For the first time ever, there’s a grassroots push to officially lobby Israel’s government to legalize poker. With the game enjoying record levels of popularity countrywide, Israel Poker Academy co-founder Stas Tishkevich is leading the charge to advocate for poker’s legalization in Israel.
Enjoying support from poker luminaries like Eli Elezra, funds are currently being raised via the I LOVE POKER – ISRAEL campaign that will be used towards lobbying the Knesset and Israeli government officials to legally allow Israelis to play poker without having to fly abroad.
You might not have heard of him before, but Shai Zurr could be Israel’s next poker superstar. After winning his first WSOP bracelet this past summer, he cracked Israel’s top 10 money list for all-time poker tournament winnings and his future looks brighter than ever.
A co-founder of the Israel Poker Academy, the story of how Zurr became a professional poker player is as interesting as it is unique. He opened up to us in this exclusive feature-length interview. Enjoy!
Anyone who has ever been to the WSOP knows the sounds and sights of the Rio’s hallways. Along with the throngs of poker players bustling about, there are numerous salespeople hawking items to passersby. It turns out that many of them are Israeli.
These people are more than just vendors though. They’re hardworking people, each with their own stories. Being American-Israeli myself, I decided to get to know them better and bring their stories to light. Perhaps you’ll look at them a bit differently after reading this article.
Though I’ve tried mightily to maintain my regular poker writing routine, I have been unsuccessful. The plain fact is that I can’t help but be affected by the war raging between Israel, where I live, and Hamas. I ask you, dear readers, to please indulge me as I describe what it’s been like for my bubble to burst. I hope my words strike a chord with you and that you’ll achieve a better understanding of what it’s been like to live under the constant threat of terror. Above all, I hope this conflict ends soon such that life can get back to normal.
With Passover in full swing, Jewish people the world over are celebrating their freedom. This freedom notwithstanding, for some reason it’s still illegal to play poker in Israel. In addition to summarizing the Jewish people’s and Israelis’ historical connections to the game of poker, this op-ed piece makes the case for finally legalizing poker in Israel.
Many offices and workspaces in the greater Tel Aviv area house thousands of Israelis employed in online poker-related ventures. Cardplayer Lifestyle brings you the story of these Israeli outfits, which keep bringing online poker to the world despite literally being surrounded by the sounds and sights of a real bona-fide war.