This Week in Poker: September 11 – 17

TWIP Sept 10 - 17
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  • Namita Ghosh September 18, 2019
  • 7 Minutes Read

In the PokerGuru feature ‘This Week in Poker’ we bring you the weekly roundup of the most significant online scores by Indian MTT players along with the top stories from both the live and online poker circuit.

Here are this week’s top stories

2019 has undoubtedly been a remarkable year for Indian poker with a continually increasing number of local players embarking for international poker destinations, and the results have been more than impressive. Online poker too has grown exponentially but what makes the year genuinely stand out is the resurgence of the golden era of live poker in the country. Goa has once again been granted its rightful place as the headquarters of all the action with three of the country’s biggest online poker brands – Adda52, PokerBaazi and Spartan Poker – now working neck-to-neck in their zest to engage more players. The result is the emergence of some incredible value live tournaments for Indian players! Underlining this phenomenal growth story recently was the Spartan Poker-sponsored India Poker Championship (IPC) that came back last week after an almost four-year-long hiatus. The five-day series took place onboard Casino Big Daddy in Goa and registered record-breaking turnouts in all four events on the schedule. The ₹35K Main Event stole the show by garnering the biggest prize pool in IPC history – a mind-boggling ₹2.65 Crores! Though still a distant second to the 2018 WPT India Main Event`s record of ₹3.62 Crores in terms of prize money, with 777 entries, the IPC Main Event saw the largest-ever turnout in the country`s history. Taking down this historic event was Pune`s Raj Talwar who himself was getting back into the live scene after a two-year break and took home a massive ₹49.25 Lakhs. Talwar’s spectacular run notwithstanding, we can but not deny the week’s PokerGuru Star of the Week” title to online phenom Pranay Chawla who walked away with the biggest payout at the IPC, a jaw-dropping ₹51.66 Lakhs for winning the ₹100K High Roller title!

Adding to the glamour quotient at the record-smashing IPC was the presence of several celebrities and one name that stood out was that of Instagram celeb and poker player Dan Bilzerian. The self-proclaimed “King of Instagram” happens to be the fifth most-followed celebrity on Instagram, with over 28 million followers. Bilzerian visited the Big Daddy casino for several hours on Sunday where he played some ultra high stakes cash games. According to sources, Bilzerian added seven-figure winnings to his bankroll.

Dan Bilzerian at the Casino Big Daddy
Dan Bilzerian at the Casino Big Daddy
Image Courtesy: Amar Katharani

Following up on its record-breaking return, the IPC has already announced a follow-up series that takes place from December 4 to 8, with more details expected to be published in the future.

The IPC may have hogged most of the attention back home, but there were still a few Indians who flew down to Manila (from WPT Vietnam) to attend the APT Philippines II that came back for its second outing this year at Resorts World Manila. After Akshay Nasa’s standout performance at the PHP 86K High Rollers Single Day, Nasa along with Jaideep Sajwan entered the PHP 55K Main Event with only Sajwan managing to finish ITM, placing 49th for ₹1.43 Lakhs. Outlasting the record-breaking 515-entry field in the Main Event was Peru’s Yohn Paredes.

A motley group of Indian players was also present for The Big Wrap PLO festival in King’s Casino and Resort in Rozvadov. The standout performance came from Manish Goenka who final-tabled the Big Wrap Warm-up PLO, finishing 6th for €2,522 (~₹2 Lakhs). Richard Toth took down the event to win €33,395 after a four-way deal.

The record-breaking turnouts at the IPC had severe implications for the online action with all major domestic networks having to fill in massive overlays these past few days. The biggest winner on the virtual felts this past week was Aditya ‘SuperuSer’ Sushant who took down the Destiny 11.0 ₹20 Lakhs GTD on Spartan Poker for ₹5.30 Lakhs.

There are a good three weeks to go before live-action retakes precedence with the Baazi Poker Tour and WPT India slotted to take place back-to-back next month. Luckily there is no dearth of options with online sites hosting such lucrative promotions. For the low-mid stakes players, Poker Dangal has come out with the ‘Dangal 100-Max Series’. The uniquely structured series that got going today offers a juicy ₹15 Lakhs prize pool guarantee through its five-day run. For the more seasoned players, there is the PokerBaazi Premier League (PPL) that hits the Baazi client on September 20. The PPL is coming back bigger than ever with a jaw-dropping ₹7 Crores in prize pool guarantees along with Leaderboard prizes worth ₹15 Lakhs across 10 days of intense action!

