Winamax Online Poker Pro Ivan Deyra Banned for Multi-Accounting

Piecing the clues together

French online poker room Winamax has banned one of its own pros, Ivan Deyra, for multi-accounting. Naturally, the poker site also terminated his sponsorship contract, which was up for renewal in June.

Deyra cheated in the €2,000 ($2,433) Super High Roller event during this month’s popular Winamax Series, a tournament which he won, pocketing €83,300 ($101,353). Last Friday, a poster on the French Club Poker message forum said that a Winamax employee told him that Deyra had multi-accounted. The poster confirmed the information with a second person.

Shortly thereafter, earlier posts from players who announced they received additional compensation from the tournament were shared in the thread, giving additional credence to the allegations.

Deyra had not played on his account, “ValueMerguez,” since two days after the tournament

Forum members added more clues, figuring out that Deyra had not played on his account, “ValueMerguez,” since two days after the tournament. Additionally, the screen name of the player that won the tournament was “MATIVANAO,” a combination of Deyra’s siblings’ and his own name. The jig was up.

Deyra comes clean

Once the poker community had him dead to rights, Deyra admitted that he multi-accounted during the tournament. In a statement, Deyra said: “There was an incident and I suspected that sooner or later the information was going to spread. It’s time for me to talk about reality.”

He explained that he played in several events in the Winamax Series on both his own account and his father’s – the MATIVANAO account – at the same time. After being eliminated in the Super High Roller on his personal account, Deyra ended up winning it with his dad’s.

Deyra apologized to Winamax, the other Winamax Team Pros, his opponents, and the poker community.

I recognize the cheating aspect of multi-accounting”

“Neither [Winamax] nor I would have wanted this but it is so,” he said. “Today, with hindsight I recognize the cheating aspect of multi-accounting.”

He went on to scold himself for being “naïve” and “oblivious,” saying that he is “searching within myself to dig into the reasons for this unforgivable and serious act.”

The poker room confiscated all the money Deyra won in the Super High Roller and the other Winamax Series events and redistributed it to the affected players in those tournaments.

Why did he do it?

Everyone who has played online poker for any length of time knows that multi-accounting is forbidden. Having two simultaneous entries in one tournament is advantage enough. If those entries end up at the same table together, the advantage multiplies, as the player will have knowledge of two sets of hole cards and can make plays to benefit one or both accounts. It is like colluding with oneself.

There is no valid reason for multi-accounting except the desire to cheat, but Deyra explained that when he reviewed his performance on Winamax since becoming a sponsored pro, he realized that he had not made money in three years. He suspected that the reason was because while others could change their nicknames every six months, he could not, putting him at a disadvantage.

Deyra believed he was at an information disadvantage. He could collect information on his opponents to better inform his decision making against them, but if they changed their screen names, that intel became useless. Since he couldn’t change his name, any insight his opponents collected on him was always relevant.

He decided to try playing on his father’s account to test his theory, to see if using a “no-name” account would make other players’ blind to his style of play. It looks like it might have worked, but it was cheating nonetheless and now Deyra must suffer the consequences.

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