Online Poker to Fund National Chess Team in Russia?

Billionaire Vasily Anisimov is hoping the legalisation of online poker in Russia could increase the budgets for the country's national sports entities

The legalisation of online poker in Russia may end up having a positive impact on the budgest of their national sports entities it has been reported in Sporting News.

President Putin recently requested a study to see how best state run lotteries (potentially including sports betting) could increase revenues, with a view to increase the budgets to national sports teams.

Online poker in Russia was only effectively outlawed at the end of last year after several years of it being deemed a "grey area", with Russian ISP's frequently  blocking access to online poker sites without any specific legislation - so such a swift reintroduction would come as a pleasant suprise to online players affected by last year's legislation.

Proposed legislation regarding the return of online poker in Russia has been drafted by an associated of State Lotteries in Russia, lead by self-made multi-billionaire, Vasily Anisimov. In accordance with Putin's intentions, revenues accrued from online poker would go towards funding several entities, including the nation's Chess Federation, with reports estimating that as much as $12.5m could be distibuted to the Chess Federation from online poker revenues.

Both bricks and mortar and online poker are incredibly popular in Russia. In last year's SCOOP series of tournaments over at PokerStars, Russia fielded almost 63,000 participants, the most of any country, with well over 200,000 Russian players competeing in the Micro Millions tournaments later in the year. There are also plenty of successful highstakes  online Russian poker pros including Alex "PostflopAction" Kostritsyn, Trueteller, and forhayley




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