Recapping the other highlights from the week, we saw PokerStars finally scrapping the popular PokerStars Caribbean Adventure (PCA) stop after a 15-year run. The WPT Asia Swing Season XVIII in the meantime is in FULL SWING, and following WPT Vietnam was the brand’s stop in Japan where Junheng Situ championed the ¥20,000 buy-in WPT Main Event.

The other international tournament of interest was the Super High Roller Bowl London that was taken down by Poker Central supremo Cary Katz for £2.1 Million.

Online Railbird Report

With the core tournament crowd engaged at the IPC, the virtual felts doled out incredible value for players. Massive overlays and softer field made for insane value for the few who missed out on the live-action.

Coming out as the biggest winner this last week was Aditya ‘SuperuSer’ Sushant who shipped the Destiny 11.0 ₹20 Lakhs GTD on Spartan Poker for ₹5.30 Lakhs. Apart from Sushant two more players, namely, Nitin Arora (BSS SuperStack ₹25 Lakhs GTD for ₹5.02 Lakhs) and Archit Saraogi (Godfather X ₹20 Lakhs GTD for ₹5 Lakhs) banked ₹5 Lakhs-plus scores.

Aditya Sushant
Aditya Sushant

The notable scores of the week include –

Player NamePrize AmountEventPoker Site
Aditya ‘SuperuSer’ Sushant₹5,30,000Destiny 11.0 ₹20 Lakhs GTDSpartan Poker
Nitin ‘philhermouth’ Arora₹5,02,500BSS SuperStack ₹25 Lakhs GTD (RE)PokerBaazi
Archit ‘archit521’ Saraogi₹5,00,000Godfather X ₹20 Lakhs GTDAdda52
pgp282₹4,87,250Sunday SuperStack ₹25 Lakhs GTD ₹5,500 RESpartan Poker
Himanshu ‘pirateking7’ Arora₹4,65,761Mega Suits ₹25 Lakhs GTDAdda52
Akash ‘utgwithyourmum’ Malik₹4,28,281The Elite ₹20 Lakhs GTDSpartan Poker
DHIRENDA100₹4,17,000Whale – 6 Max ₹15 Lakhs GTDAdda52
Harsh ‘Harsh114’ Sanghi₹3,67,500The Joker ₹15 Lakhs GTD9stacks
Alok ‘VotaryoftheLaw’ Ranjan₹3,05,934Sunday Special – Progressive KO – ₹15 Lakhs GTDPokerStars India
yash1993₹2,78,000Goa Fest ₹10 Lakhs GTDAdda52
Reg_Slayer₹2,74,060Big Slick ₹15 Lakhs GTDAdda52
Sam ‘thereallokimon’ Anand₹2,41,500The Bout ₹10 Lakhs GTD (RE)PokerBaazi
Avish ‘thehorse7’ Sharma₹2,41,500Fri-Yay ₹10 Lakhs GTD (RE)PokerBaazi
Bharat ‘thirdeye’ Bhati₹2,36,274Head-Hunter ₹10 Lakhs GTDSpartan Poker
Ayan ‘interalia_1’ Ray₹2,35,300The Vegas ₹10 Lakhs GTD (RE)PokerBaazi
nutty41500₹2,18,483Highroller ₹10 Lakhs GTDPokerStars India
Suraj ‘OmgRATHIII’ Rathi₹2,07,986SSS #5 ReCharge₹12 Lakhs GTD ₹2,200 RESpartan Poker
rdx1111₹1,80,208Sunday Special (L) – ₹10 Lakhs GTDPokerStars India
Yash ‘hasyY@$#116’ Shrivastava₹1,60,305Uppercut Progressive KO (6-Max) MAGIC Edition ₹8 Lakhs GTDPokerStars India
travisB₹1,51,500Maverick ₹10 Lakhs GTDAdda52
Sanjay ‘sanjayg007’ Gupta₹1,40,649TGIF ₹10 Lakhs GTDSpartan Poker
Gautam ‘M8a7’ Rohilla₹1,31,180Thursday MonsterStack ₹5 Lakhs GTD (5RE)PokerBaazi
