Date
18 November 2017
Phil Ivey, 38, is a 10-time winner of the World Series of Poker tournament. Photo: CardsChat
Phil Ivey, 38, is a 10-time winner of the World Series of Poker tournament. Photo: CardsChat

US poker pro denies cheating to win US$12.4 million in casino

An American professional poker player insisted he didn’t cheat to win 7.7 million pounds (US$12.4 million) at a casino in London in 2012, and asked a court to order the casino’s owner to pay up, Bloomberg reported, citing his lawyer at the start of a trial.

Phil Ivey, 38, won the money playing a form of Baccarat called Punto Banco, using a technique known as edge sorting, at Genting Bhd.’s Crockfords casino in London in August 2012, but Genting refused to pay him, saying the practice is unfair, according to the report.

Ivey, a 10-time winner of the World Series of Poker tournament, sued Genting last year.

“There are legitimate strategies that may used by skilled players which have the purpose and effect of providing the player, rather than the casino, with the advantage on particular bets,” Richard Spearman, Ivey’s lawyer, said in court documents.

Spearman stressed that edge sorting is not dishonest. In edge sorting, a player tries to determine the value of a card that is face down at the casino table by observing subtle flaws such as distinct edges on the back of the card.

Ivey has won more than US$21 million from live tournaments alone, Bloomberg said, citing information on his website.

Genting is Southeast Asia’s largest casino operator with a market capitalization of over US$35 billion, according to Bloomberg data.

Ivey and three experts are scheduled to testify on a range of card playing techniques during the trial, the report said.

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RA/CG

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