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Poker’s face-off

In recent years, small poker clubs have sprung up across the country, providing ideal venues for amateurs to hone their skills. But with the big casinos against them and their legal status uncertain, the card rooms' future looks far from secure

By David Flusfeder   July 2007

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I was at the Gutshot poker club in Clerkenwell in January on the day that Derek Kelly lost his court case. That afternoon the jury had decided that Kelly, then chairman of Gutshot Poker, had profited from a game of chance without holding a gaming licence, in contravention of the Gaming Act of 1968. Kelly, a stocky middle-aged Irishman who has the energy and charisma to turn most things his way, had failed to persuade the court that poker should be regarded in law as a game of skill rather…

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