Fri, Apr 26, 5:00am by Kevin Pitstock
Last week, world famous professional poker player Daniel Negreanu won AU$1,038,825 by winning a World Series of Poker sponsored event at the Crown Casino in Melbourne. A week ago, the Crown Casino was home to the WSOP Asia Pacific Main Event, which was held in Australia’s largest casino, the Crown Casino. The prize money was the single-biggest win of Daniel Negreanu’s career, which includes over $17 million in tournament winnings.
After dominating the final table, Daniel Negreanu went heads-up against Australian Daniel Marton. Daniel Marton won AU$637,911 for his second place finish. Though the event takes place on another continent, the victory counts as a World Series of Poker bracelet. The win places Negreanu among other 5-time WSOP bracelet winners like Stu Ungar, Scotty Nguyen, Ted Forrest, and John Juanda.
The World Series of Poker Asia Pacific Main Event attracted many of the world’s top players. A handful of these professionals finished in the money at the 405 player event, which included over AU$3,800,000 in prize money.
Other top finishers among the known professional poker players included Antonio Esfandiari, who finished 9th, and Raymond Rahme, who finished 17th. Todd Terry (24th), Jeff Lisandro (35th), and Erik Seidel (39th) all had solid finishes.
Daniel Negreanu, a fan favourite on television due to his talkative demeanour and friendly everyman appeal, credits his win to a personal development course he took earlier this year. Negreanu claims he’s always been a better poker player when he’s enjoying the game and trusting his instincts, so the course gave him a boost of confidence and a newfound love of his chosen profession.
People might think tournament poker is a glamorous lifestyle–and it is to an extent–but playing competitive poker can be a grind. Learning to love the game again is something veteran players have to do all the time, because even the best players have losing streaks.
Besides Daniel Marton finishing in 2nd place, the top Australian finishers in the Main Event were Kahle Burns and Mikel Habb. Each man took a much different path to the final table. Kahle Burns finished 5th, capping a terrific APAC tournament for the Aussie gambler by winning $201,994. Mikel Habb finished in 7th place and won over $107,000. This is made all the more impressive, because Mikel Habb describes himself as a recreational player and a local businessman.
The WSOP ACAP Main Event is the only bracelet event in Melbourne in 2013. The tournament offers a new “accumulator format”. This takes a page from the online re-buy tournaments and is an emerging trend in live tournaments. In the accumulator, players can buy in each day for a little over a thousand dollars. If you bust out one day, you can buy in the next. Players get not only their re-buy amount, but the chips they won the previous day (if they retain any). Though some people suggest accumulators require aggression from players, most of the best players suggest accumulator events play a lot like a standard tournament.
Everyone knows the big tournaments play with a lot of variance, but the accumulator format gives professionals a better chance to reach the late stages of the tournament, because they’re likely to have more money to buy back into the event. The fact Daniel Negreanu won the event is probably a good indication the new format favours the best players. From a fan’s perspective, it’s not such a bad thing to see the game’s best known personalities making it to final tables.
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