PokerStars Organizes Chess & Poker Combo Event

3 years ago
PokerStars Organizes Chess & Poker Combo Event
02:02
03 Oct

To the uninitiated, poker and chess only have two things in common – kings and queens! For those in the know, however, the cross-over between the two games is much wider; calculation, strategic planning and the ability to sense when an opponent is uncomfortable, and therefore vulnerable.

Household chess names such as Alexander Grischuk, Almira Skripchenko and Jennifer Shahade are just as comfortable on poker’s green felt as they are on the 64 black-and-white squares of a chess board, and a whole host of poker-players came to the game through their love of chess – back-to-back WSOP bracelet winner Dan Harrington being perhaps the most famous.


Which brings me to today’s story – a chess & poker combo event which is rarely seen but hugely enjoyable for those with a foot in both doors.

The Isle of Man, to poker players, means the home of the PokerStars crew and an always packed UKIPTevent come October. Less well-known to the card-loving fraternity is that it simultaneously plays host to a Master-strength chess tournament which draws some of the world’s top players to the little island wedged between Englandand Irelandin the Irish Sea.

With the schedules unfortunately clashing, US ‘writer and gamesplayer’ Jennifer Shahade has come up with the novel idea of running a chess/poker tournament – allowing the best of the chess-players to show their skills (or not!) in the other Royal Game.


One of the most interesting players who will be taking part is Luxembourg’s Fiona Steil-Antoni, whose love of poker came from games against the world’s top chess players while relaxing from the rigours of tournament chess across the globe.

Now working as Press Officer for the Isle of Man Chess Masters – just one of many feted press roles the stunning young Luxembourger has landed recently – Fiona will take time out of her schedule to join in Shahade’s cleverly-devised tournament.

Jennifer and Fiona.jpg

Jennifer Shahade and Fiona Steil-Antoni (pic courtesy of Fiona)


With 6–rounds of blitz chess games (5 minutes plus 2 seconds per move increment per game) the total points scored will be translated into extra chips for the poker part of the event – the better your chess, the bigger your starting stack!

With the field boasting SuperNova Elites such as England’s Simon Ansell and Poland’s Radoslaw Jedynak (both chess-masters –Ansell an International Master and Jedynak now a Grandmaster of the game- who have found the poker world a lucrative cross-over point) as well as a host of Grandmasters and other titled chess-players, the play is sure to be fast and furious in more ways than one.

Check back here later for full results and photos from this interesting and exciting event.


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Andrew from Edinburgh, Scotland, is a professional journalist, international-titled chess master, and avid poker player.Read more

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