Malta Poker Festival and Master Classics of Poker fall victim to COVID-19


Two of Europe’s most popular live poker events have been shelved due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic affecting live festivals around the world.

malta-poker-festival-and-master-classics-of-poker-fall-victim-to-covid-19The Malta Poker Festival and Masters Classics of Poker will not take place in their regular venues this year after the Coronavirus pandemic put paid to two more massive live events.

The Masters Classics of Poker in Amsterdam used to be tied to a World Poker Tour Main Event in a festival which having been present at, I thought was a great festival. It was at one of the MCOP events that I met Felipe Ramos, now one of the faces of GGPoker, as he made it to the final table only to eventually miss out on the top prize.

As I interviewed him after the event, he expressed the opinion that, just like his good friend Neymar, second was nowhere and as good as 8th place to him, it was all about the victory.

It would seem like the MCOP team agree as unless the festival was to go ahead in full, they won’t be doing so. One of the longest running poker festivals in Europe will hope to return next year but the MCOP announcement was followed by plenty of poker players’ disappointed reactions on Twitter.

Having run for 28 years without interruption at the Holland Casino in Amsterdam, we hope that live poker at the venue will return safely the next time it is scheduled to, which is currently the day after Hallowe’en, on November 1st.

Scheduled for November, the Malta Poker Festival will now no longer be taking place in the Portomaso Casino either, although it will take place online. One of the biggest poker events of the year in Malta, it will be a sad knock to local trade but the decision has been made for health reasons by Event Director Ivonne Montealegre.

While plans are already under way to bring players back to the casino in 2021, indeed the same can be said for The Alpha tournament scheduled for 3rd – 8th February of next year, in addition to the Malta Poker Championships in May and Malta Poker Festival in November, the MPF will be replaced with an online event instead.

Details of this event haven’t been announced yet, but it’s been confirmed that they will be in September. While online simply won’t be the same as the festivities taking place at the Portomaso Casino, we hope that attendances are high to keep this much-loved festival running in years to come.