Punches over Poker!

The PokerStars.net 2009 tournament was eagerly awaited and was in full swing in the Philippines when a sudden halt was called to the tables. The reason for the stop to play was the Manny Pacquiao-Miguel Cotto fight! It probably doesn’t occur that often that one sporting event will be halted in favour of another. The card play was furious and was four days into the tournament when the fight was due to broadcast and it was a strange sight to see the players’ attention shift from focusing on the cards to cheering on the fighters.

Poker players are known for their focus and attention to play so to see so much emotion and excitement at a poker tournament was a bit of a strange experience. Everyone seemed quite happy to take a break from the match in order to enjoy the national boxer face up to his South American rival in the fight.

The fight was taking place in Las Vegas but this did not subdue the excitement in The Marquee of the Shangri-La Mactan Resort. The Philippine fighter Manny Pacquiao was fighting the Puerto Rican Cotto and the match continued through a brutal 12 rounds. All through the fight, the poker arena was filled with cheers for Pacquiao and everyone was clearly enjoying the match.

The crowd at the poker tournament was mixed nationality with a large number of Philippine players. This added to the number supporting Pacquiao and the chants of ‘Manny, Manny’ went up several times throughout the fight. No one seemed to mind that the final play for the championship was delayed by an hour due to the fight being aired. We are sure that the win for Pacquiao on a technical knockout definitely raised even the lowest of spirits.

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