Chennaino1₹1,24,350BSS Megastack ₹5 Lakhs GTD (RE)PokerBaazi
Devang ‘laila’ Yadav₹1,20,750The Monster 6- Max ₹5 Lakhs GTD (RE)PokerBaazi
Sagar ‘sagarpupull’ Choudhury₹1,19,270Monday Hustle ₹3,300 NLHE ₹6 Lakhs GTDPokerStars India
mahek1983₹97,777Night on Stars ₹5 Lakhs GTDPokerStars India
TheG0dgather3r₹97,450SVS #25 – Big Daddy ₹5 Lakhs GTD ₹990 RESpartan Poker
Casa de Lapel₹95,190SVS #5 Hi-Fi ₹5 Lakhs GTDSpartan Poker
Grinderrr₹93,684SSS #6 Hi Fi ₹5 Lakhs GTD ₹1,100 RESpartan Poker
Vikram ‘vikrambatra’ Ved Batra₹81,3706-Max Wednesday SuperStack ₹3 Lakhs GTDPokerBaazi
Devrat‘vickypune’ Singh₹80,400Monday MegaStack ₹3 Lakhs GTD (5RE)PokerBaazi
Aditya ‘adit11’ Kulkarni₹77,250Friday SuperStack ₹3 Lakhs GTD (RE)PokerBaazi
Guddu ‘skyline’ Chaudhary₹65,000StackUp @ 8 PM ₹2.5 Lakhs GTD9stacks
Bharat ‘rungooserun’ Vasan₹65,000StackUp @8 PM Hold’em No Limit ₹2.5 Lakhs GTD9stacks
Ankit ‘Hidimba’ Saxena₹65,000StackUp @8 PM Hold’em No Limit ₹2.5 Lakhs GTD9stacks
Fireman₹65,000StackUp @ 8PM ₹2.50 Lakhs GTD9stacks
Ankit ‘kasatankit’ Kasat₹62,581Hexagram ₹2.5 Lakhs GTDAdda52
Vatsalya ‘MaxEV’ Rao₹53,868BSS PLO ₹2 Lakhs GTD (HALF RE)PokerBaazi
rdx1111₹50,832Progressive KO 4 Max ₹2 Lakhs GTDPokerStars India
MojoJojo2193₹45,639Zoom 3-Max Progressive KO ₹1,650 ₹2 Lakhs GTDPokerStars India
Akshay ‘VaahBhaiVaah’ Gupta₹37,437The Classic ₹1,650 ₹2 Lakhs GTDPokerStars India
gangnam gangi₹34,382Sunday PLO ₹2 Lakhs GTDPokerStars India
britishraaj₹28,150Dangal Friday ₹1 Lakh GTDPoker Dangal
Adithiyya ‘Bezerkk1’ Sb₹24,134Sunday Warm-Up ₹1.5 Lakhs GTDPokerStars India

Read the complete story here

India Poker Championship (IPC) 2019

Back in the business after a gap of almost four years, the Spartan Poker–sponsored India Poker Championship (IPC) ran for five action-packed days at the floating Casino Big Daddy from September 11 to 15. Breaking all its past records, the series turned out to be a phenomenal success. The show-stealer was the ₹35K Main Event that logged in a never-seen-before field of 777 entries to become the largest Main Event to be hosted in India, edging past the 697-entry record set by the 2018 WPT India Main Event. Though the prize pool of ₹2.65 Crores that the event mustered still trails the 2018 WPT India Main Event record of ₹3.62 Crores, it is still the most massive IPC event to-date. Championing the field was Raj Talwar who charted a spectacular run through the Main Event and walked away with ₹49.25 Lakhs.

Raj Talwar wins the IPC Main Event
Raj Talwar wins the IPC Main Event

Talwar, who himself was making a comeback to the live scene after a two-year hiatus, narrowly missed being our PokerGuru Star of the Week” and the distinction goes to Pranay Chawla who took down the ₹100K High Roller to collect the biggest paycheque in IPC history – a cool ₹51.66 Lakhs!

