PokerStars Team Pro Eugene Katchalov gave an interview to igaming.org a couple of days ago in which he revealed he will be missing the majority of the World Series of Poker this year. The bracelet winner will be taking part in a mystery television show back in his homeland of Ukraine.
“I agreed upon doing a national TV show months ago, knowing it would cost me most of the summer. I think it will be fun and a unique experience and as much as I like the World Series, and as much as I hate missing it, it does take place every year. I’ll definitely be back in 2015. It’s okay to miss it one year because this could be quite a special experience,”
The contract with the television show states that he is not allowed to divulge too much information on the show that he will be appearing in, so it will be interesting to see what materialises.
Whilst many poker players would never think of missing out on the pinnacle of poker tournaments, Katchalov feels that the people of Ukraine need as much entertainment as they can get right now after the well documented issues that the country is having.
“It’s a very big deal to me, what’s going on in the Ukraine right now. It’s a weird time for me to participate in a show because of everything that’s going on in Crimea, but it’s something I agreed upon doing many months ago.”
Though Katchalov was born in the Ukraine he has spent his life in the USA since the age of ten so claims he has no family there but has a few friends that he regularly stays in contact with. He tries to keep right up to date with the goings on in his home country as much as possible but claims it is impossible to know what people are going through without being there in person.
Whilst he will miss the majority of the series he will still catch a few events at the start to give him an opportunity at claiming another bracelet to go with the one he won back in 2011. As he says, there is a WSOP held every year so he can certainly go on living by missing just one.