2021 Aussie Millions on Hold – 2020 WSOP Main Event Announced
The COVID-19 pandemic has devastated live poker. The majority of live poker events in 2020 have been either canceled or moved online. It now appears that this trend is continuing into 2021. Aussie Millions, one of the world’s premier live poker tournaments, is on hold. The casino is citing public safety as the main reason.
Meanwhile, an event we assumed was canceled will now happen but differently than in the past. The 2020 World Series of Poker Main Event will still happen this year. However, the event will now be a hybrid live and online poker event that will take place at multiple locations live and online.
Aussie Millions Placed on Hold
Last week, Crown Melbourne issued a press release announcing that Aussie Millions will be put on hold due to the ongoing pandemic. Normally, Aussie Millions is one of the first major live poker tournament series of the year. With the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure now defunct, Aussie Millions would have been the first major event in 2021. That’s not happening now.
Crown Melbourne hits the ⏸ button on the 2021 edition of Aussie Millions https://t.co/Wl5KqJL5W4
— Kevin Mathers (@Kevmath) November 14, 2020
According to Crown, “The health and safety of our community – including our employees, guests, and players – is Crown Melbourne’s number one priority. As the COVID-19 situation evolves, so too will Crown’s response, ensuring we remain in line with government mandates and expert health advice.”
Aussie Millions is not the only tournament on hold. All live tournaments are on hold until further notice. The casino has halted all poker tournaments dating back to late March when the pandemic was first ramping up. Now that COVID-19 cases are again spiking worldwide, it is not prudent to play live poker.
WSOP Main Event Will Happen as a Hybrid Events
Earlier this year, the WSOP Online was presumed to replace the 2020 WSOP Main Event. The winner of that series’ Main Event was assumed to be the de facto World Champion for this year. Now, WSOP officials have announced that the 2020 World Series of Poker Main Event will be played. The event will become a hybrid online poker event with the final tables playing out in a live setting.
On Friday, WSOP officials revealed plans for the 2020 WSOP Main Event. The event will be played at both WSOP.com in the United States and GGPoker internationally. The international leg of the Main Event will kick off on November 29 while the WSOP.com leg will play out on December 13th.
Play will begin online then shift to live play before culminating in a heads up match between the US and international finalists.https://t.co/IaSgypAHoP
— pokerfuse (@pokerfuse) November 16, 2020
The GGPoker leg will have three starting days. Day 1A will play on November 29. Day1B starts on December 5th while Day 1C will commence on December 6th. The remaining players from the three starting flights will play to a final table on December 7th.
Over at WSOP.com in Nevada and New Jersey, the event will have a single starting day on December 13th. Day 2 will be December 14th and players will battle to the final table.
Final Tables to Play Out Live
Final tables for both legs of the event will play out in a live setting. For the GGPoker leg, the final table players will go to King’s Casino in Rozvadov on December 15th and play to a winner. For the WSOP.com leg, players will go to the Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas on December 28th and play to a winner.
The winners of both live final tables will meet at the Rio on December 30th and play a heads-up match to determine a World Champion of Poker. The winner of this match will receive the Championship bracelet along with a $1 million Winner Takes All prize. This is in addition to any prize money won at the final table.
There are several caveats to this schedule. The main concern is the pandemic. If restrictions are enacted that either limit travel or the assembly of players, the finals may be moved online. Also, if the winner of the GGPoker leg of the event is under 21, the event will be moved to a different location to allow the underage player to compete.
While most people would have liked to see more live bracelets in 2020, we will at least get to continue the tradition of crowning a World Champion of Poker. Hopefully, things will return to somewhat normal by next summer so that we can see a live 2021 World Series of Poker.
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