Casinos and poker Down Under take a hit during coronavirus

by William Brown Last Updated
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The world of live poker took a huge hit as the coronavirus pandemic spread across the world.

Casino Aus reports that what started in China soon spread to other parts of the world.

Everything from restaurants to clothing stores shut, while leisure activities ended and sports were stopped in their tracks.

Casinos were slow to close though, choosing to first try to implement new cleaning and safety measures in an attempt to stay open.

That quickly failed and casinos across Australia and New Zealand officially closed last week on the order of the government and health officials.

When the virus began spreading in the United States before Australia, casinos began to close and poker tournament operators postponed or cancelled most tournaments around the world.

Even if other countries were willing to host the tournaments, players would have had serious difficulties travelling to any location due to limited air travel, and few people from the United States would have been able to travel anywhere.

So, while the poker industry is just one of many that suffered at the hands of this pandemic, it is important for many players around the world.

A few poker tournaments continue to run across parts of the Asia-Pacific region.

The New Caledonia Poker Open just took place on the island of New Caledonia.

The French territory has remained fairly unaffected by the virus so far.

The tournament series started as scheduled on March 19 and concluded on March 29.

The venue has yet to publish the results.

The Asian Poker Tour seems to be on course to continue hosting tournaments.

It ran the APT Taiwan at the Chinese Texas Hold’em Poker Club in Taipei City from March 4-15 as scheduled.

The next stop will be APT Philippines at Resort World Manila, which is still scheduled to begin on April 27 until May 10.

Aussie tournaments on hold

All tournaments that had been scheduled to take place in Australia are on hold indefinitely, per government orders.

Tournament operators had no choice in the matter with the banning of public gatherings in excess of just a few people.

One of the hardest hits came for the Australian Poker Tour, which had long been looking forward to its Sydney stop at Bankstown Sports in New South Wales.

The April 1 to 5 series had a full schedule of 20 tournaments, complete with a Main Event that boasted $150,000 guaranteed money for a $175 buy-in.

The World Poker Tour had been planning a return to the Gold Coast for the WPT Deepstacks festival from April 24 to May 4.

The WPTDeepStacks tour is also set to hit the Gold Coast in September and it will be the fourth stop on the new 2020-21 season.

At this point, the World Poker Tour is hopeful that this event will happen, as it will lead into a WPT event on the main tour.

The first-ever WPT Australia will bring a $5,400 buy-in to the Star Gold Coast from October 1 to 5, though the entire series will take place from September 24 to October 6.

The Crown Poker Championship 2020 was also scheduled for April 15 to 27 at the Crown Melbourne.

The much-anticipated series had big guarantees set for several of the 16 events planned, though the CPC Main Event guarantee had not been made yet.

It matters little now though, as the series is cancelled for the foreseeable future.

It remains to be seen if it will be rescheduled.

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