The New Year has only begun and already many highly recognized players in the Asian circuit have started their year with a loud bang. With two big poker events having just concluded in the Philippines this month, the WPT National Philippines and the Asian Poker Tour Kickoff , players such as Korea’s Soo Jo Kim, Sim Jae Kyung, Japan’s Tetsuya Tsuchikawa, Iori Yogo, UK’s Samad Razavi, and Norway’s Henrik Tollefsen have bared their teeth this early in the year.
Kicking off 2016 with 1 title and 7 cashes, was Japan’s Tetsuya Tsuchikawa. He captured the Head Hunter event at the WPTN Philippines, and also cashed in the 2nd Chance side event. A week after, he was heating up the felt at the APT Kickoff finishing up with 6 ITM’s, earning him the top spot in the APT Player of the Year 2016 rankings. Detailing some of his APT 2016 stats, Tsuchikawa placed 2nd in the Deep Stack Turbo, Deep Stack Hyper Turbo, and High Rollers Event. He also placed 3rd in the Main Event.
Soo Jo Kim
Korea’s SJ Kim was a very happy camper after having won the WPTN Philippines Poker King Cup event just days after the turn of the New Year. Following that, he claimed 3 more trophies and 2 additional cashes at the APT Kickoff. Kim won the Head Hunter event, and cashed in the High Rollers, and the Greed No Limit Hold ‘em. He is ranked 2nd to Tsuchikawa in the APT POY standings.
Norway’s Henrik Tollefsen also did well at the WPTN Philippines having placed 2nd to Canada’s Linh Tran at the High Rollers event. At the APT Kickoff, he bagged a trophy at the Pot Limit Omaha High Rollers event. At the currently ongoing Aussie Millions, Tollefsen earned a 7th place finish at the NLH Shot Clock Shootout event and also cashed at the Six Max event.
UK’s Samad Razavi, the quadruple crown APT POY 2012-2015 champion, was also showing his teeth at the APT Kickoff with 1 title claimed and a total of 5 ITM’s. Razavi won the 6 Handed Turbo w/Antes event but was denied a trophy at the Greed NLH by Kim.
Sam Razavi (Photo APT)
Japan’s Iori Yogo opened up his year with a big win at the WPTN Philippines by claiming the Freezout PLO side event. He continued his momentum and won the Ante Only Turbo event at the APT Kickoff. He also cashed in two other events at the APT, a 2nd place finish at the Pot Limit Omaha High Rollers which Tollefsen won, and a 3rd place finish at the 6 Handed Turbo event that went to Razavi.
Sim Jae Kyung
Korea’s Sim Jae Kyung, though most know him as Simba, was the first player to win an APT Open Face Chinese Pineapple event. He has now a second OFC trophy after winning the High Rollers OFC last week. Simba also cashed in two additional events at the APT Kickoff, a 3rd place finish at the High Rolllers event and a 12th place finish at the Main Event.
With these players already displaying their consistency and toughness at the felt, and with many more events happening in Asia this year, 2016 is looking like a big year for these players, especially for the APT POY standings.
APT Player of the Year 2016 Standings (Top 10)
|7||Yah Loon Lim||Singapore||0||4||393.20|
|10||Nick Blackburn||United States||0||4||298.20|