https://matchpokerfed.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/12/IMG_8415.jpg 1280 1920 Varun Goenka https://matchpokerfed.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/02/ifmp-2021-header-logo.png Varun Goenka2021-12-31 09:31:232021-12-31 09:31:232021 Review – A Year of Challenges and Progress
2021 saw IFMP make considerable progress after a rather quiet pandemic hit 2020. With the constantly changing situation caused by Covid, we didn’t want to be dependent on live events for Match Poker activity this year. We therefore decided to run virtual qualifiers for the 2021 Nations Cup Finals for our member nations in Asia and Europe. Being the world’s only recognised digital sport, Match Poker has the unique advantage of digital gameplay as compared to other conventional sports which are more physical in nature. We used this to our advantage and re-created the live Match Poker environment linking a video conference platform in with Match Poker gameplay, thus enabling the athletes to see and talk with each other just like they would at a live event, while playing Match Poker for their nation.
We ran a total of 10 qualifiers, which produced 5 Asian and 6 European qualifiers who will attempt to stop Ukraine from wining their 3rd World Championship in a row! 200 unique hands of Match Poker were played in each qualifier, giving us 2000 hands played by 25 participating nations. Over 200 athletes competed for their nations, testing themselves in this skill-based format with the aim of securing a spot at the finals. The qualified nations are India, Israel, Kazakhstan, Mongolia and Singapore from Asia, with Austria, Germany, Iceland, Italy, Macedonia and Switzerland from Europe. The virtual qualifiers allowed many nations, who have previously not been able to participate in live events, to play, compete and experience Match Poker. It has been fantastic to see our sport grow and reach so many new countries this year.
One prime example of this effect is the birth of the Mongolian National Match Poker League! 12 teams participated in the first season of the league, which took place on 11th and 12th December in Ulaanbaatar and saw 500 hands played across the 2 match days. Every team had atleast one male and one female member in their squad, across various age groups once again reinforcing that Match Poker is a fully inclusive sport. Team Pokerfriends were crowned Champions with 749.5 points, Team Shrup came 2nd with 723 points and Team Megamind was 3rd with 710 points. Trophies, medals and prize money was awarded to the top 3 finishing teams and top 3 individual players. The Mongolian NF will use this event and the content captured to approach their National Olympic Committee (NOC) and National Sports Authority (NSA) for the formal recognition of Match Poker as a sport in Mongolia and for their national federation as a national governing body of sport, linked to IFMP as the global representative.
IFMP’s observer membership of GAISF was extended for another 2 years as we continue our fight for full recognition. One of the main aims of encouraging local Match Poker activity by way of national leagues was to be able to evidence to the NOC and NSA of your nation that we are a sport, recognised globally, played digitally, and are not anything like conventional gaming or gambling. Once the authorities see it in action, being played in teams, without the presence of physical cards or chips, they will better understand what we have been trying to explain to them for so long. We are hopeful that this all will work to our advantage and we can provide the GAISF membership council with plenty of new national recognition certificates in the coming year.
We are working hard towards a packed events calendar for 2022, with a Champions League style finale event for our many national league champions, a Global University Challenge involving student Match Poker teams from universities and colleges across the globe, and of course our Continental Championships (Asia, Europe, America’s) all culminating in a Nations Cup Final at the end of the year. There have been a few nations that have expressed their desire to host an event and we are evaluating our options, and would encourage other nations who are interested to let us know at the earliest.
Finally can we take this opportunity to wish you all a wonderful holiday period. Stay safe, take care of yourself and your loved ones and let’s make 2022 the year where Match Poker really takes off! Happy Holidays and wish you a fantastic New Year!
https://matchpokerfed.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/07/Screenshot-2021-07-12-at-11.33.59-AM.jpg 452 789 Varun Goenka https://matchpokerfed.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/02/ifmp-2021-header-logo.png Varun Goenka2021-07-12 10:40:102021-07-12 12:04:04How do you train for the Match Poker Nations Cup? Team Germany Shares their Secret!
Team Germany might not have made it to the Finals during this round of qualifiers for the Nations Cup, but their strong second place finish still begs the question “How do they train for Match Poker?” Well, we are going to spill the beans with you in this article. Team Germany is sharing their secret on how they train as a team and improve their poker game together in a group.
The Germans use a platform called Poker Castle. It is an interactive tool that allows a poker coach to train more than one player at a time. So, pretty much perfect for a Match Poker team. While players are playing random or custom created hands, the coach can actually see the cards of the players. This really helps to get behind the thought process of your teammates.
“Normally, poker is about making the decisions with the highest chip EV (with ICM adaptations in tournament poker, if necessary),” team coach Daniel Eylenfeldt explains, “In the current Match Poker scoring system, however, the overall chips do not play a role. For example, it is often more important to win many small pots than one big one. Therefore, various adjustments have to be made in order to be successful in this system. When we train with the German team via Poker Castle, we usually play the hands as in the normal cash game, but in the replay function we then consider which adaptations would have made sense in Match Poker.”
So, how does it work?
