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WAPL Rules

Western Australian Poker League has some specific house rules governing events we promote to help them run as smoothly as possible for everyone involved.

Penalties for breaking the rules can range from a sideline from the table (at which time your blinds are still spent and you cannot play hands) to immediate and permanent suspension from the League.

The rules are there for a reason, please take them very seriously! All WAPL Members agree to our specific rules when signing their membership form and by taking part in WAPL promoted events.


  • Each game is self dealt by the players at the table. (Exception : Cash Tables and Final Tables may have a dealer at the tournament director's discretion.)

  • After the shuffle the player to the right of dealer must cut the deck onto the joker card. The cut must be two or more cards from the top or bottom of the deck, and the joker is to remain on the bottom of the deck for the duration of the hand.

  • Do not place a bet or fold your cards out of turn. If a player bets out of turn, they must check/call if all players before them checks/calls and cannot bet or raise until the next round of betting. If a player before them bets more than their out of turn bet, then they may call or raise, but if they fold they forfeit their out of turn bet to the pot.

  • Don't show or tell someone your cards whilst the game is in play, nor tell someone what you had if you've folded your cards already. Wait until the end of the hand if you must. Discussing or showing your hand can adversely affect the outcome of the hand for all players, and is against the rules. The obvious exception to this rule is for hand showdowns, when it is required for all players left in the hand to show their cards starting from the player who was called (last to bet). If a player intentionally shows their cards in order to gain a tell/read from their opponent, under the anti-collusion rule their hand is deemed to be folded.

  • Once cards are folded, you may not look at them again. This is a legal requirement. Only the dealer can touch the discarded cards on the table.

  • The current dealer collects bets at the end of each betting round, and is the only person who should touch and distribute the pot to the hand winner(s).

  • In the case of a player needing to split a larger chip into smaller denominations (for instance to bet a smaller amount), they will ask the dealer to change the chip for them. The dealer can then change it from the pot, from the dealer's own chips, or request it be changed from another player's chips, giving the player needing the smaller denominations an identical value of chips in return.

  • In the case of a dispute which cannot be resolved between the players, the hand shall stop and a WAPL staff member called over to clarify the ruling and settle the dispute. If you are not sure about any particular rule, please make sure you ask a WAPL Staff member before the hand continues.

  • If a player must leave early from a tournament, their chips cannot be split amongst the players at the table. A WAPL Staff member must be informed, and their chips will be removed from the tournament and that player awarded the rank and points as if he'd just been knocked out of the tournament.

  • If a split pot arises where there is one chip of the lowest denomination currently in play which cannot be split, that chip shall go to the winning player closest to the left of the dealer.

  • In the case of a card being shown accidentally, if it is during the deal, and no bets have been placed (other than blinds), the cards will be collected and reshuffled, then the hand redealt. If a card is accidentally shown when it should have been the burn card, or after betting has taken place, the revealed card will be shuffled back into the deck, then the hand will continue from the point it was at before the card was accidentally revealed, with a new burn card discarded in its place.

  • If two players get knocked out in the same hand, the player who had more chip value at the start of the hand receives the higher placing of the two. If both players had equal stacks, the player sitting to the left of the dealer receives the higher placing.

  • A player may tap the table to signify a check. If there is any ambiguity the dealer should make sure the player actually wants to check.

  • When a player goes all-in, all hands must be shown at the showdown.

  • All chips must be visible at all times. A player's highest denomination chips should not be obscured by the player's other chips, and a player may ask at any time for a count of another player's chip total.

  • Players may not take their chips away from the table at any time. Chips may not be pocketed, and any chips found on a player and off the table will be forfeited immediately, shall be removed from play, and incur a penalty for that player. If a player attempts to steal chips from a tournament, they will be instantly suspended from the League.

  • Chip races will be held to eliminate redundant chips from the table. The race will be held with a card draw, with players drawing a number of cards equivalent to the number of chips they have in the chip race. The highest card takes the pot. If two or more players have an equal high card, the next highest card in their selection is used as a kicker. If a player does not have a second card that player must redraw for a kicker, and so on until a winner is decided. The winner takes all of the chips raced.

  • At the request of WAPL Staff, a player must exchange his or her chips for the same value in chips of a different denomination at any point in the tournament.

  • One player per hand only! You may not advise a player on how to play a hand, and doing so will invoke a penalty towards you and the player.

  • When we reach heads up, the dealer is the player who paid the bigger blind the hand before. The dealer is small blind. First action in the pre flop betting round is the dealer. The other player starts the action in subsequent betting rounds.


  • A bet is deemed 'made' upon the completion of the betting action, OR the verbal confirmation of the player's intent. For instance... if a player holds, touches, plays with their chips whilst considering their move, it is not deemed a bet until the point where they move the chips forwards away from them towards the centre of the table and remove their hands from the chips to indicate that those chips are being bet. If a player says I Call/Raise/Check/am All In, then this is confirmation of their move, and they must do so. Please refrain from saying "I call your bet and raise you" if possible, as this can create some confusion, it's always better to just say "Raise." and push the raised amount forwards. A verbal confirmation is always taken over an incorrect betting action. For instance, if someone says "I call" yet pushes an amount of chips for a raise into the bet, the player must take the amount bet back until it is a call, as they stated their intention.

