Archive for July, 2012

Allan wins Queenstown Snowfest Title

by | Published: Tuesday, July 31st, 2012

The 2011 Asian Pacific Poker Tour has crowned its first champion with Australian David Allan converting his day 1 chip lead into a title at the Queenstown Snowfest Main Event on Sunday.

The chip leader for the first two days of the tournament, Allan walked away with a tournament record $110,600 first prize joining fellow Australians Danny Chevalier and Julian Cohen as well as German Marcel Schreiner as Queenstown Snowfest Main Event Champions.

While Allan was the champion, most of the early attention at the final table was focused on Team Pokerstars Pokerstars Pro Bryan Huang who was attempting to confirm his status as the best player in Asia-Pacific. Huang’s tournament was ended when his pocket sevens were dominated by Jordan Westmorland’s pocket kings putting him out in 7th place.

Allan entered the final day of the tournament, when the field was reduced to a single table, in 3rd position with 393,500 in chips behind Ken Demlakian and Jordan Westmorland. However, after a couple of hours of play it was Westmorland who held a big chip lead. Unfortunately for Westmorland, he lost a large amount of chips to multiple players and was eliminated by Demalakian in 3rd position, giving Demalakian a chip advantage going into heads-up play.

Allan slowly ground away at Demalakian’s advantage taking the lead just before the two-hour mark of the heads-up battle and it wasn’t long after that Allan’s 10 high flush beat Demalakian’s two-pair to give Allan the title and the money.

Allan considers himself an online poker professional and appeared underwhelmed at his first ever live tournament victory.

“ It’s good to do something in a live tournament, but I’ve always said in the past that there is a lot of variance in live tournaments so I can’t really turn around now and say there was a large degree of skill in winning one,” Allan said in a post-tournament interview.

Allan will head to Sydney and Melbourne to play in the upcoming APPT tournaments in Sydney and Melbourne.

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October 9 Spotlight: Greg Merson

by | Published: Sunday, July 29th, 2012

For a player who prefers Online to Live poker Greg Merson has had a remarkably successful 2012 World Series of Poker.

After winning $1.1 million in the $10,000 six-player max no limit hold-em event, Merson has survived to become a member of the October 9 and earn a shot at winning over $8.5 million and the title of poker world champion. Thanks to his success in these two events he is the current leader in the 2012 WSOP Player of the Year race.

Merson’s run is even more remarkable considering just a year ago his poker career was at a crossroads. As a freshman at College he began using drugs, a habit which took over his life. Merson cleaned up his act in 2007 and stayed sober until the beginning of last year when he began using again. His drug use clearly effected his poker and Merson had a disappointing 2011, in both online and live games.

However, after going sober again, at the beginning of this year, Merson is in career best form. He is one of the highest stake players on the internet regularly playing cash games with stakes of $400-$800. Merson is the first to agree that the change in his lifestyle has been the catalyst for his success.

“I let the poker life style get the best of me. It was a good experience to go from being at the top of online cash games to six months later struggling to beat $1/$2 Six-Max. I worked really hard to get all the way back to the highest games again, almost to where I was before I came here. I definitely have a way more positive mind set about everything. I am way more comfortable about everything,” Merson said in an interview with WSOP.

Going into the final Merson is 3rd with a chip stack of 28.725 million and as such is third favorite to win with most bookmakers. While he has work to do to catch chip leader Jesse Sylvia,  Merson’s experience in big games and calm under pressure means he will definitely be a contender in October.

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Queenstown Snowfest reaches day 2

by | Published: Friday, July 27th, 2012

After three grueling days of poker action the three flights of day 1 have now concluded in the Queenstown Snowfest tournament.

The Queenstown Snowfest is one of the most unique poker events in the world. The event is a part of: the New Zealand Poker Tour, the Australia New Zealand Poker Tour and the inaugural event of this year’s Asia Pacific Poker Tour. Not only that, but the Queenstown Snowfest is held in one of the most picturesque casinos on earth; SKYCITY Queenstown. Queenstown is a beautiful tourist town located on the South Island of New Zealand. While not at the tables poker players can enjoy breathtaking views, numerous ski resorts and many adventure activities, such as bungee-jumping.

The field of 149 players was split into three flights because of the small size of SKYCITY Queenstown. This is the biggest field in the history of the event with the winner to take home over $100,000 for the first time. The first flight was dominated by Australian Pokerstars Pokerstars qualifier David Allan. Allan finished the day with a commanding $98,200 in chips with his aggressive play and brilliant reads paying dividends.  2011 ANZPT Sydney champion, Michael Kannan also fared well finishing the flight in 3rd position with $88,350 in chips. Kannan had an up and down day, fighting back from a short stack late in the day. Lithuanian  player Laurynas Levinskas is well placed with $84,625 in chips and will be looking to make his move on day 2.

