2017 ACOP Early highlights: First Spadie for the Philippines; Sparrow Cheung crosses the million mark

Despite a passing typhoon causing a one day damper on the 2017 Asia Championship of Poker, the festival is now in full swing at City of Dreams Macau. The 17 day event kicked off on October 13th and will be running until October 29th with 24 events lined up and HK$31 million in guaranteed prizes up for grabs. With nearly a week of events completed, 7 Spadies have been claimed along with stories of new champions emerging, records being broken, and milestones reached. Here’s a read on some of those early highlights.

Adones Carmona wins first Spadie for the Philippines

Adones Carmona - Photo PokerStars Live Macau
Adones Carmona – Photo PokerStars Live Macau

The 2017 ACOP kicked off with the 1M Guaranteed Spadie as the opening attraction. As seems to be the trend with all PokerStars events in Asia this year, it was another record breaking turnout with 573 entries in total – surpassing last year’s 566 entries. This of course drove the first pot of the festival beyond the advertised guarantee to a roaring HK$2,000,916.

After four days of action, Adones Carmona from the Philippines became the first titleholder of the festival. With his victory, Carmona became the first player from his country to ever win the coveted Spadie. He claimed HK$435,000 (US$55,700 approx) which is his largest live win to-date. This is also Carmona’s first victory outside of his homeland.

After his victory, Carmona attended one of the regular events offered at the ACOP, the 6-Handed tournament. He added another HK$18,390 to his earnings with a 3rd place finish out of 81 entrants.

Final Table Results
1. Adones Carmona (Philippines) — HK$435,000
2. Tatiana Barausova (Russia) — HK$270,000
3. Yueming Liu (Hong Kong) — HK$167,016
4. Ta-Wei Tou (Taiwan) — HK$127,500
5. Benjamin Martin (UK) — HK$88,200
6. Jingjun Xia (China) — HK$70,200
7. Christopher Cheung (Hong Kong) — HK$57,200
8. Jiarong Qiu (China) — HK$48,200
9. Chengbei Li (China) — HK$40,200

Sparrow Park Yu Cheung crosses US$1M in live earnings

Sparrow Cheung - Photo PokerStars Live Macau
Sparrow Cheung – Photo PokerStars Live Macau

It has taken him 8 years but Park Yu Cheung aka Sparrow has done it. After two early cashes at the ongoing 2017 ACOP – a 57th place finish at the 1M Guaranteed Spadie and a 3rd place finish at the 6-Handed Championship -, Sparrow has crossed over the US$1 million mark in live earnings. Prior to these two cashes, Cheung showed US$993,619 in total live earnings dating back to 2010. Combine that total to his latest ACOP pick up of HK$117,000 (US$15K approx) total, the master of “in the money” has now entered the seven-figure range. Additionally, Sparrow is running second to Alan King Lun Lau in the Asia Player of the Year race. This festival is his last chance to earn points in hopes of usurping the leader.

Ralph Wong wins over 1M HKD in the Single Day 50K

Ralph Wong - Photo PokerStars Live Macau
Ralph Wong – Photo PokerStars Live Macau

USA’s Ralph Wong became the first millionaire at the festivities taking home HK$1,058,600 (US$135,700 approx) after winning the Single Day 50K event. Wong overcame an 86-entry field filled with some the most highly decorated players from Asia such as Singaporean pro Bryan Huang Diwei (5th) and China’s Yuan Li (10th). With all of Wong’s stats hailing from the USA, this may well be his first victory in Asia.

Single Day 50K Results 
1. Ralph Wong (USA) — HK$1,058,600
2. Siow Choon Tong (Malaysia) — HK$705,700
3. Roman Korenev (Russia) — HK$470,600
4. Nan Hong (China) — HK$392,140
5. Bryan Huang (Singapore) — HK$313,700
6. Zhou Tong (China) — HK$274,400
7. Xuming Qi (China) — HK$235,200
8. Jarred Graham (Australia) — HK$196,000
9. Chin Wei Lim (Malaysia) — HK$156,800
10. Yuan Li (China) — HK$117,600

Other early ACOP winners

The 2017 ACOP has already handed out a total of seven Spadies with Adones Carmona and Ralph Wong as part of that list. Here are the other five new titleholders.

Event 2: Shootout Championship – Xin Fan – China – HK$115,260
Event 3: Knockout Championship – Brian Altman – USA – HK$173,100
Event 4: 6-Handed Championship – William Harrison Givens IV – USA – HK$253,500
Event 5: PLO Championship – Tobias Ziegler – Germany – HK$260,000
Event 6: Deepstack Championship – Martijn Gerrits – Netherlands – HK$421,100

Article by Triccia David

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Tricia David

Tricia David has long experience as a recreational poker player and has been covering poker events since 2010 for numerous outfits in Asia. She spent one year working part time with Poker Portal Asia then became editor and lead writer for all event coverage of the Philippine Poker Tour (PPT). Under the PPT, she overlooked content for their website, and produced live updates on all their events. In addition, she served as the live and online events website content writer for the Asian Poker Tour. Currently, she does live events reporting in Asia for online news site Somuchpoker and is also one of their news contributors.

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