Macau poker rooms suffer a blow after confusion over China policy

Macau poker industry has dealt with a serious blow this month with closure of two poker rooms and the cancellation of a new tournament series in the wake of a recent crackdown on online poker applications by the Chinese government.

The uncertainty over the future of poker in China would also add to the grief of World Series of Poker which was held last year for the first time in Sanya, China. The event is most likely to be cancelled this year.

Moreover, PokerStars Live Macau poker room at City of Dreams, host of the Macau Poker Cup, APPT Macau and the Asian Championship of Poker are also looking to shift their venue after Melco Resorts & Entertainment chose not to renew its contract.

Macau Millions main event attracted a record field of 2,499 players where, broken-hearted staff were removing tables just a day after the event concluded. It marked the end of PokerStars’ five-year tenure at City of Dreams after first moving there in 2013.

Meanwhile, Galaxy Macau has closed its poker room as well. A eight table room, Galaxy Macau was exclusively used for cash games rather than tournaments. It was re-launched last year but it failed to attract the local community. The Chinese authorities had announced that poker would not be recognized as a competitive sport and also banned the promotion of Texas Hold’em via social media applications.

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