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Poker Pro Phil Ivey's Appeal Of Crockfords Ruling To Be Heard This Week

Gambling Legend Still Fighting For The £7.8m


Phil Ivey will have his appeal of a 2014 court decision in the United Kingdom heard this week, as he continues to fight to recover the £7.8m he won playing baccarat at Crockfords Casino in August 2012.

The 2014 High Court ruling went in favor of Genting Casinos, one of the largest casino operators in the world, but Ivey was granted permission to appeal back in January of last year.

The Court of Appeal judge said that Ivey’s grounds of appeal “raise an important question of law and have a real prospect of success.”

The appeal is scheduled to be heard on Wednesday, April 13 at 10 a.m. in London.

The 10-time World Series of Poker bracelet winner said in a statement that “it is not in my nature to cheat, which is why I was so bitterly disappointed by the judge’s decision [in 2014].”

“This wording from the Court of Appeal, that the grounds of our appeal raise an important question of law and have real prospects of success is quite simply the best news I’ve had since I won the £7.8m at Crockfords in August 2012,” Ivey added in the press release.

Ivey’s playing partner in the tainted baccarat sessions was Cheung Yin Sun, a known advantage player. Ivey and Sun were implementing a controversial technique called edge sorting, which is used to gain an edge on a casino. Crockfords was using defective cards, and Ivey and Sun were able to spot the manufacturing defects that created asymmetries on the backs of the cards.

Mathematically, players with this first card knowledge have an overall advantage of approximately 6.765 percent over the house. Both Ivey and Sun say it’s not cheating.

The case in London is nearly identical to Ivey and Sun’s situation in the U.S. state of New Jersey. Between April and August of 2012, they were able to win nearly $10 million from the Borgata casino in Atlantic City using edge sorting. That casino paid them the money, but since April 2014 it has been trying to recover the money. The case is still pending.

Ivey counter-sued the Borgata in July of last year, saying the casino took advantage of him by giving him lots of alcohol and using “pretty cocktail waitresses” to distract him.

As for Sun, she lost a court case last summer that pitted her against the Foxwoods casino in Connecticut. Sun also edge sorted there, and Foxwoods refused to pay her the money.

Tags: Phil Ivey,   Crockfords


6 years ago

Having an edge in any game is great for the player, but casinos have an edge too but they are excluded from that edge when the player has an edge as well. But, the casino agreed to the cards being used...that is their fault. The card sorting is really a manufacturing error and since the casino didn't know any better then they should take the loss and pay that man his money. They learned a lesson and can't blame anyone but themselves for agreeing to it. I look at it as a verbal binding agreement and it is a legal contract with witnesses.


6 years ago

Am I the only one who thinks the accomplice is more interesting in this particular context?


6 years ago

It's really interesting but...idk...dirty.

I imagine that any attorney worth their license could make an excellent argument based on the confidence factor. One literally has to con the dealer in order for this strategy/method to work. The con is a separate skill from noticing variances in how the cards are cut and betting accordingly.

That one element makes it seem awfully cut and dry to me.

I still want a movie of it. I'll still be team Ivey for poker, just not baccarat :P