Ladies and Gents,
First of all, we wish you all a 2019 with lots of luck, fun and some bad beats (just to have something to talk about).
On the second day of this year, we would like to present the schedule for the Benelux Championship of Amateur Poker in Spa this February. After long discussions with Didier De Swert, the APAT management and the casino, we came up with a slightly changed concept.
When Tom Slikboer and his team introduced APAT in Belgium some years ago, low buy-in poker was something new in Casino’s. They immediately hit big numbers and became a huge success. APAT is about fun, meeting the poker family and playing poker in a professional environment for an affordable price.
In 2018 we still did all that, but we noticed that we did not get the 500 entries we had before. Last event we had some competition from Venlo in the same weekend and other events with a low buy in the week before and after in other casino’s in Belgium, Holland, Rozvadov, …
Therefore, we decided to go back to the drawing table. We analyzed what’s worked previously and what needed to be improved here in Belgium. Players seem to like our special events. Progressive bounty, Crazy Pineapple, Turbo Deepstack, … we are one of the organisations with the better side event numbers. We did take some risks with those events. We tried to introduce new varieties of Poker. Sometimes it worked, sometimes it didn’t. While the numbers in the main event were lower than before, the numbers in the side events continued to grow.
So, we’ve decided to give it a try and introduce some changes to the normal schedule for Spa. In February, the main event will be a 2-day Progressive Bounty. We will play a Tag Team side event on Friday, and on demand of the casino of Spa, we will add a Day 1a on Thursday.
The Tag Team is a concept that has been introduced in the Flemish part of Belgium by Pokahnights and gained a lot of success. The concept is being picked up by some other local poker clubs and is a guarantee of fun, which is exactly what we were looking for. Tag Team is played 5 Max, with teams of two players, sitting next to each other at the table. Action will change every street. One plays preflop, the other flop, … An extra button per team will be used that has to decide whose action it is to make. Teams cannot discuss a hand between each other. If your teammate decides to bluff the turn and is called, it is up to you to keep calm and fix the problem on the river. To attract more teams in this event, APAT Belgium will add 500 APAT Credits (€500 to spend on APAT events) to the first prize.
Next to that, the casino of Spa has decided to guarantee the events. This is a first for APAT Belgium and confirms the trust they have in us as a team and the APAT Community.