UEFA Champions League – The Biggest Champions in Europe

With most huge sporting competitions come huge amounts of betting. One of the largest sporting competitions in the world is the UEFA Champions League. Incorporating the top tier teams from all of Europe’s premier football divisions, the competitions runs annually and works much like any other league-based competition – facing off teams initially in groups and then in a series of knock out phases.

UEFA Champions LeagueRunning since the 1950’s the competition has a very long history of attracting lots of bets, given the fact that it incorporates teams from so many different nations. With a reputation for producing some of the biggest surprises in term of unexpected results, it is very little wonder indeed as to why so many people enjoy placing so many wagers on this competition each and every year.

The UEFA Champions League is one of the most heavily sponsored sporting events to take place in the world annually, with this seasons guarantors including the likes of Gazprom, Heineken, MasterCard, Nissan, PepsiCo and HTC. Such huge sponsorship deals are obviously reflective of huge viewership rates, and you would be correct in thinking that an astronomical number of people tune in to Champions League fixtures year in year out.

The 2013 final between the two Germany Bundesliga clubs Borussia Dortmund and Bayern Munich, which took place at London’s famous Wembley Stadium, is the most watched match of the competition so far. Raking in an estimated 360million television viewers, it is unknowable how many bets were placed!

Media coverage for the Champions League, in particular the latter-stage matches, is immense in size. Many media outlets scramble and contend for the rights to air the games in their countries – with many nations outside of Europe airing the games as well as those nations with teams participating.

Slotland Marks First Mobile Jackpot Winner’s 10th Anniversary

Compared to today’s mobile devices, the earliest mobile phones were slow; really, really slow. However, even for these phones, there were those who developed games, even casino games. One of the mobile casino pioneers, Slotland had released many games for mobile users. One such game was Lucky Stars.

Lucky Stars

Slotland_Lucky StarsOne of the first games to be released by Slotland was Lucky Stars, a 3 reel 5 payline slot game. On the twelfth of March, 2005, this game changed the life of one really lucky person. The winner recalls that the good times. His wife had taken theirs to the church and after “fiddling around” for a while, he decided to play. He had already played Lucky Stars before and it had yielded him some results, but nobody could have predicted what would soon happen.

He started off playing Golden 8, but after an hour with no luck he switched to Lucky Stars. He recalls that he had once earned returns of about $200 on a $100 investment. He already had two of his three stars lit up; fifteen minutes later his third star lit up and the bonus spin yielded three bars on his fourth payline, instantly depositing over one hundred and sixty thousand dollars in his account.

His Wife took it Away!

He retained only $5000, which he wanted to spend on gadgets, self-declared gadget-freak that he was; except for the $5000, his wife planned how to spend the rest of it. To commemorate the historic event, it was the first time that a player had won so much on a mobile device after all, Slotland has announce a special bonus that will last through the month, giving players $15 free to use on their mobile games. Today, Slotland has many more games and they are all work well on most smartphones and tablets.

The Interesting History of Poker Chips

Poker and poker chips naturally go together. People just don’t think of playing poker without using poker chips. But in the early days of poker, chips weren’t available. Read on if you want to learn more about poker chips past, present, and future.

PokerChipsEarly poker players played the game with things like gold nuggets or gold dust. Gaming houses and saloons soon saw the need for the standardization of betting units, so they started using clay, ivory and bones. When some players found it easy to forge these units, the gaming houses and saloons began branding the units with unique symbols.

But forging continued to be a problem, so companies started creating clay composition poker chips, and by the 1880s the poker chip industry was born. And, naturally enough, some players started finding ways to forge poker chips.

Is it still possible to forge poker chips?

The truth is, it is virtually impossible to forge poker chips nowadays. It is actually harder to forge poker chips than it is to forge American currency. Even if a chip was forged, it would be easy for a cashier to spot the fake. Poker chips are designed to have individual textures and weights. They have their own special feel.

Of course, casinos go much further in protecting against chip forgeries. Many casinos plant microchips inside their poker chips. They even use serial numbers on their chips. And, of course, they use plenty of other security measures which they’re not telling.

So, will the trusty poker chip ever be replaced with another betting tool? Will casinos resort to a form of electronic betting device? No one can say for sure. After all, there’s a lot to be said for a player being able to see what is in front of him and all of the other players as well. And what would players do if they didn’t have the chips to fiddle with while deciding how to play their hands?

But, by the same token (no pun intended), if an electronic betting apparatus can save casinos the cost of producing chips, the iconic chip just may go the way of the Dodo bird.

