Mickey May celebrates 17 years of the Irish Open

Danish photographer Mickey May first started covering the Irish Open in 2006. To celebrate next month’s event, we asked her to choose a dozen images from over the years and say a bit about what they mean to her:

Vincent Melinn was my first very Irish Open champion! He won the event in 2006 and he was from Ireland too. It was a great moment. I had no idea back then that the Irish Open would become such an important part of my life. It has always been – and remains – my favourite poker tournament.

2008: I loved seeing Neil Channing win. He is a good friend of mine, and of course we had a great celebration afterwards. Here he is, heads-up against Donal Norton.

2022: Here’s a picture of the bosses! JP and Paul O’Reilly are fantastic people to work for. No wonder we all keep coming back! (and I’m not just saying that!)

2019: I like doing slightly more “arty” pics like this.

2022: Taking shots like this keeps the images interesting at an event. It’s about the moment! And interesting angles get your attention.

2019: The final table – always filmed. It’s great that people all over the world can follow the Irish Open wherever they are.

2022: The Irish Open has always been and remains my favourite poker tournament to cover. Always such a great rail with people having fun and really getting into it.

2022: The partying always goes late at the Irish Open

2019: Green is in the air ..

2022: What a stare down …

2022: Hippodrome Ambassador Chris Da-silva using his third eye: sometimes you are lucky but most of the time you must remain patient and wait for that shot you know is coming.

2010: This is Marty Smyth on his stag do with the late Liam Flood and their “leprechaun” friend. It was really a fun night! Marty won the Irish Open in 2007.

It’s been a real privilege to work at the Irish Open and I’ve made so many lifelong friends at the event. It’s probably the last tournament that still has grains from the old days. The atmosphere is always great, good fun, everyone is in town, and you look forward seeing everybody. I can’t wait for it to happen again!