Related Essays and Reports by Andrew W Scott
Big Game Poker comes to Sydney
November 30th 2007
As readers would know, yours truly
has been following the newly established Pokerstars.net
Asia Pacific Poker Tour this year, its inaugural season.
To say the tour has been a resounding success is a
massive understatement. The Macau leg of the tour
has just concluded - in fact I'm writing this story
on the ferry from Macau to Hong Kong as I prepare
to return to Sydney for the final leg of this year's
tour. Turbojet's pork and rice for Superclass passengers
was actually quite palatable.
The Macau tournament exceeded the
organiser's wildest expectations. The first ever live
money poker tournament in the history of the People's
Republic of China, it was originally slated to be
capped at 300 entrants. But overwhelming demand led
to hasty last minute negotiations with Government
authorities resulting in a final roll call of 352
entrants - a record for the tour so far. These 352
entrants included three former world Champions: Mansour
Matloubi (1990), Scotty Nguyen (1998) and Australian
Joe Hachem (2005). 2007 World Series Main Event runner-up
Tuan Lam was also in the field as were the glamorous
Liz Liew and Vanessa Rousso, dual World Series bracelet
winner Mel Judah, 2007 World Series heads-up Champion
Daniel Schreiber, and seasoned Aussie pros Jeff Lissandro,
David Saab and Ricky Gov.
2006 Miss Australia Erin McNaught
is hostess of the tour and was seen shooting promos
for the television coverage of the event which will
hit TV screens in the New Year. Victorious in the
main event was 27 year old Vietnamese born Dinh Le,
a concert promoter now based in the UK. Le took home
US$222,460 for his efforts. In addition to the US$2,500
entry fee main event, a high rollers event with a
US$15,000 entry fee was held, attracting 64 entrants,
a number higher than anybody predicted. Sydneysider
Eric Assadourian won the event, collecting US$368,640.
An Australian expat living in Hong Kong, David Steicke,
came third which was worth $110,592.
But by far the jewel in the crown
will be the season's Grand Final - to be held in Sydney's
Star City casino from Dec 6 to 16. The main event
will run from Dec 12 to 16, with 600 entrants expected.
This of course will smash the Macau record set just
days ago and will lead to a total prize pool well
over $3 million - an astonishing amount for a tour
in its inaugural year. In fact Pokerstars have just
announced that the first prize will be guaranteed
to be over $1 million.
Yours truly will be there, both writing
stories and also playing in the main event and trying
to pick up that $1 million first prize! After this
season's tour is televised on various free-to-air
and pay TV stations around the Asia Pacific region
(including Australia), we will no doubt see the exponential
surge in entrants and prize money enjoyed by other
tours. For example, the European Poker Tour (also
bankrolled by Pokerstars.net) grew from an average
first prize each fixture of €223,615 in 2004/05, its
inaugural season, to an average first prize each fixture
of €979,641 in 2007/08. Former tennis great Boris
Becker has just announced that he is now a regular
on the European Poker Tour!
I don't think it will be too many
years before Australian poker players won't need to
leave these shores to start picking up multi-million
dollar pay packets for winning a single tournament.
I just gotta get around to winning one of these things
2007 Andrew W Scott
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