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World Poker Tour – WPT

Ronald Norris
World Poker Tour

The World Poker Tour (also known as WPT) is the largest world poker event consisting of series of international poker tournaments that feature world’s top poker players. WPT was started in the US by TV producer Steven Lipscomb, who later became World Poker Tour Enterprises CEO.

The WPT is a series of international Texas Holdem tournaments, although most events are held in the United States. The TV show and worldwide broadcasts of the WPT led to a terrific increase in popularity of table game across the United States and many other countries of Europe. The major sponsors of the World Poker Tour are online poker rooms and land-based casinos. The internationally syndicated show is also co-hosted by actor Vince Van Patten and Mike Sexton, the winner of the WPT bracelet. Also Shana Hiatt served as sideline reporter and the show host during WPT’s first three seasons. Fourth season was hosted by Courtney Friel and fifth season was hosted by Sabina Gadecki. The hostesses of the sixth season were Kimberly Lansing and Layla Kayleigh. There were no announced hostess for the seventh season of the WPT, but Amanda Leatherman, a famous poker player and reported was hired to host live updates and tournament news on the World Poker Tour website.

The WPT debut season started in 2002 and ended in the beginning of 2003, culminating with the World Poker Tour Championship at the Bellagio Casino (Las Vegas) in the end of April 2003. The first season was broadcasted on the Travel Channel in April and May 2003. The WPT show made its TV debut in the beginning of 2004 on NBC. The hottest spot of the show was a special Battle of Champions tournament. Although first five seasons of World Poker Tour were aired on the Travel Channel, the sixth season moved to GSN in the beginning of 2008. However, after the first WPT tournament aired on GSN, WPTE (World Poker Tour Enterprises) announced that the tournament’s seventh season will be aired on Fox Sports Net.

The major attractiveness of the World Poker Tour and most large poker tournament is that anyone who can afford to pay the buy-in can compete for the main prize. Typically the WPT buy-in costs $2,500 – $25,000, but you can also get a free seat by winning one of satellite tournaments held by both online poker rooms and some land-based casinos.

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