Team PokerStars Pro signs Thew, Keiner

teampro-thumb.JPGThey say you can tell a lot about a man by the way he treats dogs and bloggers. While I'm not entirely sure about how English poker pro Julian Thew would feel about my little blind mutt, I am happy to report Team PokerStars Pro is signing a pretty good guy.

The man from Nottingham has been on the poker circuit for what seems like forever. I met him during the first season of the EPT and he's been both a familiar and tough player on the tour ever since. Today it was announced Thew has been signed to poker's most elite stable of players.

"I'm thrilled to have been offered a spot on Team PokerStars Pro and I look forward to promoting the brand on my travels throughout the year," Thew said.

Thew is one of the most respected players around. He's won nearly $2.5 million during his career, a big chunk of it coming during season 4 of the EPT. That's when he took down EPT Baden for €670,800. Since then Thew has become the leading British player on the EPT tournament leader board. He currently sits in 12th place overall.

Thew joins four other members of Team PokerStars Pro UK: John Duthie, Vicky Coren, Jude Ainsworth and JP Kelly. Look for Thew tomorrow when the UKIPT hits Manchester.

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Meanwhile, a few countries away, the Germans have signed up another familiar face for Team PokerStars Pro Germany. Michael "The Doc" Keiner is now playing with a Team PokerStars Pro badge on his shoulder.

Keiner has been active on the international tournament scene since 1997. One of his biggest wins came in 2007 when he won a WSOP Seven Card Stud bracelet. He is also one of German poker's most respected experts.

"PokerStars and I pursue the same goal," he said. "We need to get poker recognized as a strategy game in the minds of the public."

Keiner is expected to make his Team PokerStars Pro debut in Berlin when the EPT arrives there early next month.

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Congratulations to both Keiner and Thew for making the team. We dogs and bloggers look forward to covering your action in the coming months and years.

* Our video team caught up with Thew at the start of the UKIPT Manchester event. Here's what he had to say...


Watch UKIPT Manchester S1: Julian Thew is signed to Team PokerStars Pro on PokerStars.tv

Brad Willis
@BradWillis in Team PokerStars Pro