Players wanting to square off against an elite pro but not pony up a huge tournament entry fee now have a chance to put their skills to the test against 2004 World Series of Poker bracelet winner Annie Duke. By sitting at a specially designated Holdem table at online poker site Ultimate Bet, players can earn points for use in the site’s monthly “Annie Duke Freeroll” event.


The prize pool for the event is $1,000, which comes directly from Duke’s “hard-earned cash,” according to The maximum number of entries is 400 and the winner nets $300. The site’s promotional materials state that “you’ll find Annie attending this freeroll event occasionally both to chat with and challenge the players.”


To qualify for the tournament, players must earn 300 UltimatePoints during a month of play at the site’s Annie Duke $4-$8 Texas Holdem table. Points are earned for each hour of play and each hand dealt, with the point amount tied to the amount of the rake. Details are available at


Duke Keluaran HKdefeated a field of 234 players at last year’s World Series of Poker $2,000 buy-in Omaha Hi-Lo tournament and later beat eight other top pros to take home the $2 million first prize at the World Series of Poker Tournament of Champions. She contributes strategy articles and partakes in promotions as a member of “Team UB”.


What will 2005 bring for poker?


2004 was a banner year in the poker world. All of us remotely engrained in the poker world probably had a pretty good year on, and off the felt. The coming year will bring more opportunity, more poker programming, and more certainty in the online poker world. Enjoy the following romp through the year that is about to come for us….2005.




The biggest issue facing online poker players is the issue of when the US government is going to choose to act with respect to the legality, and jurisdictional issues that make online poker so….well, complex for the US Government to deal with right now. 2004 saw the WTO (World Trade Organization) rule against the US government (the US is appealing), and in favor of the tiny nation of Antigua, who filed suit contending the US ban on online gaming violated the WTO charter, and represented an unfair trade barrier. About one in 20 resident of Antigua is employed in some form through the online gaming industry.


The problem of what to do with online gaming represents a real quandary for the government to deal with. On one hand, the sheer amount of dollars changing hands everyday at online gaming sites represents a possible windfall for the government coffers should they decide to tax and regulate online gaming, at a time when a windfall would be a welcome relief. On the other hand, the current administration would be facing a real divide among its core constituents with respect to the ethical issues that some feel strongly about in regards to any type of legalized gaming.


The real issue here is that no government can control the content of Keluaran HKonthe internet, and as such any government trying to control internet content is going to run afoul of a good portion of its residents, and most of the other nations in the world. Logically, it seems the US Government must either back down, or figure out some type of regulatory policy. Given the way the current administration operates, one would assume backing down is not an option. There is no question that the specter of regulation looms over the online poker world; one would guess that in 2005 this issue will be decided one way or the other.


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