Madrid Hosts for 888poker LIVE Stop for 2024 Madrid Hosts for 888poker LIVE Stop for 2024

The live poker season for 888poker is now underway with the first event of the year complete. The team from the Trip-8s headed to the Spanish capital of Madrid for the first stop on the 2024 schedule from January 22 – 29.

The first LIVE event of the year saw ten events on the week-long schedule with the highlight, as always, the €888 Main Event. The big game ran opening flights starting on Jan 25 and players had four Day 1 shots to make it to the prizes.

Other games on the 888poker LIVE Madrid schedule included a two-day Mystery bounty, a €2,000 high-roller game, a ladies’ event, and a multi-flight opener for €220. With the open events ranging from €65 on the low end (the Ladies played for €55) to €2k for the High Roller, there was something to fit every bankroll at the season opener.

In the end, the Main Event same more than 400 runners after four opening-day flights for prizes of more than €330k with the eventual winner Manuel Ledesma pocketing almost €60k of that after a heads-up deal.

Ambassadors Show Up, Fail to Deliver on the Felt

The 888poker Ambassadors in MadridAmong the players to show up in Madrid was a solid contingent from the 888poker ambassadorial team, but the poker gods were not kind to the home team. None of the contingent of patched pros managed to make the Main Event money, and two had particularly rough Day 2s.

The four ambassadors all made it through to Day 2 with chips, though for British pro Ian Simpson, it took several bullets on multiple starting days. Vivian Saliba and Lucia Navarro seemed singled out for Day 2 brutality, however, as they both hit the rail within smelling distance of the money spots with Saliba two off of a payday and Navarro stone-bubbling the cash.

While the poker was pretty brutal for Team 888poker in this series, it still looks to have been a positive experience. For his part, Simpson was glowing about the Madrid experience, despite his lack of success at the tables.

Big LIVE Plans for 2024

Amit Berkovich, VP Head of Poker at 888Pokerfuse recently sat down with Amit Berkovich, VP Head of Poker at 888 and, if one thing was clear from the discussion, it was that the operator plans to go big on the LIVE scene in 2024 and beyond. Madrid was just the first stop in a jam-packed season on the regular 888poker LIVE schedule with all the usual favorites returning with big 2024 festivals, but the operator has even more up its sleeve going forward.

In addition to the return of the main live series, the new UK Poker League (UKPL) has players in the United Kingdom excited for 2024. In partnership with Grosvenor Casinos, the UKPL has half a dozen stops planned for 2024 with very player-friendly structures and schedules in cities like London, Manchester, Leeds, Edinburgh, and Coventry.

Berkovich called the UK “a key market for us at 888” and praised the “geographical reach and fantastic on-the-ground experiences” that the partnership with Grosvenor Casinos brings to the UKPL, branding their partner as a “household name in the UK” for brick-and-mortar casinos.

Get a full look at what will be happening on the 888poker LIVE felt in the coming season from our guide and read the full interview with Berkovich here on fuse including details on another partnership with the Professional Fighting League (PFL), and there are additional discussions on the future of 888poker on PRO.

Upcoming Stops for 888poker LIVE

Stop Dates Tour
Edinburgh 13-18 February UKPL
Sevilla 19-25 February CNP
Luton 5-10 March UKPL
Bucharest 16-24 March 888poker LIVE

XL Winter Delivered Online Alternative to Madrid

Fans of 888poker who could not make the trip to Spain were, of course, watching the Madrid action live on 888pokerTV but they also had hot online action to keep them occupied. The XL Winter Festival ran its final games at the end of January on the 888poker online poker app alongside the final days of the Madrid Main.

When the blizzard of entries for the first big online series of 2024 cleared out, there was more than $2.1 million to play for with more than 20,000 entries recorded. The $1 million Mystery Bounty Main Event just managed to cap the guarantee with $1.033 million in the final prize pool.

All the exciting details for the 2024 XL Winter series can be found on the 888poker magazine with the detailed results at the bottom of the article.