2017: Breakthrough year for Matt Kirk?

Australian poker professional Matt Kirk, also known as “Aussie Matt” has been catching the public’s eye and ear quite a bit these days. Known to be more of a cash game Pot Limit Omaha player that spends his career in the shadows playing incredibly high stakes private games, it is odd to see him in the spotlight these past several months.

Matthew Kirk
Matthew Kirk- Photo Pokercentral.com

A Breakthrough year?

In June 2017, Aussie Matt was the buzz of the poker world when the 2+2 forum released the official summons of Kirk’s lawsuit against Czech casino owner Leon Tsoukernik regarding a US$2M unpaid debt. According to the suit, Kirk and Tsoukernik were involved in a heads up match at Aria Resort and Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada. During the session, Tsoukernik took out four separate loans from Kirk amounting to US$3M. After the game concluded, the Czech refused to pay the loan, but did cough up US$1M a week later. The remaining US$2M is still in dispute.

The second Aussie Matt sighting came in mid-August with the Perth native in action at Poker After Dark. The three-day televised high stakes invitational cash game initially had the poker world stirring with the participation of the ever elusive Tom Dwan. For the first two nights, Dwan stole the show with his top performance however on the third night the thunder shifted to the aggressive-playing Kirk who joined the action on the last day. Kirk crushed the table and finished the session as one of the biggest winners.


More: Watch: Poker After Dark Back with a Bang


Online action

Last month, Kirk was spotted once again, this time at the high stakes virtual felt in Partypoker. This was quite an unusual sighting since Kirk is known to be purely a live game player. Kirk was playing Trickett’s invitational PLO Hi US$100/US$200. Once again, he finished on top, this time as the biggest winner with over US$300K. Also seated at the table were Viktor Blom, Sam Trickett, and Leon Tsoukernik.

With these documented “rare” Kirk moments, and with him on the winning end, we do wonder if this is the start of Aussie Matt attending more televised and online high stakes games.

First apparition and beginnings

Back in 2005, Kirk was just another poker player in the community who, like many others, got his career started in the casino setting. After he transitioned to private games, he discovered that playing very high stakes was more his style. Preferably high stakes PLO live private games. It didn’t take long for the elite to notice this aggressive unknown player especially that he, Aussie Matt, liked to play big stakes and also liked to give a lot of action.

In 2015, the mysterious Kirk bought in twice to the US$250K buy-in Super High Roller cash game in Aria. Apparently he signed up because of boredom. There were no PLO games running at the time and No Limit Hold’em filled the void.

During that event, Doyle Brunson described Kirk as “a bit of a maniac”.

There is also an ongoing rumor that online player “andrewkirk” is “Aussie Matt”. The results tallied by the HighStakes Database under “andrewkirk” are a combination of high stakes PLO and NLH games from years 2009 – 2013. If it were indeed Kirk, then he is in the hole nearly US$900K. But as of today, there is still no evidence proving this to be

Article by Triccia David


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