Dublin is not only the home of the Irish Open, it’s also home to Flutter HQ – the company that owns Irish Open event sponsors PokerStars and Paddy Power. It was thus a no-brainer to give the Flutter folk a chance to have their very own event at the Irish Open.
A total of 165 Flutter staff took part in the €5k freeroll which took place at the RDS venue on April 6. They didn’t just mosey over from the Flutter HQ where many are based, but all over Flutter’s giant empire – some from the Isle of Man, a few from London and a smattering of floating, live events types who didn’t seem to claim any kind of permanent home. Cedric Billot, Associate Director Live Events at PokerStars, performed welcome rites before everyone grabbed a Guinness and took their seats for the super-charged turbo event.
A number of senior Flutter folk joined in the fun including CEO Kevin Harrington, head online honcho Chris Straghalis, Commercial Director Scott Goodall, Head of Legal Dave Curtis, Flutter Brand and Creative Director Nicola Carey and Managing Director Mike Woodbridge. Sadly, all of the above were eliminated early on (by brave subordinates) and forced to appreciate the event from the rail.
With a min-cash worth €50 – and still an infinite number of hours to go before the bar closed – some cautious hanging-on-and-folding was very much in evidence as the tournament neared the bubble. Congrats though to PokerStars Live Events Customer Engagement Manager Willie Elliot for having the longest job title of anyone in the room and also for just squeezing into the money and his €50 reward. Making it to the final 25– and the money – also meant facing a gigantic big blind and big blind ante total of about a gazillion chips which despatched another 16 players in quick succession. The final table was star-studded – that is, PokerStars Ambassador Nick Walsh was still in before eventually succumbing in third place.
Congrats to all the Flutter folk who escaped their desks to compete – and biggest congrats of all to Dublin-based PokerStars Marketing Product Manager Noel Creighan who won a weighty silver-plated PokerStars spade trophy and €1,000.
Final table results
- Noel Creighan, Marketing Product Manager for PokerStars €1,000
- Mad Harper, Irish Open Media Coordinator €800
- Nick Walsh, PokerStars Ambassador, €550
- Anastasia Durucz, PokerStars Fraud Analyst, €450
- Evan Burke, Paddy Power TV Producer, €350
- Kieran Brophy, Soccer Product Owner for Paddy Power, €270
- Wayne Doyle, Fraud Strategy for Paddy Power, €200
- Nilay Kumar, Real Time Analyst for PokerStars, €150
- Tomas Carty, Customer Service Optimisation Specialist, €1150