After a hand has concluded, it is discussed in the Replay. During this phase, all participants can see the cards and the coach clicks through the action while interacting with the students via Discord, Zoom or any other third party communication platform.
Poker Castle platform
Without a platform like this teams are stuck with theory sessions and/or home games. It is often difficult to get into a flow and really see why and how a player was taking as long as they did for a decision. However, using Poker Castle means that the coach can observe the hand selection and decision making of the students in real time. It also means that the coach can see the learning progress of the players across the different sessions they play. The coach can even “Like” a play, which is obviously only visible to the player who’s move was praised. Poker Castle offers a range viewer tool where the coach can go through different options for the hand selection or explore the opponents’ ranges.
Weekly Preparation Sessions
Team Germany made sure to meet for training sessions at least once a week from a couple of months before the competition date, closer to the event they even trained twice a week for 3 hours each time. That is a lot of high intensity coaching as a team and their close second place finish behind Austria in the Qualifiers proves its value.
In Poker Castle you can choose to play random hands or custom hands and while it was mainly random hands that were played during the coaching sessions, team coach Daniel Eylenfeldt often used actual hands from his own online sessions that he deemed interesting enough.
Team Germany is made up of Jan Heitmann, Timm Albrecht, Niklas Andrews, Alexander Kleppe, Kai Rieche, Stefanie Haffke, Mila Monroe, Julie Schumacher, Arash Fazeli and Daniel Eylenfeldt. During the time the team prepared for the competition, the members really learned to appreciate working with Poker Castle. Especially the fact that once you fold you can see other players cards, which is an incredible feature to learn in a group. Poker Castle is not exclusive to the German team. Any team, study or staking group is welcome to check it out and start training with it.
They play their next qualifier on 7th August and will no doubt be putting in the hours on training and strategy in the weeks leading up to it, with the aim of sealing their spot in the Nations Cup Finals. For more information please visit www.pokercastle.net
https://matchpokerfed.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/10/European-Nations-Cup-2019-PM-Ukraine_003.jpg 1241 1860 Varun Goenka https://matchpokerfed.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/02/ifmp-2021-header-logo.png Varun Goenka2021-03-16 08:11:402021-03-16 08:11:40The First Match Poker World Champions, Germany, are ready for 2021
Introducing the German national Match Poker squad for the upcoming European qualifiers, leading up to the Nations Cup Finals 2021.
Name: Daniel Eylenfeldt
Profession: Poker Coach / Professional Poker Player
Bio: I’ve been playing poker regularly since 2007. I think it’s great that even though it’s been around for so long, it’s still possible to improve your poker game. During my poker coaching in particular, I find it very rewarding to watch my students continuously improve.
Name: Jan Heitmann
Profession: Keynote Speaker and Trainer
Started playing: 1996
Bio: I fell in love with poker quite early, when it was still very underground in Germany. During my studies at university (management), I played more regularly. Once I got my diploma in September 2003, I travelled around Europe for a year, playing poker in Barcelona, Amsterdam, Vienna, London, etc., culminating in my first WSOP in 2004 and turned professional after that. I had quite a long and successful career, spanning 15 years, including doing lots of promotional work for poker in Germany (as a commentator, trainer for celebrities and a part of Team PokerStars Germany). These days poker is still a big part of my life, but in a very different way. I use poker as a model for decision making, holding keynote talks and trainings for managers, leaders and decision makers.
Name: Timm Albrecht
Profession: Business, Life and Poker Coach and a Professional Poker Player
Bio: I play poker since 13 years, mostly online cash games but also MTTs and SnGs. I love discussions, books, videos and quizzes about poker and want to travel playing all over the world.
Name: Kai Rieche
Bio: Started around 20 years ago in my hometown of Berlin and still playing the game. Had so many good times with this game around the world, so it is in my opinion still the most beautiful hobby. I hope we can play live soon again, so long let’s do it online. Looking forward to the first qualification round.
Name: Niklas Andrews
Profession: Psychology student
Bio: I’ve been playing poker for about 3 years, focusing on cash games since the beginning. What I love the most about poker is the complexity of the game. The fact that the room for improvement seems to be endless is why I keep falling in love with poker.
Name: Stefanie Haffke
Profession: Civil Engineer
Bio: I have about 4 years of experience in playing poker as a mind sport. Mostly live, what I definitely prefer. As an engineer I love solving puzzles. That combined with playing a game, poker is my absolute favourite.
Name: Arash Fazeli
Profession: IT Specialist / electronics technician
Bio: I have been playing poker since 2003. I’m a poker coach and passionate tournament player. Heads-up is my favourite discipline. I love Poker… You grow with your decisions and keep developing. The mixture of strategic thinking and tactical action, taking incomplete information into account, is what makes this game so fascinating.