A-May-zing Month of Winners at Casino-Mate

There is no doubt about it – May has been an unbelievable month for Casino-Mate players! With four lucky winners walking away with big wins, this casino really has cause to celebrate.

T.A took home an a-May-zing $66686.01 playing on Retro Reels – Diamond Glitz, Joker 8000 and Hot Ink. She commented elatedly: “I was so happy to have won over $50,000. Casino-Mate is a great gaming site with awesome games! The best thing about it is that they have fast payouts without any issues!”

casino mateThe Thunderstruck series has always been a popular game for winners and this May we saw why! M.A won $17,170.00 on Thunderstruck and B.S won a substantial $20,923.20 on Thunderstruck 2.

The biggest mention this month however should go to V.C. With a winning total of $221,544.06, he was Casino-Mate’s shining star and showed what it truly means to walk away a winner. V.C. took home the rewards when he won on a variety of exciting slot games like Hot Ink, Retro Reels- Extreme Heat, Loaded, Avalon, Retro reels – Diamond Glitz and No Worries.

Connor Reeves, Manager and “voice” for Casino-Mate, commented, “We are absolutely gob-smacked with the amount of winners this month. To all the lucky players who were handsomely rewarded, and especially to V.C …Congratulations! You have made Casino-Mate proud! Our casino is about excitement, thrills and wins and our main goal is to ensure that our players have a satisfying gaming experience with us. With so many winners this May, we are confident that we have succeeded. Happy winners mean a happy casino!”

Casino-Mate is an authentic Australian themed online casino that offers players over 600 exciting games to choose from, including Video Slots, Progressive jackpots, Table Games, Parlour Games, Video Poker and more. Powered by Microgaming™, their games are guaranteed to bring excitement and delight to players with their incredible graphics, exhilarating themes and realistic sound effects. New amazing games are added to the game pool every month, bringing players more gaming thrills and more opportunities to win.

At Casino-Mate, new players are welcomed into the family with two Welcome Bonus options. If they choose the FreePlay Bonus, they receive 2000 complimentary credits to play and win with for 60 minutes on any game in the casino, no deposit required! They also get an added extra of 30 FreeSpins on Thunderstruck 2 which could make them a winner just like B.S. If players choose the Match Bonus offer, they will get an option of three Match Bonuses to choose from: either 300%, 100% or 35%, depending on the amount deposited.

Blackjack Strategy

Blackjack continues to be one of the most popular games both in casinos and online. Blackjack, however, is unlike other casino games in one important way. In most games, the player places a wager and is pretty much done with the action. In craps, you make a bet, and throw the dice. In roulette, you make a bet, and spin the wheel. In blackjack though, you make a bet, and are dealt cards, and then get to do something that can increase or decrease the odds of winning—you’re able to stand, hit, double-down or split pairs. In short, your able to play your hand. This is where what is known as the basic strategy comes in.

Basic Strategy Basics

BlackjackDeveloped in the 1950’s by four American GI’s with a decidedly mathematical bent, blackjack basic strategy is a blue-print on how to properly play any blackjack hand that can be dealt. Although invented using only rudimentary analytical tools, the basic strategy has since been tested millions of times in computer simulations and, it still works. It works in single deck games, or with a 6 deck shoe. It works in Sydney, Las Vegas, London and Hong Kong. Online or in-person, the matrix is so mathematically sound that it simply does not matter the venue or rules—it just works. Using the basic strategy will increase the player’s odds of winning.

Getting Even With the House

Every casino game has a built-in house advantage. In blackjack the house advantage is about 6 percent. The house gains this advantage because the player must draw first and thus risks busting before the dealer even plays. But, by playing perfect basic strategy, the player can reduce the house advantage from 6 percent down to .5 percent. That’s pretty close to even, and it’s the best deal you’re going to get at a casino.

The Weak Link

Learning basic strategy is pretty simple; playing basic strategy is a lot harder. It requires discipline to play every hand correctly. For example, basic strategy calls for a player to hit a hard 16 when the dealer shows a 7 through Ace. But suppose the last 6 cards dealt were all low; your gut tells you that a big 10 point card is coming next, ready to bust you. Don’t give in to your gut! The basic strategy only works when it’s played perfectly every hand.

Gambling systems are often just gimmicks. Blackjack basic strategy is not. It is time-tested and proved. Every semi-serious player should learn and use the basic strategy. You won’t win every hand, but, over the long-run, your winnings will increase.

