Tony G Now Made Persona Non Grata in Russia

Tony G Now Made Persona Non Grata in RussiaFor the past week, the partypoker Million Sochi has been running at the Sochi Casino and Resort in Russia, with its showcase Main Event attracting an impressive 1,170 players. One player who isn’t taking part, though, even if he could have taken time off from his European Parliament duties, is Antanas “Tony G” Guoga, whose name has now been added to the country’s official blacklist.
News of the development was announced via the EPP Group twitter page, a centre-right political party which is the largest in the European Parliament, with the message reading:
“Putin’s blacklist is getting longer. Another @EPPGroup MEP banned from entering Russia. #Lithuania’s @TonyGuoga”
Tony G represents the Lithuanian Liberal Movement, and apparently he fell foul of Kremlin sensibilities after having a heated debate with a Russian diplomat during a European Parliament hearing. In the exchange, Guoga asserted his views concerning the need for Lithuania to be energy independent from Russia, and as a result he now joins an ever-increasing list of persona non grata in Russia, which includes everyone from politicians to musicians, including the likes of the Village People, Tina Turner and Madness.
While Tony G has since made light of the ban, suggesting that it was a response to his beating Russian player Rafael “Ralph” Perry at the 2006 Intercontinental Poker Championship, he has also stated what he believes to be the real reason for his ban:
“The more obvious reason for being blacklisted is speaking up for freedom and democracy, as my EPP Group in the European Parliament colleagues noted. That’s the price of politics and I’m ready to pay it. It’s a shame I wasn’t able to play in the recent partypoker Million event in Sochi.”
Guoga also highlighted that after taking down the 2007 Russian Poker Championship, he donated all of his $250k prize money to a Russian special needs orphanage. Taking a swipe at the country’s elite, he then added that if he had attended the current tournament in Sochi, Russian charities would have been the beneficiary of any prize money he may have earned, explaining:
“I would have won and given all the money to a local orphanage because sometimes the oligarchs forget that sharing is caring!”

Other news:   Negreanu Sheds Light on Tough Life of a Tournament Player

Poker News
Victor Ramdin and PokerStars: The End of a Long Road
04 Jun 2018
Victor Ramdin has parted company with PokerStars following 12 years representing the site as a sponsored ambassador. News of the Guyanan’s departure was made just prior to the start of this year’s World Series of Poker, which was seen as a necessary move in order to preempt any confusion created by his lack of an
Phil Ivey and Maurice Hawkins In The Ascendancy Ahead of 2018 WSOP
21 May 2018
Last week, Valentin Vornicu captured two gold ring at the World Series of Poker Circuit New Orleans to top the WSOP Circuit Ring Winners list with twelve titles. Whatever clear daylight the Californian player had between himself and Maurice Hawkins, however, has now been narrowed to just one after the Florida pro won the $2,200
09 May 2018
One of the stories to emerge from the 2017 World Series of Poker had nothing to do with winning a coveted gold bracelet, but instead involved a multi-million dollar dispute between King’s Casino owner Leon Tsoukernik and Aussie poker pro Matt Kirk, with the latter accusing the former of stiffing him out of $2 million
08 May 2018
Best selling author Maria Konnikova, famous for such books as How to Think Like Sherlock Holmes (2013) and The Confidence Game (2016), decided to turn her psychology and writing skills towards the subject of poker in early 2017. At the time, though, the Harvard University educated Ph.D. in psychology admitted to not even knowing how