Martin Kabrhel Accused of Marking Cards - Sues Multiple Big Names in the Poker Community

June 22, 2023
Mark Patrickson

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Czech high stakes tournament pro Martin Kabrhel has publicly denied allegations of marking cards and cheating during the recent $250,000 buy-in Super High Roller at the World Series of Poker (WSOP) in Las Vegas.

Andrew Robl publicly accused Kabrhel of “making any tournament no fun for anyone” and of marking “cards in every tournament I’ve ever played with him.” Now, after the poker community piled in hard, Kabrhel has lawyered up and is ready to fight back, claiming nobody has any evidence whatsoever.

Martin Kabrhel the Latest High Stakes Player Accused of Cheating

This latest cheating storm is just one of many in the last couple of years. Ali Imsirovic and Jake Schindler have both been shunned by the poker community for their alleged antics in the online game and now Kabrhel, rightly or wrongly, looks to have been lumped in with the pair of them.

This accusation of marking cards is as big as it gets, especially when it involves a player of Kabrhel’s stature.

Following his third place finish in the $250,000 Super High Roller event last week, The Czech pro has $11,703,308 in live tournament earnings, getting him into the all time top 100 list for the first time. He also has two WSOP bracelets and five WSOPC rings.

Robl made it clear that he is not alone in his feelings about Martin Kabrhel.He went as far as saying:

“Every player in the tournament cringed when he entered, if there was a player vote from the high roller field if he should be banned it would likely be unanimous and poker players can’t agree on everything.”

Last year, Daniel Negreanu labelled Martin Kabrhel as the worst possible company at a poker table along with Jake Schindler. Check out the video below for a snapshot of what that experience can be like.

One anonymous poster made it clear that Kabrhel is not a popular character amongst his fellow Czechs, having been accused of multiple instances of shady behaviour.

“There is basically no Czech poker player with positive experience with Martin Kabrhel as he scammed most of them already. Very untrustworthy and mean person on personal and professional level as well (I worked with him 1+ year and it was the worst job experience of my life).

Marking cards is a serious allegation though. Would be good to see some evidence. But in his case I would not be surprised. Be careful and never ever trust that person.”

Martin Kabrhel Lawyers Up and Sues Multiple Players

Only three days after the accusations started flying around, Martin Kabrhel took the obvious step of hiring a lawyer and suing people for defamation.

He claims that there is no evidence he has ever done anything untoward at the poker table and he will be seeking damages from them. The listed players and entities are:

  • Justin Bonomo
  • Chance Kornuth
  • Andrew Robl
  • Dan Smith
  • PokerGO

The legal letter posted on Twitter made it clear that Martin Kabrhel denies all accusations against him. All notified parties were ordered to preserve any communications regarding Kabrhel until legal action is completed.

“To be absolutely clear, Mr. Kabrhel is not a cheater. He does not mark cards. You have said these false things with malicious intent. We will prove this in court and ask that you be ordered to compensate him for any and all injury caused by your statements.”

Only hours before Kabrhel’s lawyer gave notice, chance Kornuth started a serious discussion about why he should be banned from playing. This is highly unlikely to happen given that Ali Imsirovic and Jake Schindler are still welcome at the WSOP. Currently, only PokerGO has taken the step of telling them they are not currently welcome in any of their events.

One interesting point from this thread is the possibility that Kabrhel is not cheating but rather using that insinuation to angle shoot his opponents. The more than obvious way that he has been caught on camera starting at the backs of his opponents’ cards would certainly corroborate this.

“Additionally, his antics at the table make for a terrible playing environment and very likely discourage recreational and professional players from wanting to play any event that he is in.

He was openly and consistently abusing Alex Kulev and critiquing his play during our $250K final table a few days ago. Even if he's not cheating, he should still be subject to consistent, severe penalties and a potential ban as he is in clear violation of TDA rules - "persistent delay of game, abusive conduct and excessive chatter" ON ALMOST EVERY HAND.”

Justin Bonomo posted a pair of threads detailing some of his experiences of playing live poker with Martin Kabrhel. Both are unlikely to be the last we hear about the 40-year-old Czech player. Check them out below.

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