The Baloot Championship was held in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, and the first prize was SR300,000 (about $80,000). The winners were Hammam Al-Harbi and Hammad Al-Enezi, two Saudi card-game kings.
The tournament, held at Boulevard Riyadh City, ended on Saturday after drawing over 2,000 players at random.
Al-Harbi and Al-Enezi of Saudi Arabia won first place, and Ahmed Al-Amri and Omar Al-Amri of the United Arab Emirates took second place, earning themselves SR200,000. The remaining SR600,000 in the competition’s prize pool was split among the remaining competitors.
The risky, strategic, and skill-based trick card game, the origins of which are debated but generally agreed upon to lie in either France or India, is widely played across the kingdom.
The game is typically played with two-person teams and a standard deck of 32 cards (including a joker but excluding the numbers 2 and 6).
Motar Al-Dhafeeri, a player with over 20 years of experience, once said that the key to winning was getting along with your teammates.