In India, a country where poker is still (in some places) regarded as some illicit gambling game, it has certainly come a long way since its establishment, then whether in terms of gaining prominence or getting embraced as a game of mind and a substantial part of that sensational journey has been scripted by poker leagues. Spearheading these ventures have been Raj Kundra and Shilpa Shetty Kundra’s Viaan Industries that partnered up with a Switzerland-based International Federation of Match Poker (IFMP) in 2017 to instigate the beginning of the Match Indian Poker League (Match IPL).
Up to this point, three editions of Match IPL have been played out since 2017, and the latest being season 3 which saw a comprehensive victory of Team Pune Kings. Subsequently, the victorious team will now be representing India at the IFMP Nations Cup 2019 that is lined up to be held in Ireland.
Much to the proffering of online poker fanatics, an opportunity to qualify for a place in the Team India squad proceeding for the IFMP Nationals Cup 2019, Kundra’s latest online poker endeavour PokerRaj has come up with a series of Nations Cup Tournament qualifiers that will be taking place on every Sunday at 9:30 over the course of next two months. The schedule for the same is mentioned below:
2018-19 IFMP Nations Cup Qualifier Scheme
|November 11, 2018||9:30 PM||Nation Cup – Qualifier 1||₹ 1,00,000|
|November 18, 2018||9:30 PM||Nation Cup – Qualifier 2||₹ 1,00,000|
|November 25, 2018||9:30 PM||Nation Cup – Qualifier 3||₹ 1,00,000|
|December 02, 2018||9:30 PM||Nation Cup – Qualifier 4||₹ 1,00,000|
|December 09, 2018||9:30 PM||Nation Cup – Qualifier 5||₹ 1,00,000|
|December 16, 2018||9:30 PM||Nation Cup – Qualifier 6||₹ 1,00,000|
|December 23, 2018||9:30 PM||Nation Cup – Qualifier 7||₹ 1,00,000|
|December 30, 2018||9:30 PM||Nation Cup – Qualifier 8||₹ 1,00,000|
|January 06, 2019||9:30 PM||Nation Cup – Qualifier 9||₹ 1,00,000|
|January 13, 2019||9:30 PM||Nation Cup Finale|
IFMP Nations Cup Qualifiers
The online qualifiers for IFMP Nation’s Cup are well underway at PokerRaj and the first qualifier tournament was organized on November 11, 2018. From here on every Sunday, right till January 6, 2019, a Nations Cup qualifier tournament will be organized every week on PokerRaj.com. While, each of these qualifiers has a passable buy-in of ₹ 990 with a prize pool guarantee of ₹ 1 Lakh. On top of the prize money, the player finishing at the top at the end of each qualifier will earn its seat into the Nations Cup Finale, scheduled for January 13, 2019.
The final event at the Qualifiers tournament, Nations cup Finale, slated for January 13, 2019 will be a freezeout event in contrast to the each of the qualifiers that allows re-entries. The nine victors from each nine Sunday qualifiers will lock horns in the Finale and the eventual triumphant will book his seat as a member of Team India and also be given an all-expense paid trip to Ireland to play at the IFMP Nations Cup 2019.
Match IPL and Indian Participation in IFMP Nations Cup
A team based genre of the poker, Match Poker, has procured prominence at a gallop in India through various poker leagues. Match IPL thus far turned out to be a sublime platform for the Indian Poker professionals to exhibit their adroitness on both the circuits, domestic as well as international one.
The maiden Match Indian Poker League (Match IPL) was organized at Yash Raj Studios in Mumbai from November 17, 2017 – November 18, 2017. The season ended on a high note with the Harman Baweja –owned Mumbai All Stars making the headlines with their victory over Team Jaipur and winning ₹ 1.25 crores in prize money. Subsequently, the team represented India at the IFMP Nations Cup 2017 that was organized from December 4, 2107 – December 7, 2017 at the Eynsham Hall, Oxfordshire in England. However, team Ireland lifted the Nations Cup while Team India finished their run at fifth place at the event.
After the extravagant success of season 1 of Match IPL, the season 2 of the same was announced to be held on March 31, 2018 in Kolkata. The latter season saw an increase in the number of participating teams taking the total number of teams to 10. The debutant team, Haryana Hawks, made its mark in its very season by lifting the trophy of Match IPL Season 2 and bagging an amount of ₹ 40 lakhs.
This year, the third season of Match IPL was hosted from October 23, 2018 – October 24, 2018 in Mumbai and outperforming other teams was the team of Pune Kings, constituting some dexterous players including the First Lady of Indian Poker Shuchi Chamaria along with online pros Rubin Labroo and Akshay Nasa, Tanmay Bagga, Akash Shekhar under the captaincy of one of the formidable and pre-eminent player, Gaurav Gala with Team Manager Amar Katharani. The vanquishing team won the season for ₹ 1.35 crores.
Impressively, in October 2017, IFMP was rewarded with the ‘observer’ status by the Global Association of International Sports Federations (GAISF) and accepted it into the Olympic Family.
Terms & Conditions of PokerRaj Nation’s Cup Tournament
- Adding to its striking features, PokerRaj has proclaimed that players can also get a free ticket to the Nations Cup tournament (qualifiers) by depositing ₹ 3,000 using the code ’NATION’ on the site. The minimum deposit is ₹ 3,000.
- However, PokerRaj has admonished that though winning the Nations Cup tournament will provide the winner with a seat in the squad, the same does not guarantee a place in the six-member Team India which would be ultimately playing the battle.
- In addition to that, players who have won a Nations Cup qualifier can participate in multiple qualifiers; however each player will receive only one ticket to the Finale.
- In a scenario where the winner of a Nations Cup qualifier has already attained a ticket to the Finale, the runner-up of the qualifier will be credited the Finale ticket.
- Into the bargain, ₹ 2,000 will be debited from prize money won by the Finale winner and he/she needs to have a valid passport, while travel arrangements would be subject to Visa approvals.
The Nations Cup tournament qualifiers is an impressive way for the Indian players to put on the Indian jersey, besides representing and playing for the pride of the country at the IFMP Nations Cup 2019.