The Wait Continues for Gambling Legalization in Japan

Proponents of legalizing gambling in Japan will have to wait another year for their wish to come true. The Japanese government has decided to postpone any long term decision about the future of gambling in their country. This move is a surprise given how adamant their Prime Minister was about passing a bill to legalize gambling this year.

Prime-Minister-Shinzo-AbePrime Minister Shinzo Abe has been a strong advocate of the legalization of gambling. He believes that the benefits to the tourism industry, along with the tax benefits, would greatly improve Japan’s economy. For a country that is always looking to discover new sources of revenue, gambling would provide an incredible boost.

It appeared that the country was supporting the Prime Minister’s plans. Most polls conducted in Japan reveal that a majority of citizens want gambling legalized. However, political posturing is getting in the way of a serious decision on the matter.

The Prime Minister’s government has been dealing with a lot of issues in the past few months. A number of scandals have propped up that have given their opposition a lot of leeway in the political sector. The opposition is not happy about the notion of legalized gambling. Even though they understand the economic benefits, they do not want to deliver such a big win for the current regime.

A lot of major gambling companies are eagerly awaiting the 2015 government sessions in Japan. They want legalization to happen as soon as possible. For example, the Las Vegas Sands company, Caesars, and MGM are all in a position to open talks over mega billion dollar casino resorts in Japan. Market experts have estimated that legalizing gambling and building casinos in Japan could generate north of $50 billion a year.

Some believe it is only a matter of time before gambling is legalized in Japan, but for now the nervous wait continues.

2014 World Series of Poker Review

This year’s edition of the famous World Series of Poker event was a resounding success. 2014 marked the 45th edition of this event, with WSOP taking center stage during the month of November.

2014 wsopEven though most of the fan and media attention surrounds the November Nine WSOP event, there was a lot of action during the summer as well. From the end of May to the middle of July, some of the best players in the world competed for a shot at the WSOP title. Over 65 different bracelet events took place, with the $10,000 Hold’em Main Event being the star attraction in July.

Five different players managed to win over a million dollars at WSOP in 2014. The biggest winner from this year’s edition was Daniel Colman, who took home over $15 million at the “The Big One for One Drop” event. Martin Jacobson won $10 million for his fantastic performances during the November Nine Hold’em event.

John Hennigan, Hugo Pingray, and Jonathan Dimmig were the three other players whose prize money broke the $1 million barrier. Hennigan’s win came at The Poker Players Championship, while the other two claimed grand prizes at separate hold’em events.

Vanessa Selbst was the most successful woman at this year’s World Series of Poker, winning over $900,000 at the Mixed Max No Limit Hold’em. She beat out over 130 entrants to claim the top prize in this event.

The November Nine event in Las Vegas was a huge draw for fans. Televised coverage of the event attracted attention from all over the United States, with Martin Jacobson picking up his first ever WSOP win. Jacobson’s win was all the more remarkable due to his lack of chips at the start of November Nine. Jacobson started the event with only 7% of the chips, but he beat a star studded field to claim the trophy.

Two Poker Scandals and One Huge Purchase

Grosvenor Victoria CasinoIn July, Aprirose investors purchased London’s Grosvenor Victoria Casino for a cool £55.5 million. The casino, known as “the spiritual home of London’s poker scene,” is frequented by celebrity poker players including Victoria Coren. It is also the flagship casino of The Rank Group, a collection of properties around London. Tim Meakes, Head of Specialist Investment at Aprirose, said in a statement that the casino represented an excellent opportunity for the investment company.

In October, renowned poker champion Phil Ivey went to court after being accused of cheating to win a high-stakes game of Punto Banco baccarat. The tournament took place in 2012 at Britain’s oldest casino, Genting Crockfords Casino, which is run by Genting Bhd. His total winnings were £7.7 million, which had not been paid by the casino due to the cheating allegations. Ivey, a 38-year-old American citizen, responded that he did not in fact cheat to win the money. According to his lawyers, he used a technique called edge sorting to win. Both sides agree that Ivey was at the casino during the August tournament, and that he did win the money. “The issue is whether it amounted to cheating,” said Christopher Pymont, lawyer for Genting.

Also in October, yet another poker player faced controversy. Australian poker player Billy Jordanou was linked to a $70 million Ponzi scheme that also involved accountant Robert Zaia. Jordanou allegedly forged documents which he then used to secure loans from the Commonwealth Bank. The documents were forged in the name of 20 of Zaia’s wealthiest accounting clients. Zaia and Jordanou had been business partners in the past, and have been known to go on high-rolling spending sprees. Jordanou has participated in several high stakes tournaments in the past, including the 2013 Asian Pacific Poker Tour.