Not Guilty: Chris Battenfield Almost Had his WSOPC Ring Taken Away
In September of this year, it became known about the joint project of poker giants WPN, WPT Global and GTO Wizard – new tools GTO Reports and Fair Play Check for quick detection of cheaters at online tables. Most of the players in the poker community took the news positively, with some well-known regulars (such as Phil Galfond) also welcoming the initiative.
A couple of weeks later, the Fair Play Check function brought the first results – Mike Holtz accused a player named Chris Battenfield of cheating. In August, Chris defeated PokerGO commentator Jeff Platt in a heads-up for a WSOPC ring and over $130,000 in prize money.
Holtz downloaded 5 hands in the Fair Play Check and received confirmation – someone allegedly already analyzed all of those hands. After that, the scandal was blown up on "X" (Twitter), Chris's account on WSOP.com was blocked, and the poker platform together with GTO Wizard started an investigation.
As often happens, almost no one waited for the results of the investigation – there were a lot of hate comments about Battenfield on social networks and demands to take away the championship ring from him along with the winnings. But on October 17, the player was unbanned from WSOP.com and all charges were dropped. As it turned out, the new function in GTO Wizard "doesn't work perfectly yet".
Several famous poker players have already publicly apologized to Chris for their hasty conclusions. Among them is media regular Matt Berkey, who has actively promoted the topic of the Fair Play Check in his podcasts.
“I'm a bit regretful that I was one of the first to call Battenfield a potential fraud. In fact, we have no idea how often a new feature in the GTO Wizard can mistakenly produce incorrect results,” Berkey says.
Well, if the Fair Play Check option is not fixed soon, we can safely expect more episodes of accusations/apologies. But this only applies to public players – poker operators do not disclose any details of investigations on social networks.