APT Korea Seoul 2019: Go Saito wins the Main Event; Early highlights of the series

The Asian Poker Tour is in full swing at Grand Walkerhill Paradise Casino for the fifth leg of their calendar season. APT Korea Seoul 2019 kicked off on May 29 and is slated to run for twelve days to conclude on June 9. Half of the events have already completed including the Main Event. We’ve got those early highlights for you along with what’s in store in the days ahead.

Go Saito wins the Main Event

Go Saito
Go Saito – Asian Poker Tour

Returning to Seoul for only their second tour visit, the APT came in with an ambitious KRW 180 Million (~US$ 152,000) Main Event guarantee. Despite the locals prohibited from attending, 180 runners representing other parts of the world ponied up the KRW 1,320,000 (~US$ 1,100) buy-in. This was more than enough to surpass the guarantee for a sweeter prize pool of KRW 209,520,000 (~US$ 177,000).

After five days of heated competition running from May 31 to June 4, Japan’s Go Saito was able to bring down USA’s Calvin Sungwon Lee. Lee dominated the charts at the end of Day 2 and Day 3 bringing in an enormous stack to the Final 8 race however he still couldn’t nail it shut. Instead, Saito prevailed and captured his first-ever live tournament title and largest score of KRW 54,364,000 (~US$ 46,000).

This was an incredible accomplishment for Saito who, in addition to winning the Main Event, pocketed KRW 5,973,000 (~US$ 5,000) for his runner-up finish at the Monster Stack opening event.

Final 8 payouts
1st Go Saito – Japan – KRW 54,364,000
2nd Calvin Sungwon Lee – KRW 36,242,000
3rd Koichi Nozaki – Japan – KRW 25,195,000
4th Pak Aleksandr – Uzbekistan – KRW 18,198,000
5th Haruta Koichi – Japan – KRW 13,609,000
6th Jaepil Geoffrey You – USA – KRW 10,503,000
7th Edgar Kim – Hong Kong – KRW 8,341,000
8th Wai Tak Choy – Hong Kong – KRW 6,796,000

The Main Event paid out 18 places. Outside of the top 8 was Japanese pro Tetsuya Tsuchikawa in 14th place. Among those that fell without any profit were defending champion Jinwoo Kim and decorated APT champion Takumi Samejima.

Other winners

Apart from the big one, there were 22 side events for players to enjoy. Half have already seen its champion. Here are the biggest winners so far:

Super High Rollers

Daniyar Avbakikov
Daniyar Avbakikov – Asian Poker Tour

The KRW 5,300,000 (~US$ 4,500) buy-in Super High Rollers event attracted 18 players. Among them was Hong Kong’s Wayne Heung who has two Super High Roller titles under his belt, one from WPT Vietnam 2019 and the other from APL Vietnam 2019. Heung wasn’t able to bring this one in though. Taking it down was Kazakhstan’s Daniyar Avbakikov. Daniyar shipped KRW 49,761,000 (~US$ 42,000) and his first APT title. This is the single largest side event first prize so far.

1st Daniyar Avbakikov – Kazakhstan – KRW 49,761,000
2nd Yuan Yilu – China – KRW 24,444,000
3rd Zhou Yue Yang – China – KRW 13,095,000

High Rollers Single Day #1

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Sakurai Kengo – Asian Poker Tour

The first KRW 2,150,000 (~US$ 1,800) buy-in High Rollers Single Day event drew 29 to the felt for a prize pool of KRW 56,260,000 (~US$ 47,500). The Japanese dominated by claiming the top two spots. Earning the biggest cut of KRW 24,036,000 (~US$ 20,300) was Kengo Sakurai. Sakurai has done well in Korea this year. In mid-April, he nearly won the APPT Korea Incheon Single Day High Roller event finishing in 2nd place.

1st Sakurai Kengo – Japan – KRW 24,036,000
2nd Harita Koichi – Japan – KRW 13,932,000
3rd Wong Fukoh – Hong Kong – KRW 8,624,000
4th Shinagawa Kei – Japan – KRW 5,687,000
5th Yun Bawoo Kyupshik – Korea – 3,981,000

Dicky Hang Tsang wins two events

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Dicky Hang Tsang – Asian Poker Tour

The only player so far to have won two events is Hong Kong’s Dicky Hang Tsang. He jumped out with a victory at the KRW 550,000 (~US$ 465) buy-in Dafabet Head Hunter event by besting a field of 39 entries. This earned him KRW 5,160,000 (~US$ 4,300) out of the KRW 15,015,000 (~US$ 12,700) cash prize pool.

