Every poker festival tends to include a new twist in their event lineup and at the Asia Poker League Reloaded, it was definitely the team event. Unlike other team tournaments, the format for this one was quite unusual, and upon witnessing the action, it seemed extremely fun to play with players allowed to collude as part of the game.
Team Event Mechanics:
- Shootout format
- Each team is composed of 3 players
- Each table is composed of three complete teams (9 players total)
- The first team to lose two members is eliminated from the game
- Last team standing at the table advances to the next round and so on
- Final Table reached with last three teams competing; same rules apply
There were 20 teams that entered the event with each team contributing CNY 4,000 (US$580) for a prize pool of CNY 73,600 (US$10,690). The event had an international flavor to it with a majority of the teams comprised of players from their respective nations.
Team Event action
Once the event began, all eyes were on one specific table, a Japanese team with famous pop idol GACKT as their captain.
The round saw his team up against a Korean team led by Steve Yeah and a Chinese team led by Zhang Yan Chun, the owner of the host venue, the Beijing Poker Club.
At a separate table was another Korean team with SJ Kim at the helm;
Malaysia was also represented with Sam Ng as captain;
and a vibrant Team India led by Vikram Verma with not-so Indian James Kim joining them.
After several elimination rounds and the hour running very late, the final table of three teams was reached with all of them now in the money.
Team GACKT was still in contention however despite their efforts, they eventually fell to a local team to finish in a respectable 2nd place. The winning team received the CNY 36,800 (US$5,228) first place cash prize.
The APL is ongoing from April 15-22, 2017 at the Beijing Poker Club and the Somuchpoker team is onsite and ready to update you with all of the highlights. So stay tuned!