Name: Alexander Kleppe
Profession: IT architect and project manager
Bio: Alexander is 39 years old and loves to play poker – has been for over 20 years, especially online cash games and tournaments, as well as the German Heads-up live championship. He works as an IT architect & project manager and plays for the German Nations Cup Team since 2019. Alex loves the idea of poker as a mind sport along with the international challenges with players from different nations and wants to see Match Poker advancing to the next level of recognition.
https://matchpokerfed.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/07/Stephan_Kalhamer_DPSB_Präsident.jpg 768 1024 Varun Goenka https://matchpokerfed.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/02/ifmp-2021-header-logo.png Varun Goenka2019-07-22 08:33:002019-08-30 10:23:27Pluribus by Stephan Kalhamer
The Latin translation corresponds to “with several” I would say. Addressed here specifically is the poker game against several opponents probably. A regular poker set up: No Limit Texas Holdem at a table of six. A fortress of human decision-making power now attacked by the algorithm “pluribus”. And as we learned – since July 11th, 2019 – “it” was victorious.
After Chess and Go, we are now inferior in the perhaps most complex classic mental exercise of artificial intelligence as “genius human”.
What a insult.
What a development!
How can this be classified or understood in a nutshell?
After the great victory of Deep Blue over Garry Kasparov in 1996, the immense ambition to create better chess machines than world chess champions gave way to the vision of making computers successful on the free market. Chess is caught on his board. There are limits of all kinds. The field. The figures. The moves. All truth, every information, is open in itself. It’s “only” a question, who can see how comprehensively, judge and decide accordingly?
It’s completely different in poker. Poker is much more human than chess. “Doing the wrong thing, but at the right moment” turns a good one into an excellent poker player.
How should a machine even understand the meaning of this deep quote from the movie “Cincinnati Kid”? With pitfalls like these developers were challenged worldwide – and now it is solved.
It took place step by step.
In the spring of 2011, my colleague Stefan Rapp and I competed against the “Fat Tony” program, led by Prof. Dr. Fürnkranz at the University of Darmstadt. The software was coded for “Limit Poker 1vs1”. The match was set up by mirrored cards, meaning that team computer was faced with the same decisions as the human team.
Stefan and I won back then. Although Fat Tony had a much, much easier setup than pluribus today.
Tony never had to decide how high – but only if it bets. This is a huge difference. Because zero or one is the core of computers, but to make an offer creatively, that’s something human! On top of that Tony had the advantage of a duel one-on-one, with no heated, irrational interaction between different opponents at the same time. “Man on man” is way easier to categorize than a wild marketplace, where offers sometimes simply are made due to a personal reaction from a third party.
Human poker players beat a whopping 15 years after Deep Blue its poker playing colleagues in their home game by human judgment. I was pretty sure that it would remain that way for a long time. Just eight years later, however, I am disproved. Pluribus has taken all hurdles. How was that possible?
Pluribus – in contrast to its even very considerable predecessors – did not learn from humans playing poker.
The “newborn little Pluribus” was just presented the complete set of rules including the aim of the game. From there on, the program was on its own. Pluribus played and played against versions of himself. In a few days it had billions of hands of experience. Being a massive looser against virtually every amateur player during his first billions of gambling decisions, it now beats everything and everyone by virtue of his constant learning process.
It should give us some encouragement.: Getting up again and again as an improved version of himself – this pays off apparently.
Of course, it is also frightening: Where is all this leading to, if machines even play poker better than we do?
Mathematic as the language of logic is – as so often – the winner.
We should realize that, accept that and start building up reasonably for the future on this basis.
Most important is your own attitude to consciousness and consequence.
Let us be aware of what mathematics can do and, consequently, let’s be curious about it.
If it were still valid today to say that mathematicians are sitting only in their own ivory towers anyway, then it would also be correct to say: The world simply is an ivory tower.
About the author: Stephan Kalhamer
Stephan Kalhamer is a mathematician and successful poker coach. In 2011 he led the German team to the title of world champion and in 2013 to the EM title of amateur. In addition, since 2009 he is honorary president of the German Poker Federation and author of several books on the subject of “poker”. He acts as a speaker and advises companies.
The original article was written in German by Stephan and published here – http://summa.stiftungrechnen.de/pluribus/
https://matchpokerfed.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/12/Deutscher-Meister-DPSB-89suited-München-PM.jpg 719 1024 Varun Goenka https://matchpokerfed.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/02/ifmp-2021-header-logo.png Varun Goenka2016-12-01 07:20:582017-02-14 10:47:067th Playoffs for the DPSB HeadsUp Live Liga 2016
IFP’s German national federation, Deutsche Poker SportBund (DPSB), just completed its 7th DPSB HeadsUp national event and crowned 89suited Poker München as the winner!
The final was held in Ingolstadt (Bavaria) this time with the 16 qualified teams from all over Germany.
In the group stage (http://dpsb.org/playoffs-season-7/) the teams played three matches against every opponent to determine the first two spots in the group which would advance to the quarter finals.
From then on they played knock out matches. (http://dpsb.org/playoffs-season-7-k-o-phase/)
Our new Champion 89suited Poker München won their group even though they lost their very first match. From then on they won the next five consecutive matches.
Especially the captian of this team – Gerhard Schwarz – had an incredible weekend winning 15 out of 17 headsup matches (both losses in the group stage).
89suited Poker München is one of the teams playing the DPSB HeadsUp Live Liga from the very beginning on.
Some media links: