Paul van Leeuwen wins European Dealer Championship for the second time

33 dealers from 19 European countries demonstrated their skills at the Blackjack and American Roulette tables in the Finals of the ECA‘s 2010 European Dealer Championship held at Olympic Casino Vilnius from May 11-12.

Brussels, 13 May 2010 – From 11-12 May 2010, top dealers and representatives of the European casino industry gathered in Vilnius, Lithuania for the finals of the European Casino Association’s (ECA) prestigious European Dealer Championship.

In a highly competitive yet friendly two-day exhibition of their skills and craftsmanship at the Blackjack and American Roulette tables, the winners of the national heats in 19 European countries offered a top-class demonstration of the superior levels of dealer professionalism in Europe’s casinos. The competition remained captivating right to the end, with Paul van Leeuwen from Holland Casino finally emerging the winner in an intense final round and taking home the top prize of a trip to Las Vegas. For van Leeuwen it was the second title after winning the 1st European Dealer Championship back in 2007. Runner-up was David Tran (Casino Copenhagen, Denmark), followed by Matti Kankainen (Casino Helsinkis, Finland) in third place.

„We are extremely proud of Europe’s dealers and this event that celebrates the craftsmanship needed for this profession,“ said ECA Chairman Ron Goudsmit. „The skills and expertise of all the finalists are a superb reflection of the professionalism in European casinos. We would like to congratulate Paul van Leeuwen. Furthermore, I want to congratulate all the team at Olympic Casino for the perfect organisation of this event.“

„We were highly honored that our casino was chosen to host this key event,“ said Saulius Petravicius, CEO of Olympic Casino in Lithuania. „Vilnius is a beautiful city and we were delighted to have this opportunity to show off our location to the European gaming world.“

Launched in 2007, the European Casino Association’s annual European Dealer Championship is now a key event in the European gaming calendar. The championship aims to demonstrate the high levels of professionalism among dealers in Europe and celebrate best practices in creating a welcoming, fun, safe and fair environment in European casinos. Participating dealers are judged in a range of categories, including hospitality and communication skills, technical expertise, discretion and control of the game. The venue for the 2011 event will be announced in the near future.

The European Casino Association (ECA) and its members understand and recognize that high quality training is crucial to learning the skills needed to become a good and qualified dealer. The ECA actively promotes training and supports its members in their ongoing efforts to improve professionalism in Europe’s casinos.

The European Dealer Championship underlines this policy and also provides members with an ideal opportunity to get together, exchange information and expand their networks.

ECA’s 4th European Dealer Championship was sponsored by ShuffleMaster, AGEM, CTC, ICS Europe and GPI.