“It also demonstrates what a close-knit community those who work in the casino business are. We share ideas, we innovate and also contribute massively to our individual economies. Shouting about what we do can only benefit the venues and the thousands who work
within them.” The worldwide casino ‘community’ is why the Strategy Board of the National Casino Forum decided to commit ‘unequivocally’ to retaining strong ties to Europe and announced last year it will continue to work within the ECA ‘to promote the modernisation of the regulated casino industry at national and international levels’. Said Tracy: “I can think of few other sectors where so many of us have worked and developed strong ties and friendships across Europe and further afield. Retaining those links can only benefit the
“The NCF’s vision is to make the UK the most attractive destination in the world for casino gaming, not only for the customers but for those
from abroad who want to experience working here.” There are three key areas that the competitors will be judged on. Murat Salih, gaming floor manager at The Hippodrome, explains what they are: Technical Skill – We are looking to see if the competitor can cut chips correctly, use both hands appropriately and use technical equipment properly. This includes pushing multiple stacks, chip Mattias Luchesisni, who won the EDC title for the UK in 2015 positioning, ball spinning and table clearing. For blackjack, we are looking for smooth, neat dealing
and handling bets on the boxes.
Game Control – Good game security is an important aspect of being a top dealer. The croupier has to
calculate payouts accurately, show clean hands, protect their winning areas; and they must have an accurate knowledge of the games they are dealing. In this area, we are judging whether the croupier is in control of all aspects of their game. We are looking for clear, loud commentary; good float management and focus on table activity.
Hospitality – A very important aspect of the job, customer service is a key skill for an excellent croupier. We are judging the competitors on professionalism, politeness, how they greet customers and interact with them. Body language is also important for good customer service; we will be looking at the croupier’s non-verbal communications as well as their verbal ones. The winner should be able to respond actively to meet customer needs, even exceeding customer expectations when dealing to them.
Five-a-side There will be five side events during the championships.
Best Chipper Who is the fastest chipper (chip and stack) of 300 chips?
Best Card Handler Who draws the fastest initial deal at Blackjack?
Best Cutting Chips Who will be the best cutting stacks into fractions?
Best Pushing Stacks Who can push two to eight stacks the fastest from one side of the table to the other?
Best mathematician Who can calculate the fastest AR Manhattan bets?
The outcome of the side events has no effect on the main championship That’s Entertainment! Outside the competition there will be entertainment on the Hippodrome’s cabaret stage and pop up performances throughout the venue by BELAIR and Shane Hampsheir alongside the Hippodrome’s very own Lola’s Showgirls.
Images (top right) UK hopes in their hands Leading the UK charge at the EDC will be Jamie Cummins and (above left) from the Ritz Club and first runner-up Stuart McCallum from Les Ambassadeurs