APT Korea Seoul 2019: Punnat Punsri ships the Championships Event; Edward Yam wins Player of the Series

The Asian Poker Tour wrapped up another festival in their 2019 season calendar. Running from May 29 to June 9 was APT Korea Seoul 2019 at Grand Walkerhill Paradise Casino. For the first time in Seoul, the APT offered a jam-packed schedule of 24 games along with KRW 360 Million (~US$ 304,000) in guaranteed prizes.

The first half witnessed big winners that included Japan’s Go Saito at the Main Event. The second half was equally exciting with Thailand’s Punnat Punsri shipping the Championships Event to claim the single largest event payout of KRW 60,430,000 (~US$ 51,000). Winning the festival’s most meritable title was APT Player of the Series champion, Hong Kong’s Edward Chun Ho Yam. There were plenty of victories at the festival. We’ve got those stories for you below.

Punnat Punsri wins the Championships Event

Winner and runner up
Punnat Punsri & Kaixiang Ye 

For the first time in Seoul, the APT brought with them their highly revered Championships Event. Alike the Main Event, it came with a KRW 180 Million (~US$ 152,000) guarantee. After five days of competition running from June 5 to 9, Thailand’s Punnat Punsri overcame the 124 entries to claim KRW 60,430,000 (~US$ 51,000). This became Punsri’s largest live score and second-ever career victory.

Final 8 payouts

Prize pool: KRW 216,486,000 – Buyin: KRW 1,980,000 – Entries 124 – ITM: 18 places

1st Punnat Punsri – Thailand – KRW 60,430,000
2nd Kaixiang Ye – China – KRW 40,268,000
3rd Andrew An – USA – KRW 28,006,000
4th Peng Meng Dian – China – KRW 20,228,000
5th Shoma Ishikawa – Japan – KRW 15,128,000
6th Masaki Fujitani – Japan KRW 11,675,000
7th Daniel Lee – USA – KRW 9,271,000
8th Daniyar Avbakikov – Kazakhstan – KRW 7,554,000

Edward Chun Ho Yam wins APT Player of the Series

Edward Yam Chun Ho
Edward Yam Chun Ho – Photo APT

One of the most coveted titles of any APT festival is the Player of the Series title. The victory is awarded to the player that accrues the most points overall. Out of the 24 games, 23 were point-generating. Earning the win was Hong Kong’s Edward Chun Ho Yam. Impressively, Yam did not champion any of the events however he did cash in an astounding six events.

6th place – Dafabet Head Hunter
3rd place – Short Deck High Rollers Single Day
2nd place – Deep Stack Hyper Turbo #1
4th place – Deep Stack Turbo 1
8th place – Monster Stack 2
4th place – Deep Stack Hyper Turbo 2

Placing 2nd was Japan’s Go Saito who had two more deep runs in addition to his huge victory at the Main Event. Claiming 3rd place was Hong Kong’s Tsang Dicky Siu Hang. Tsang also had three cashes of which two were side event victories.

Multi-event winners

Early in the series, Tsang Dicky Siu Hang became the first player to land two titles. The latter half saw two players join that exclusive club – Kazakhstan’s Daniyar Avbakikov and USA’s Bernard Park. Avbakikov won the Super High Rollers, proceeded to ship the Deep Stack Turbo 2 event for KRW 4,333,000 (~US$ 3,600) just before cashing in 8th place at the Championships Event for KRW 7,554,000 (~US$ 6,300).

Bernard Park
Bernard Park – Photo APT

As for Bernard Park, he championed the Pot Limit Omaha Hi 2 event then followed it up with a win at the No Limit Hold’em Single Day #2. He had a third cash for finishing 3rd at the WeLoveSport Super Deep Stack Turbo. In total, he earned a combined total of KRW 11,527,500 (~US$ 9,700).

High Rollers events

There were three high wager events on the lower half of the festival roster. Japan’s Kota Nakano won the Short Deck High Rollers for KRW 18,799,000 (~US$ 16,000). He overcame the 17 runners. All of Nakano’s live career cashes were at APT events. This was his first-ever win and first-ever five figure payout.

