Betclic Everest Pulls Out Of Global Poker Masters Over Logo RestrictionFebruary 2, 2015 4:32 pm
For three years now Global Poker Index CEO Alex Dreyfus has been working towards his grand plan of launching a ‘Poker World Cup’ competition in which five players from eight countries will compete against one another whilst representing their national sides. Just a few weeks away from realizing his ambitious goal, however, the Frenchman has had his spirits dampened by none other than a French company which has pulled two of its sponsored pros from the Global Poker Masters (GPM) event for not allowing its players to wear their sponsored logo.
In blocking Fabrice Soulier (photo left) and Benjamin Pollack from competing in the $10,000 buy-in invitational competition due to take place on March 21st/22nd, Betclic Everest has consequently weakened a French team chosen on merit, and as the Dreyfus explains:
“Managers of [Betclic Everest] simply cut two of the best players from the France team because they could not accept to see their players represent France for two days without a 5cm2 logo on their chest. This reduces the team’s chances of winning and that’s a shame.”
Betclic’s actions seem all the more unsporting considering Team France’s other players, including Erwann Pecheux and Sylvain Loosli, have had no such complaint from their sponsored sites of Winamax, PMU and Pokerstars. Furthermore, Everest Poker has allowed its sponsored pro Sam Trickett to compete in the GPM event for Team UK, perhaps indicating the decision was one undertaken by a local management team, rather than the Group as a whole.
Unsurprisingly, the announcement was received with great frustration by Alex Dreyfus, who labeled Betclic Everest’s decision as “Absurd”, and blamed the “ridiculous situation” he finds himself in a result of French “idiocracy.” Nevertheless, the Global Poker Masters will still go ahead as scheduled, with perhaps Bertrand ‘ElkY’ Grospellier and Quentin Lecomte replacing the absent Betclic Everest players. There are further indications the ironic news is actually helping to increase interest in the event, and as Dreyfus explains:
“The tournament has actually gained more traction since this incident. I especially love the reaction of Unibet France, who said: ‘We can send you Quentin Lecomte to represent France, without stickers, without shirts and without pants.’ Or another player on the ClubPoker.net forum who said the only logo that matters is the French flag.”