Rob Yong is planning to bring back the UK Poker Championships (UKPC) in 2021 and he’s asking the poker community for some advice. The Dusk Till Dawn (DTD) owner and partypoker advisor posted the question in a tweet a few days ago and has received a good response.
The inaugural UKPC took place at DTD in Nottingham in 2014, in partnership with Sky Poker. It was last held in 2018, sponsored by partypoker LIVE. Now, Yong wants to revive the popular festival and he wants players to have an input as to the venue and tournament structures. The feedback on Twitter will help shape the entire schedule, and based on responses so far, most players support the idea of a UKPC comeback.
Players Share Ideas
As per Yong’s initial suggestion, the festival could adopt the UK Ireland Tour format with six stops, and a finale taking place at DTD. As for the buy-in, Yong likes to set a £500 entry fee for each stop, and then £1,000 for the Grand Final, but that’s still up for debate, and players can suggest their preferred price points.
The latest edition of the UKPC took place in partnership with partypoker LIVE. Yong is directly associated with partypoker as they have been partners for quite a long time.
While the brand will most likely continue its involvement with the UKPC when it makes a return this year, Yong said he is happy to work with anyone, and does not treat anyone as competitors. He said he once partnered with other operators in the past, such as Aspers, Genting, and LCI, and it was all good.
When he asked for inputs about potential venues for the stops, players came up with multiple suggestions, including Brighton, Blackpool, Liverpool, Luton, Glasgow, and Dublin.
Others also requested that the buy-ins be made more affordable, and that organizers create a schedule with limited registrations and rebuys. Some also wanted to see more mixed games being added to the schedule.
Lifting of Restrictions Could Be Delayed
Yong is keen on bringing back the UKPC this year, as the UK prepares to lift all COVID-19 related restrictions. The government has been easing restrictions over the past few months as part of its reopening roadmap.
The final stage will be on June 21, during which all businesses will be allowed to operate as normal, without limitations. However, the highly-anticipated “Freedom Day” could be delayed as UK cases of the new “Delta” variant, originally discovered in India, has increased in recent weeks. The government will make a decision over the next few days whether it will stick to the plan, or delay the lifting of restrictions.
Despite the current situation, Yong remains optimistic that the UK live poker scene will fully reopen anytime soon, paving the way for the return of the UKPC. On Monday, Grosvenor also announced that they’re bringing back their live GUKPT events starting July.
Huge Demand for Live Poker Action in UK
The responses to Yong’s solicitation of ideas indicate a huge interest among players to return to the live felts. Casinos and live poker venues across the UK were forced to close in March 2020 due to COVID-19. They were allowed to reopen with restrictions a few months later, but were ordered to shut their doors once again in November 2020 when the country went through another wave of lockdowns.
While players were still able to continue playing online for the duration of the lockdown with the leading operators hosting multiple big-guaranteed tournaments, many have been longing for live action to come back, because let’s admit it, the experience is so much different in a crowded, vibrant live poker room.
Last month, a number of casinos have begun accepting customers, though there are still limitations being implemented. Everyone is hoping for a return to normalcy, and the UK is heading in the right direction, despite some challenges that still need to be overcome.

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