Leading 2008 WSOP Events

Unlike the early days of the competition when Texas Holdem was the only poker variant chosen to test the ability and skill of prospective poker champions, the World Series of Poker is constantly shifting the goal posts in an attempt to make the event more challenging for qualifiers.

WSOP Re-invents Itself

Each year new events are added and some removed and this not only keeps the series innovative and alive, but also allows competitors the chance to take to the tables for lesser buy-ins than the $10 000 Main Event.

Over its 40 year history, the tournament has grown exponentially by over 5000% – in 1968 there was only the one event, the Main Event, but by 2007 the tournament consisted of 55 events covering a range of poker variants including Pot Limit, Limit and No Limit Holdem and Omaha, 7 Card Stud, Omaha Hi/Lo Split 8 or better and Heads Up No Limit Holdem.

It was only in 2006 that the costly H.O.R.S.E event was added to the schedule at the request of the consummate poker professionals who felt that the Main Event was literally being overrun by amateur online qualifiers.  It proved to be one of the more successful additions and in 2007 two further H.OR.S.E events, with distinctly lower buy-ins, were added to the itinerary – these remain going in to 2008 !

World Champion or the Wheels of Fortune?

The pros are a tad put out that the Main Event winner of the WSOP is automatically, though unofficially, referred to as the World Champion of Poker – I guess it is a bit unfair for total amateurs like Moneymaker and Raymer to be mentioned in the same breath as the likes of Gus Hansen, Doyle Brunson, Phil Ivey, Phil Hellmuth and a whole posse of brilliant poker gurus, but that is what makes the WSOP and poker so darn popular!

The push for the H.O.R.S.E event had a lot to do with the fact that it is a more complex variant to master and players have to be accomplished at poker and cannot necessarily rely on luck, or good fortune. We may well see the $50 000 H.O.R.S.E fixture being the decider on who the new World Champion will be in the future.

The more important events, or World Championship events, of the 2008 WSOP all have buy-ins of $10 000 and it can be expected that the top professionals will fork out the moola for the opportunity of claiming the title and, of course, that elusive bracelet: