In a video recently posted on YouTube, Nordine Bouya has accused Cedric Rossi and Jean-Paul Pierre Pasqualini of using signals to cheat at the grand finals of the Partouche Poker Tour 2009.
The four-minute video accuses the two players of using a simple code to communicate to each other the strength of their hands. They touched their heads to indicate an ace and their foreheads to indicate a king. In case of a queen, they scratched their eyes; and in case of a Jack, they scratched their nose. The sign for a ten was touching the mouth, a pair was holding the arm, and a nine or an eight was scratching the neck. The two players finished the tournament in the first and second places.
Someone posted about it on PokerEnLigne.com, a French online poker forum, after which it found its way to Twitter and TwoPlusTwo. The news caught so much attention that Jean-Paul Pierre Pasqualini decided to respond to the allegations.
According to a rough translation of his response in French, published on http://www.clubpoker.net, Pasqualini said that Groupe Partouche, the organizers of the event, has been conscientious enough to verify the hands played at the final table and demanded to know if Groupe Partouche had omitted to verify only the last four minutes. The player also pointed out that Groupe Partouche has been so serious about the monitoring that a player was disqualified the following year for cheating.
Stating that he did not even know Mr. Cedric Rossi before the tournament, the French player said: “Why these four minutes? Precisely why me? And more importantly, why leave this video now, why did not you release two years ago or three years? Perhaps because the author of the video did not then promotion to … I want to point out that sometimes it FITTING other video players scratching their nose, mouth, and, more generally, the face, which is also verified on the full rush.”
Pointing out that the final table was played behind closed doors and was under lights for over 18 hours, he said that “four minutes of video oriented construction must be put in perspective with the reality of a rush of more than eighteen hours. I know what I did. I won this tournament in an honest way.”
As expected, the allegations were rubbished, but players are not likely to lose interest in this story that fast. The video has already been viewed 26,000 times.