A RECREATIONAL poker player from Bury has scooped a "money can't buy first prize" after winning a major online tournament which cost him 77 pence to enter.

Adam Conroy, triumphed in the 888poker Texas Hold'Em competition, beating of hundreds of challengers from across the UK over three evenings.

The 29-year-old trade analyst got off to a bit of a shaky start in the opening hands, losing most of his chips, but came back strong.

He said: "After that it was pretty smooth sailing. After two hours I was heads-up against my last rival. I had Six-Six and he had King-Queen. He didn't hit one of his cards and it flashed up that I had won.

"I was on my own and punched the air in jubilation. It was a fantastic feeling, a really proud achievement."

After the gruelling tournament Mr Conroy came away with the winner-takes-all prize which includes tickets to a premier league football match, as well as entry for him and two friends to two more big-prize poker events.

Mr Conroy will be joined on his poker playing road trip by Tom Mason, a 29-year-old data technician also from Bury.

The two friends fell in love with poker together 10 years ago when they started hosting games at their homes.

They will also be joined by their friend 28-year-old Josh Veasey, from Didsbury, Manchester, who works with Mr Conroy and shares a mutual passion for poker.

The first competition the three friends are entered into is the four-day, £440 entry 888poker Live London Main Event, taking place at Aspers Casino in Stratford.

After kicking off yesterday the tournament's guaranteed prize pool stands at at least £120,000.

They have also each won £1,000 in poker chips for a special one-off cash game which will be streamed around the world and see them battle poker superstars.

Among the big names they will be up against is Chris Moorman, from Essex, the world's most successful online poker player who has won more than $20 million; as well as Swedish ace Martin Jacobson who won the 2014 World Series of Poker's $10 million top prize, and fellow Swede and leading high stakes international cash poker player Sofia Lovgren.

Then to top off their winning weekend the trio have seats for the Premier League clash between Tottenham Hotspur and Leicester City at Wembley Stadium on Sunday.

For more information about the 888poker Live London tournament visit: www.888poker.com.