Pranay Chawla wins the IPC ₹100K High Roller
Pranay Chawla wins the IPC ₹100K High Roller

Among the other winners at the stop was Siddharth Mundada who took down the ₹10K Freezeout and Raghavendra Hada who won the ₹15K Head Hunter.

IPC September 2019 Winners

EventWinnerPrize Money
₹1,00,000 High RollerPranay Chawla₹51.66 Lakhs
₹35,000 Main EventRaj Talwar₹49.25 Lakhs
₹10,000 FreezeoutSiddharth Mundada₹8.80 Lakhs
₹15,000 Head HunterRaghavendra Hada₹7.39 Lakhs

Read the complete story here

APT Philippines II

Akshay Nasa
Akshay Nasa

One of the most prestigious annual stops of the Asian Poker Tour (APT) brand, the APT Philippines set into motion on September 11. Akshay Nasa began Team India`s run on a fantastic note by finishing runner-up in the PHP 86K High Rollers Single Day 1 for PHP 786,000 (~₹10.81 Lakhs).

Read the complete story here

Jaideep Sajwan
Jaideep Sajwan

Nasa then entered the PHP 55K Main Event along with Jaideep Sajwan, and though both of them sailed into Day 2, only Sajwan was able to make the cut for Day 3 where he finished 49th for ₹1.43 Lakhs. The tournament was a resounding success with 515 entries collecting a gigantic PHP 24.97 Million prize pool which was at least 2.5 times the advertised PHP 10 Million (~₹1.36 Crores) guarantee! Peru’s Yohn Paredes struck an ICM deal with Korea’s Sim Jae Kyung and defeated the latter to capture the title for PHP 4,369,000.

Yohn Paredes wins the APT Philippines Main Event
Yohn Paredes wins the APT Philippines Main Event

Continuing the APT saga is the PHP 10 Million GTD Championships Event that played out its first starting flight today.

Read the complete story here

The Big Wrap

After a hugely successful inaugural run in April, The Big Wrap PLO festival returned to King’s Casino and Resort in Rozvadov on September 9. The seven-tournament stop featured a combined guarantee of €1.5 Million. Gunning in the nail-biting PLO action were several Indian players including the likes of Manish Goenka, Ankit Kapoor, and Vinay Rajpal. All three of them played the Big Wrap Warm-up PLO with only Goenka managing to cross the money line, finishing 6th for €2,522 (~₹2 Lakhs). The event was ultimately taken down by Richard Toth who collected €33,395 after a four-way deal.

Manish Goenka - The Big Wrap Warmup PLO Day 2
Manish Goenka

It was the €2,350 buy-in The Big Wrap Main Event €1 Million GTD that played out next. Turkey’s Adon Ursu proved the last man standing, and outlasted 473 others to take home a personal-best €200,000.

Adon Ursu wins The Big Wrap Main Event
Adon Ursu wins The Big Wrap Main Event

Read the complete story here

WPT Japan

The second stop of the World Poker Tour (WPT) Asia Swing Season XVIII was the WPT Japan that made its third comeback from September 14 to 16 at the Gajoen hotel. Headlining the series was the ¥20,000 buy-in Main Event that garnered 541 entries via seven starting flights. Winning the lion’s share of the prize money was Junheng Situ who defeated Osamu Shishime heads-up. Since regulatory restrictions in Japan prohibit payouts in cash, Situ collected a WPT passport worth $13,000 and accrued 100 points for the WPT Asia Swing Leaderboard.

Junheng Situ
Junheng Situ

Read the complete story here

PokerStars Discontinues PokerStars Caribbean Adventure (PCA)

The hugely popular PokerStars Caribbean Adventure (PCA) that has run nearly 15 annual editions since 2004 has officially been discontinued by PokerStars.

PokerStars scraps PCA

Read the complete story here

Cary Katz Takes Down Super High Roller Bowl London

Poker Central supremo Cary Katz dominated a 12- player field at the inaugural Super High Roller Bowl London that played out at the Aspers Casino in London recently. Catz took home the title and a career-best £2.1 Million.

Cary Katz wins the Super High Roller Bowl London
Cary Katz wins the Super High Roller Bowl London

Read the complete story here

And with this, we conclude this week’s roundup of the latest news updates and developments from the world of poker. We will return again next week with our weekly report, stay tuned.

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