Big name poker players from the region, Jacky Wang and Tom Grigg, were overshadowed in the second flight by qualifier Ken Demlakian, who slowly and steadily, built himself a sizeable chip lead. Demlakian finished the flight with over $10,000 more chips than nearest rival, New Zealand pro, James Honeybone. Colorful professional Billy “The Croc” Argyros was consistently the center of attention with the veteran winning a big hand against Matt Wakeman late in the day to put himself in a good position, going into day 2. Ivan Kalac, Corey Kempson and Jonathan Dangio are all well placed to make a deep run in the tournament.

The third flight was headlined by Australian Poker Hall of Fame member Lee Nelson. Unfortunately, the 2006 Aussie Millions Champion was one of the first players eliminated. Fellow veteran pro, Leo Boxell, fared better and despite being relatively short-stacked is always a threat in AAPT tournaments. Flight three was dominated by Australians with the seven highest chip counts held by Aussies. Leading the pack was Nurlan Boobekov who, like Demlakian the day before, slowly amassed a sizeable advantage. Team Pokerstars Pokerstars pro Bryan Huang kept himself in contention and sits mid field with $39,925 in chips.

Heading into day 2, 87 players remain who all will be hoping to make the top 15 and take home some cash. The field will once again be split, this time into two flights, before joining together at 7.30PM this evening. Will David Allan continue to dominate or will somebody make a charge from the bottom of the leaderboard? Poker.com will keep you updated as the tournament reaches its finale.

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World Series of Poker expands National Circuit Tour

by | Published: Wednesday, July 25th, 2012

The World Series of Poker has expanded its National Circuit Tour adding four new events including, for the first time, one outside the United States.

The 2012-2013 World Series of Poker Circuit will feature a record 20 stops with events added in: River Rock Casino in Vancouver, Canada; Horse Shoe Casino in Cleveland; Foxwood Resort Casino in Connecticut and Harrah’s Cherokee in Cherokee, North Carolina.

Each stop on the circuit will contain 12 tournaments held over 12 days and conclude with a three day $1,675 buy-in Main Event Championship.

The season will conclude with a National Championship held at Harrah’s New Orleans in which only the top 100 players from the Circuit Tour will qualify.

World Series of Poker Executive Director Ty Stewart was very positive about the future of the National Circuit Tour.

“We’re coming off the best year of participation in the history of the WSOP Circuit and the addition of these new markets really brings our vision to life,” said Ty Stewart in a press release. “We want to have the #1 regional tour to go alongside the number one super event in poker.  We believe we have the best offering in terms of value and ROI at these stakes and the most exciting championship format,” added Stewart.

The season will commence at IP Casino Resort in Biloxi, Mississippi on the 7th of August. You can follow all World Series of Poker news and results here on Poker.com.

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World Series of Poker Main Event Final Table Decided

by | Published: Tuesday, July 24th, 2012

The final table of the main event of the World Series of Poker, known this year as the October 9, has been determined.

The October 9 have outlasted 6589 other competitors to give themselves a chance at taking home the $8,527,982 in prize money, the custom-designed WSOP gold and diamond bracelet as well as the title of the reigning world poker champion.

This will be the first year the final table has been held in October. The World Series of Poker made the controversial decision to move the final table to November in 2008 in an attempt to build excitement and increase television ratings for the coverage of the event. Whilst criticized at the time it is now widely accepted that the move has had a positive effect on the World Series.   This year the final table has been moved forward one week to avoid a clash with the United States presidential election.

The October 9 has a very American feel this year with all but one of the finalists residing in the United States. The one exception is Hungarian Andras Koroknai who will begin the final table with the second largest stack. Koroknai eliminated Frenchwomen Gaelle Baumann on the final table bubble and will be looking to become the first ever Hungarian World Series of Poker Main Event Champion.

The chip lead is currently held by 24 year old Jesse Sylvia who only began playing poker three years ago. Since that point Sylvia’s game has improved at a rapid rate and he now carves out a living for himself as a professional poker player.

Sylvia is joined at the final table by good friend Russell Thomas; fellow pros Jeremy Ausmus, Robert Salaburu and Michael Esposito, Jacob Balsiger who is attempting to become the youngest main event winner in history, the oldest man at the table Steven Gee as well as Greg Merson 2012 World Series of Poker Player of the Year.

Poker.com will be profiling each of these men as the countdown to the October 9 continues.

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