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Poker News: March 24, 2006

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$5 Million Online Poker Tournament

45 Ongame Poker Network finalists will fly to Spain

Newly acquired by the Austrian public company Bet and Win, the Ongame Network including poker sites such as has wasted no time in launching The Ongame Network Poker Classic, a tournament with a record-breaking guaranteed prize pool of $5 million and at least $1 million for the final winner.

Whilst the prize pool is dwarfed by events such as the WSOP (this year's prize pool will be $70 million) Ongame claims that it will be the largest-ever guaranteed prize for an event that starts online. The Ongame Classic is an exclusive event where the online poker players can only enter through qualifying rounds held on Ongame Network operators' websites, such as

The new tournament will start as an online event and then pause when there are 45 players left. Those 45 will then receive airplane tickets to Barcelona, Spain, for the live final to battle it out on the green felt face to face - continuing with the same chip stacks they had when the online tournament paused.

The grand final will take place in the prestigious Casino de Barcelona during the weekend of September 30th - October 1st, 2006.

Ongame Network's operators are working together to host this innovative event for all their players. It will be a distinctive event that cuts through the clutter of mid-level poker tournaments offered by other individual poker sites.

Ongame says it is investing a significant and unprecedented amount in the event, and the players will see the benefit, because travel and hotel expenses will not be taken from the prize pool or players' pockets. For the equivalent entry fee of $5000+200, the top 45 players will receive both their tournament buy-in and a $5000 travel package.

Sit & Go and scheduled tournament-based qualifiers start on Monday, March 27th. Players can proceed through various levels which start at $1.

Patrick Selin, President of Ongame, said: "We are truly excited to be launching this Poker Classic tournament which we believe marks a milestone in the development of online poker. The guaranteed size of the prize pool available makes it an opportunity no true online poker fan can miss - and I'm sure beginners will be tempted to try their luck too."

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