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Charles Barkley's scheduled participation in a charity poker event is causing a stir because of his vow not to gamble for "the next year or two" after the Wynn Las Vegas and the Clark County prosecutor's office had to chase him for a $400,000 gambling debt.  Barkley repaid the casino and a $40,000 fee to the DA's office.

Barkley is on the roster of celebrities to play in a tournament called Ante Up for Africa being held on July 2, the day before the World Series of Poker Main Event starts in Las Vegas at the Rio casino.  The organizers are actor Don Cheadle and poker professional Annie Duke and last year, the event raised more than $700,000 for relief efforts in Darfur, a part of Sudan where overwhelming human misery is the result of conflict and famine.

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However, Barkley's participation in the event, which has an invitee list that includes the Dallas Mavericks' Jason Kidd, actors Matt Damon and Ben Affleck as well as number of big-name poker pros, doesn't break his no-betting promise -- technically.  Whatever he wins, he is reportedly donating to one of the humanitarian charities associated with the tournament, according to a spokesman for TNT, the television network for which Barkley does basketball analysis.

Of course, the trick for Sir Charles is staying away from all those blackjack tables that are just down the hall from the poker tournament area.

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