1st Dicky Hang Tsang – Hong Kong – KRW 5,160,000
2nd Kenji Hata – Japan – KRW 3,316,000
3rd Tsang Heilam – Hong Kong – KRW 2,236,000
4th Kose Ichinose – Japan – KRW1,575,000
5th Kengo Sakurai – Japan – KRW 1,156,000
6th Edward Yam Chun Ho – Hong Kong – KRW 880,000
7th Chi Chung Cheung – Hong Kong – KRW 692,000

Days later, he followed it up with another win, this time at the KRW 440,000 (~US$ 370) buy-in Short Deck event for KRW 3,926,000 (~US$ 3,300). The event saw 24 entries to produce a prize pool of KRW 9,312,000 (~US$ 7,900).

1st Dicky Hang Tsang – Hong Kong – KRW 3,926,000
2nd Jeffrey Kuen Wai Lo – Hong Kong – KRW 2,443,000
3rd Dom Choi – Austria – KRW 1,420,000
4th Kota Nakano – Japan – KRW 894,000

Opening Events

Monster Stack

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John Jisang Chung – Asian Poker Tour

One of the most popular events in the APT lineup is the KRW 550,000 buy-in Monster Stack event. It is very popular in fact that the tour has two of them offered. The first one was the series opener. It drew 64 entries for a prize pool of KRW 31,040,000 (~US$ 26,300). Defeating Go Saito at heads up was USA’s Chung John Jisang. Chung shipped the first trophy of the series along with KRW 8,958,000 (~US$ 7,500).

1st John Jisang Chung – USA – KRW 8,958,000
2nd Go Saito – Japan – KRW 5,973,000
3rd Melvin Bender – Germany – KRW 4,152,000
4th Dicky Hang Tsang – Hong Kong – KRW 2,999,000
5th An Hieon Woo – Korea – KRW 2,243,000
6th Cui Hongri – China -KRW 1,731,000
7th Jonathan Ong Wen Hao – Singapore – KRW 1,375,000
8th Kimura Lee – Korea – KRW 1,120,000
9th Tsang Heilam – Hong Kong – KRW 933,000
10th Sungha Kim – KRW 778,000
11th Kojo Kunimaro – Japan – KRW 778,000

High Rollers #1

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Gu Huidong – Asian Poker Tour

The other event that opened the series was the KRW 3,200,000 (~US$ 2,700) buy-in High Rollers #1. It drew 17 entries for a prize pool of KRW 49,470,000 (~US$ 42,000). Three players got paid. Macau’s Gu Huidong won it for KRW 16,820,000 (~US$ 14,000), however it was runner-up Japan’s Kishi Takeshi who secured the larger payout of KRW 25,229,000 (~US$ 21,000) on a heads up deal. Japan’s Haruta Koichi took 3rd for KRW 7,421,000.

More events lined up

With the festival into its second half, what everyone will want to come out for is the Championships Event. This is the tour’s second most highly revered tournament. Structure is similar to the Main Event with slow escalating blinds on a 60 minute pace. It comes with a KRW 180,000,000 (~US$ 152,000) guarantee. Buy-in is KRW 1,980,000 (~US$ 1,700). This is the first time the APT offers holds this event in Seoul. As advertised, all events including this one will utilize the shot clock and the Ante Big Blind format. Schedule:

Day 1A: Wednesday, June 5
Day 1B: Thursday, June 6
Day 2: Friday, June 7
Day 3: Saturday, June 8
Final 8: Sunday, June 9

Each starting day plays 8 levels. Registration closes at the start of Level 10 in Day 2.

Additionally, there are other events to try and win such as the turbo events, NLH events, last Monster Stack event, and three more High Rollers. There is also a Dafabet Players Party taking place on Thursday, June 6 at 10pm local time. Somuchpoker will have the festival’s final results as soon as it concludes.