The Irish Poker Open Tournament is Europe’s oldest No Limit Texas Holdem tournament and one of the continent’s most prestigious. The popular tournament ran last weekend and was won by a local, 22-year-ol Irishman named Niall Smyth.
The Independent.iereports that Smyth’s luck began when he started dating one Kim Madigan about a month ago because it was at Madigan’s urging that he put €20 on a horse race through an online sportsbook and won €200. Smyth’s good fortune continued when he had the presence of mind to transfer some of his winnings to the poker account of the same site. There he used it to win an Irish Open Main Event seat worth €3,200 + €300.
Not bad, but Smyth was just getting started as he went on a tear and found himself at the final table and then ultimately heads-up against British poker veteran Surinder Sunar. The one-on-one combat wasn’t easy and saw the two players trying to get the better of each other for nearly four hours before both players went all-in and Smyth had to rely on his ample luck to see him through as he held the lesser hole cards.
With fate clearly on his side Smyth pocketed the €550,000 that came from first place, but he wasn’t finished there. As a bonus he won the Sole Survivor challenge which awarded him an additional €100,000 for being the last man standing from the online qualifiers from the site he won his seat at – all this from a €20 horse bet.
This is one of the great advantages to having an account at a site with a sportsbook, racebook and a poker room. If you suddenly see a bet that seems too juicy to resist you can use some of you poker bankroll to take advantage and vice versa. If you make a decent score on a horse race, it’s easy to move some funds to your poker account and take a shot at something like a World Series of Poker qualifier.
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