriminating when odd behavior is on display, and with the help of hole-card cameras, at least some of this cheating can be snuffed out.

I’ve posted a link to the video below:


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