The latest WPT National London festival opens its doors to the poker loving public on July 30, but before then there is an extra special tournament scheduled to kick the festival at Aspers Casino Stratford, a charity tournament to raise money for the DT38 Foundation.

Kicking off at 7:00pm on Wednesday 29 July is the £100 buy-in DT38 Charity rebuy tournament. For your £100 you receive 6,000 chips and play to a blind structure that increases every 20-minutes, but that only tells half of the story because 38% of the prize pool is being donated to the DT38 Foundation.

The DT38 Foundation was set up in memory of Dylan Tombides, a talented professional footballer who was on the books at West Ham United. In April 2011, Dylan found a lump in his testicle, but didn’t take any action because he felt no pain or discomfort. When pain started to develop, Dylan put it down to the intense training he was doing as a footballer. Eventually, the pain was more consistent and Dylan visited his doctor where he was informed the lump was nothing more than a cyst, something that is quite common.

Dylan was then selected to play for the Australian national team at the Under-17 World Cup in Mexico and it is here that the results from a random drugs test came back positive for a tumour. Those results would forever change the lives of everyone who knew Dylan.

Despite his cancer, Dylan made his full début for West Ham United on September 25, 2012, fulfilling a life-time ambition. It would be the only time Tombides would play for The Hammers first team.

Dylan’s mother, Tracy, founded DT38 (38 is the shirt number Dylan was assigned at West Ham United) to raise awareness of testicular cancer and to educate young people on the subject. The foundation is attempting to raise £1 million in funds and has so far managed almost £13,000 via its JustGiving page. The funds raised by the DT38 Charity tournament will help reach this total and prevent another tragedy like Dylan’s.

In December 2012, Dylan underwent a course of chemotherapy and stem cell transplants. The cancer then spread to Dylan’s liver and in March 2013 he had his liver resected.

Still as determined as ever to beat the cancer and continue his childhood dream of playing football professionally, Dylan had a number of minor procedures between July and October 2013 but was informed in November 2013 that his cancer had returned.

Amazingly, Dylan headed to Oman in January 2014 for the Australia Under-22 team only three weeks after his latest round of chemotherapy. Upon his return home, Dylan was informed that his cancer had not responded to treatment and doctors said there was nothing left that they could do.

Doctors in Germany gave some hope to Dylan and his family by offering treatments not available in the United Kingdom, but the toil the chemotherapy took on Dylan’s body proved too much and on the morning of April 18, 2014, Dylan lost his three-year battle with cancer. He was only 20-years old.

Help the DT38 Foundation achieve its goals

The DT38 Foundation aims to change the way testicular cancer is diagnosed and by entering the DT38 charity tournament you can help make their goal a reality.

If you do choose to support this amazing cause, you’ll be rubbing shoulders with the likes Sky’s F1 lead presenter Simon Lazenby, the Crystal Palace and Australia captain Mile Jedinak, Republic of Ireland and Crystal Palace defender Damien Delaney, former professional footballer turned poker player Steve Watts and several poker stars including Charles Chattha, James Akenhead, James Dempsey and partypoker ambassador Tony Dunst.

In addition to any cash prizes that you may be fortunate enough to win, partypoker and WPT are adding more than £2,000 worth of extras to the prize pool including:

  • WPT National London Seat (two flights)
  • Four sets of Monster headphones
  • A WPT500 entry
  • Two Grandstand tickets to October’s British MotoGP
  • A £330 Pokerfest buy-in
  • Signed sports memorabilia
  • WPT National flight buy-in for busting Simon Lazenby or Tony Dunst

We’re encouraging as many people to play in this special charity event, but if you cannot attend and would like to make a contribution to the DT38 Foundation’s cause, you can do so by clicking this link and heading to the DT38 Foundation JustGiving page.

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