  • A betting motion must be a single movement of chips from a player towards the centre of the table. You cannot "string" bet, by for instance moving chips in to equal the current bet, then moving a "Raise" amount in to raise it. It must be made in the same motion. Similarly you may not string bet by dropping chips one at a time.

  • No "Splashing the Pot". When you bet, you bet out in front of you, in a stack, and at the end of the betting round, the dealer collects the stacks to the pot.

  • The distribution of final prizes will be determined based on the number of players entered in the tournament, and the buy-in amount. (This refers to Pro League only)

  • Re-raising. The correct method for re-raising is that the re-raise must be by the amount previously bet/raised or more. For instance, if the current blinds are 25/50, and someone raises by 250 to a total of 300, if the next player wants to re-raise, they must re-raise by at least the amount previously bet, in this case another 250, or more. So, they would have to raise to a total of 550, NOT 600. Of course, in No-Limit Hold 'Em, 250 isn't the maximum they can raise, they could raise it to 575 total if they like. Anything over the minimum raise of 250.

  • After a raise or re-raised betting round, the new betting round (after seeing the next card) will always start with the minimum bet being the big blind.


  • Unless otherwise noted, there will be no Antes at any Western Australian Poker League operated tournaments.

  • Blinds must be posted before cards are dealt.

  • If a player does not have enough chips to cover the blind, a side pot is made, and that player can only win the amount of the all-in times the number of players in the hand.


  • In the hand after a Big Blind is eliminated, the dealer button will move normally and there will be no small blind. In the following hand, the dealer button will move to where the eliminated player was, and the hand will be dealt by the player who dealt the previous hand, as if they were at the button.

  • In the hand after a Small Blind is eliminated, the dealer button will move to the position where the eliminated player was, and the hand will be dealt by the player who dealt the previous hand, as if they were at the button.

  • Through players being eliminated, no player should ever miss a small or big blind.

  • There is no such thing as a phantom Big Blind. If a player gets out before the blinds reach them, the blind continues on to the next player.


  • No Side Bets! WAPL promoted events must have NO Side Betting. Anyone caught side betting on any hands in a WAPL promoted League Tournament will be immediately and permanently removed from the League. This cannot be stated strongly enough. If you want to win more than a trophy, play Pro League.
  • Bringing alcoholic beverages onto licensed premises is contrary to the Liquor Licensing Act of WA. Western Australian Poker League does not permit the introduction of beverages or food into a venue that has not been purchased from the venue. Please remember, the venue is paying for your opportunity to play poker, so please don't abuse this privilege. Penalties may include a warning, disqualification from the tournament, or suspension of WAPL Membership.
  • Swearing, abusiveness, threatening or aggressive behaviour is unacceptable at WA Poker League events. This is a fun, social league and offenders will not be tolerated. If you wish to play in our events, make your involvement in our League positive.
  • No Cheating! Cheating will not be tolerated. Please let the Tournament Director know if you suspect someone of cheating. The ruling by the tournament director will be final, and cheating is taken very seriously, both by WAPL and the Law.

  • The Tournament Director has the best interest of the game and fairness as the top priority in their decision-making process. Unusual circumstances can, on occasion, dictate that the technical interpretation of the rules be ignored in the interest of fairness. Their decision is final.

  • Only players who are 18 years or older can play WAPL tournaments in licensed venues, nor can any player under the age of 18 play Pro League.

  • In the case of a prize including a trip to play Poker in a tournament in the United States of America or some other International destination, the minimum age for this prize may be higher than 18, to cover the destination's gambling age laws. In such an event, another prize of similar worth will be awarded to the winning member unless another arrangement is made with the agreement of the Operator.

  • Only tournament players who are still involved in a tournament (ie. haven't been knocked out) can be seated at a table. This saves confusion for the staff members trying to consolidate tables or add new players to tables.

  • The Operator reserves the right to add players on a reserve list into a tournament when players are knocked out up until a reasonable point decided by the tournament director.

  • Unauthorized promotion of competing products or services at WA Poker League events is against the rules. People doing so risk being immediately and permanently suspended from the League.

  • By becoming a WA Poker League Member, you agree to be photographed while participating in a Western Australian Poker League operated event, and agree to the publication of those photographs in any form of media.

  • By becoming a WA Poker League Member, and by supplying your contact details via your membership form, you agree that we may send you informational or promotional material. You may request us to stop this via e-mailing info@wapokerleague.com.au , please include your name along with this request.

  • By becoming a WA Poker League Member, and by participating in WAPL promoted tournaments, you agree that should you win any event you are participating in as a WAPL Member, that Western Australian Poker League has the exclusive right as major sponsor of the winner to promotional and marketing purposes for a period of 1 year from the date of the winning event, unless otherwise negotiated.