The problem of deadlock, clock and time bank cards. Toby Stone speaks

The interview published by is from a few weeks ago Toby Stone, The Tournament Director of the Main Event of the European Poker Tour in Barcelona and has been the leading figure at PokerStars events when it comes to floorman and tournament directors for years.

Propio in Catalonia Stone answered the questions posed to him by Howard Swains, which were published on the PokerStars portal in early September.

From a regulatory perspective, a perfect organization

If we want to talk about managing a prestigious tournament that attracts the strongest players in the world and invests demanding buy-ins, the organization developed for the European Poker Tours is second to none.

But as with all jobs and professions, if you quit you are lost, and that goes without saying Changes To improve their own performance in the workplace, they are the salt for those who want to stay at a top level.

For this reason, tournament director Toby Stone’s staff always discusses with the players and tries, as much as possible, to accept suggestions that can improve, from tournament to tournament, the consistency of the same players who are ultimately the real protagonists of the action.

Time bank cards

The first aspect that is addressed in the interview is that of Time banks and from barn of tournaments that until a few years ago had become a real problem for players who would have liked a more efficient development of the most important parts of the tournament, bladder And Pre-bladder In particular, at times it seemed more like a litany than a poker tournament.

A few years ago the EPT decided to introduce the system Clock on the tables and Time bank cardsThis will speed up the decision-making times of each individual deployed player to whom he has been assigned 30 seconds for each game round, at the end of which it would have been possible to use more or less numerous cards, depending on the event, which would have granted an extension of another 30 seconds in the event of a decision, had proven more difficult than expected.

This is Stone’s analysis of the issue:

“The problem with time bank cards (hereafter TBC) was that they were confusing. We had different tournaments, different numbers of cards, sometimes we gave them the next day, sometimes we just gave them to the final table. Sometimes the final table was the new day, so we give it to them, right? The floormen rightly kept coming to me: “How many cards should be dealt today?” And how many for this tournament?” And I didn’t know either.

Toby Stone

The high roller problem

That’s why we decided to simplify everything now. We have several tournaments that use TBCs, including the Main Event starting on Day 3. And the Main Event is where you get them only six every day. It doesn’t matter how many players there are. It doesn’t matter when they reached the final table. From the third day onwards we distribute six every day. It’s easy.

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Then there are other events with a buy-in of more than €10,000 where we decide to spread them out from the start. What we do there is a little different, we give four or six from the start. It doesn’t matter what type of tournament it is, it’s the same. The only difference is that there are four or six at the beginning.

Another problem of the problem occurred Paris, in events of €25,000 when we even had it by giving 6 TBC and adding one every hour 20 or 25 TBC in crucial moments of tournaments, so the “Stall” risk it became obvious and indeed in some cases it actually was. So we decided to change four initially and deliver one every two hours, and things have improved significantly.

Is gridlock still a problem?

That’s not a problem for me. It’s the players’ tournamentthey are the ones who waste time.

It’s just that only a small percentage of players do it. Players who don’t do this start complaining. They see it as our problem, that we have to solve Rightly so, at this point in time.

Everything was written down SOP [la procedura operativa standard, essenzialmente i termini e le condizioni di gioco sull’EPT]. I have included the following in every SOP: -We operators, at any time, We can limit the amount of time that TB represents.. So if we understand that someone is unnecessarily blocking and interrupting the game, we can address that player.

It is good for events with a registration fee of 25,000 euros. To these players Don’t be sorry Really. For them everything is fine, everyone does it, it’s all part of the strategy. It gives them a little edge and they all do it. So it’s not a big deal for them. In all other tournaments, hell happens. Therefore, including this note in the SOP allows us to intervene without anyone being able to object.

The problem is guard at tournaments with larger fields of participants. There can be 15 tables and each table must have one person sitting at each table watching each player. As soon as you tell a player that they can no longer use cards or only have 10 seconds left, you need to make sure that this happens.

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