Kota Nakano
Kota Nakano – Photo APT


Prize pool: KRW 32,980,000 (~US$ 28,000) – Buy-in: KRW 2,150,000 (~US$ 1,800)

1st Kota Nakano – Japan – KRW 18,799,000
2nd Shinagawa Kei – Japan – KRW 9,234,000
3rd Edward Yam Chun Ho – Hong Kong – KRW 4,947,000

Two events closing the series were the High Rollers #2 and the High Rollers Single Day 3. For the KRW 3,200,000 (~US$ 2,700) buy-in High Rollers #2, Russian pro Vladimir Mefodichev topped the 28 runners to lift his first APT title and KRW 34,810,000 (~US$ 29,400). This was Mefodichev’s largest score so far for 2019 however it is by no means the largest of his career. Back in 2012, Mefodichev nearly strapped a WSOP gold for his runner-up finish at the US$1,500 No Limit Hold’em event. He earned US$ 456,217.

Vladimir Mefodichev
Vladimir Mefodichev – Photo APT


Prize pool: KRW 81,480,000 (~US$ 69,000)

1st Vladimir Mefodichev – Russia – KRW 34,810,000
2nd Jamie Jin Ming Lee – USA – KRW 20,177,000
3rd Yasuyuki Tsuji – Japan – KRW 12,490,000
4th Zhou Yue Yang – China – KRW 8,237,000
5th Zentaro Nakayashiki – Japan – KRW 5,766,000

The last event of the series was the High Rollers Single Day 3. 28 runners put up the KRW 2,150,000 (~US$ 1,800) buy-in for a prize pool of KRW 54,320,000 (~US$ 46,000). Cutting a deal at heads up were Thananat Therdtakoonrat and Ronald Yomin Choi. Although Choi had the larger stack and was guaranteed the higher pay, it was Therdtakoonrat who rose to the throne.

Thananat Therdtakoonrat
Thananat Therdtakoonrat – Photo APT


1st Thananat Therdtakoonrat – Thailand – KRW 17,684,000
2nd Ronald Yomin Choi – USA – KRW 18,974,000
3rd Kusakabe Shijegi – Japan – KRW 8,327,000
4th Ahn Myung Keun – New Zealand – KRW 5,491,000
5th Yuan Yilu – China – KRW 3,844,000

Other events

The Monster Stack 2 had the second largest side event turnout of 60 entries, the first edition had slightly more at 64. Winning it was Czech Republic pro Michal Mrakes for KRW 10,339,000 (~US$ 8,700).

Mrakes is a rare sight in the Asian live circuit with cashes in the region seen within the past two weeks. Still, he is already raking it in with two Asian live wins and deep runs. While this was his second title, his first one was at the Japan High Roller Festival 7 in Busan, South Korea. He took down the Super High Rollers for US$ 28,694. He also nearly won that festival’s High Roller Main Event finishing 2nd for US$ 19,567.


1st Michal Mrakes – Czech Republic – KRW 10,339,000
2nd Daiki Horikawa – Japan – KRW 6,892,000
3rd Jeffrey Kuen Wai Lo – Hong Kong – KRW 4,791,000|
4th Dian Koszegi – Hungary – KRW 3,461,000
5th Masahiro Marumoto – Japan – KRW 2,588,000
6th Chen Chin Ho – Taiwan – KRW 1,997,000
7th Kwok Ting Shum – Hong Kong – KRW 1,586,000
8th Edward Yam Chun Ho – Hong Kong – KRW 1,292,000
9th Azusa Kotabashi – Japan – KRW 1,077,000
10th Tanaka Masatoshi – Japan – KRW 897,000

Article by Tricia David

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Louis Hartwell

Graduated in Media Communication at the University of Lausanne, Louis Hartman is a co-founder of He began his career in Cambodia as freelance journalist. In same time he was making his living by playing poker every night at that time. Intense learner, he read dozens of poker strategy books to improve his skills during many years. With a strong interest about poker "behind the scene" in Asia and his communication skills, Louis launched Somuchpoker in 2014.

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