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While many poker outfits are focused on tapping the growing market in China, one country silently making its way back into the arena is the Republic of India. Several years ago, tournament poker was booming in the country and showing a lot of potential. However, after a tariff was imposed, the numbers immediately plunged, and the game suffered a huge setback.
Fast-forward to today, times have changed. India is back on track with the players and poker organizations now well adjusted to the mandatory taxes. Poker is once again on the rise at the second most populous country in the world and just days ago, the first of many big poker events to come took place in Goa, India.
Fourth edition of the Deltin Poker Tournament
Yesterday, India concluded its first big poker festival of the year, the Deltin Poker Tournament in partnership with Indian online poker site Adda52. The event guaranteed INR 150 Lakhs (US$225,000) spread across six events, running from February 23rd-27th onboard the Deltin Royale, a luxury floating casino in Goa, India.
This is not the first time the DPT has hosted such an event. Last year, the DPT hosted three highly successful events held in January, August, and November. For their fourth edition, the poker brand promised and delivered a festival with a more lucrative guarantee. The highlighted tournament, the INR 35K buy-in Main Event, boasted of a guaranteed INR 55 Lakhs (US$82,500) while the INR 60K High Roller event offered a INR 50 Lakhs (US$75,000) guarantee.
DPT’s big winners
Throughout the five days, the festival saw a total of 1,264 entries aboard the ship with the Main Event turning up 303 entries to surpass the INR 10M guarantee. Newcomer Imran Khan claimed his first ever tournament trophy and the INR 2,835,000 (US$42,486) first prize.
While that was a huge chunk of wad for Khan, the player who took home the single largest payout of the festival was Manoj Pentakota winning the high roller event for a massive INR 3,300,000 (US$49,457). This is a big victory for Pentakota who just came off a 6th place finish at the WPT National Cambodia in early January.
The highest turnout of the event was seen at the INR 10K Kickoff with a booming 355 entries that easily doubled the INR 15K Lakhs guarantee. It was nothing short of a blazing start with the first trophy and the INR 885,000 (US$13,260) first prize going to Jasven Saigal, a well-known pro in India. Back in 2012, Saigal shipped in his biggest score of US$17,223 for his runner-up finish at the India Poker Legend Main Event.
Other winners were Banman Warr for the INR 10K + 5K Bounty event, and Jagdeep Singh who picked up the last trophy of the festival at the INR 15K 6-Max PLO event.
Kunal Patni wins the online Warm-Up
Prior to the festivities on the ship, the DPT held an online Warm-Up event with INR 5 Lakhs (US$7,500) guarantee. Well known pro, Kunal Patni, one of the most recognizable Indian players in the Asian circuit today, swept it for a INR 2,13,000 (US$3,190) payday. In addition to his victory, Patni ran deep in several events, and vied for a back-to-back title at the PLO event – which he won last year – but it was not to be as he ran aground in 4th place.
Article by Triccia David