After 18 months of preparation, law firm Maurice Blackburn, Ron Merkel QC and the Adelaide-based plaintiff Shonica Guy yesterday kicked off their David-and-Goliath Federal Court battle against Crown and Aristocrat Leisure, alleging that poker machines are misleading and deceptive.

The opening day attracted a full-scale media press conference before proceedings commenced in court 8G of the Federal Court building in Melbourne before Justice Deborah Mortimer.