India may not be as enthusiastic about poker as the rest of the world, but interest in poker is growing at a rapid pace. This is the reason why Raj Kundra, the founder of the Match Indian Poker League plans to launch yet another poker league in the country.
Online Team Poker League
Kundra plans to launch his new league under the banner of ‘Online Team Poker League’ but has plans to rename his league to ‘World Online Team Poker League’ and host an annual global championship every December. The Online Team Poker League’ will kick-start season 1 in July, while season 2 has already been scheduled for January 2018.
Kundra has already seen success with his Match Indian Poker League and wants to go bigger with his new league. The Online Team Poker League will work via a proprietary app used by the players. Currently there are 30 teams across India and all of them are competing for $1 million in prize money, which will be paid out to the top eight teams. There will also be monthly rankings and prizes. The winner of the Online Team Poker League will go on to battle it out with teams from other countries in future seasons. Negotiations have already begun for teams from Germany, Israel, Spain, Ireland, the US, and the UK.
Poker Leagues Keep Launching All Over India
A team poker league is no longer a new concept in the global poker scene. The first poker league to launch was the Global Poker League which has since been renamed as the Global Player League. Founded by Alex Dreyfus, it had a pretty weak first season in 2016 and has come to a standstill. Dreyfus also launched a GPL India league that was scheduled to take place last year but so far there has been no updates.
Businessman Raj Kundra has had his fair share of problems when it comes to organizing his poker league. In January 2018, he was involved in a legal dispute with one of the franchise owners in Match IPL. The franchise owner was accused of defaulting on payments and the owner shot back with an accusation that Match IPL was completely rigged.
Poker is still banned throughout most of India as it is viewed as a game of luck and not skill. However things are picking up in the Indian market as PokerStars, the biggest online poker website in the world is set to launch operations in second quarter of this year.