Asia live events in March: APT Mystery Bounty Weekend; CPG Tour Haitang; VSOP + APL Championship III; Hanoi Spring Championship; Baazi Poker Tour 2022; PokerStars LIVE Manila Series

Live action is making a fierce return in Asia with numerous events announced for the month of March. For players in the Philippines, China, Vietnam, and India, here’s a look at what’s happening just around the bend. 

Asian Poker Tour Mystery Bounty Weekend: March 3 to 6

Land-based poker operator Asian Poker Tour will finally host its first live event after being grounded for two years. The brand’s much-anticipated return promises to be extremely fun as it launches the first ever APT Mystery Bounty Weekend featuring PHP 3.3 Million (~US$ 64,100) in guaranteed prizes.

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The weekend series is slated for March 3 to 6 at partner venue Resorts World Manila in the Philippines. Only fully vaccinated players will be allowed to participate. Proof of vaccination is required and masks are mandatory. In the announcement, RWM Gaming Operations Director, Arturo Basa expressed,

“It has been very challenging for poker these last couple of years due to the pandemic and nature of the game. But we are excited to be hosting a poker tournament to kick off 2022 with the APT, and everyone can expect us to be hosting many poker events this coming year despite the challenges” 

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APT Philippines, RWM – Credit: APT

A brief introduction of this upcoming festival. Unlike the APT’s regular bounty tournaments, at Mystery Bounty events players only start receiving bounty rewards once the field has reached the money. From there, every player knocked out will earn a piece of the main prize pool (as normal) while winning players will blindly draw for their bounty reward. The bounty reward “amount” remains a mystery until it has been drawn and revealed. APT General Manager and Executive Tournament Director, Lloyd Fontillas explained,

“Basically, ITM players collect bounty chips as they eliminate players, and once a player that has collected a bounty chip gets eliminated, they get to draw to a pile of sealed envelopes that will contain the value of the bounty they will be awarded. Just picturing someone getting lucky enough to draw the top prize is making me excited and will be fun to watch!” 

The four day schedule serves up five Mystery Bounty tournaments, headlined by the Mystery Bounty Main Event PH₱ 3,000,000 guaranteed. Here are all the details. 

Mystery Bounty Main Event
Date: March 4 to 6
Buy in: PHP 13,200 (~US$ 256)
Guarantee: PHP 3,000,000 (~US$ 58,270)
Entry flights: 4
*Note: PHP 4,000 of each buy in goes to the bounty pool

Event 1: Mystery Bounty Single Day Introduction Event
Date: Thursday, March 3
Buy in: PH₱ 3,300 (~US$ 64)
Guarantee: PH₱ 300,000 (~US$ 5,827)
*Note: PH₱ 1,000 of each buy in goes to the bounty pool

Event 2: Mystery Bounty Single Day High Rollers
Date: Friday, March 4
Buy in: PH₱ 32,000 (~US$ 620)
*Note: PH₱ 10,000 of each buy in goes to the bounty pool

Event 3: Mystery Bounty Deep Stack Turbo
Date: Saturday, March 5
Buy in: PH₱ 6,600 (~US$ 128)
*Note: PH₱ 2,000 of each buy in goes to the bounty pool

Event 4: Mystery Bounty Super Deep Stack Turbo
Date: Sunday, March 6
Buy in: PH₱ 9,900 (~US$ 192)
*Note: PH₱ 3,000 of each buy in goes to the bounty pool

EVENT POSTPONED! China Poker Games Tour Haitang: March 5 to 11

Throughout the pandemic, live events have been allowed to run in China, give or take a few months here and there. The most sought-after events were those hosted by premier brand China Poker Games. Despite a two week postponement last year, the brand still assembled its grandest annual CPG Championship yet with 3,283 Main Event entries for a massive prize pool of US$ 4.9 Million. No other brand nor Main Event in Asia has come close to amassing those figures.

cpg satellite
Credit: China Poker Games

This year, the CPG aims to smash its record turnout as it celebrates its 10th year anniversary. The ambition is to reach 4,000 entries across multiple live and online satellite events. The first live satellite series is CPG Tour Haitang which takes place in Haitang Bay at the Atlantis Hotel Sanya from March 5 to 11. In addition to the Main Event satellite, the seven day schedule is littered with 23 varied side tournaments. For more information, head to the CPG App or CPG website. Although borders are still closed to international tourists, foreigners already in China can participate, all that’s required is a green pass and negative RT-PCR test. 

Main Event
Dates: March 5 to 11
Buy in: RMB 9,500 (~US$ 1,500)
*Note there are three Day 1 flights (Day 1A, Day 1B, Day 1C) followed by Day 2, Day 3, Day 4, and Day 5 (final day). 

Viet Nam Series of Poker + APL Championship III: March 14 to 20

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Credit: VSOP Facebook page

Vietnam experienced its share of closures throughout the epidemic but coming March 15, the country plans to fully open its borders to foreign tourists. This is just in time to attend the Viet Nam Series of Poker Championship III which takes place from March 14 to 20 in Hanoi. 

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Credit: VSOP Facebook page

In partnership with the Asia Poker League, the series features a whopping VN₫ 5 Billion (~US$ 219,100) in guarantees. The bulk is reserved for the highlighted VSOP Main Event which comes with VN₫ 2 Billion in tow. The APL will also be sponsoring two events, APL Hanoi Dragon VN₫ 500 Million guaranteed and the APL Bounty Special VN₫ 300 Million guaranteed.  In total, 13 tournaments are spread across the seven days with buy ins from VN₫ 1,200,000 (~US$ 53) to VN₫ 33,000,000 (~US$ 1,450). Key events to mark down are listed below: 

VSOP Main Event
Dates: March 18 to 20
Buy in: VN₫ 11,000,000 (~US$ 482)
Guarantee: VN₫ 2,000,000,000 (~US$ 87,600)
Day 1A: March 18
Day 1B: March 19
Day 1C (Turbo): March 19
Final Day: March 20

VSOP Kickoff

Dates: March 14 to 16
Buy in: VN₫ 5,500,000 (~US$ 240)
Guarantee: VN₫ 1,000,000,000 (~US$ 43,800)
Day 1A: March 14
Day 1B: March 15
Day 1C (Turbo): March 15
Final Day: March 16

VSOP Super Bounty Hunter
Date: March 16
Buy in: VN₫ 3,400,000 (~US$ 150)
Guarantee: VN₫ 200,000,000 (~US$ 8,765)
*Note: VN₫ 1M of each buy in goes to the bounty pool

APL Hanoi Dragon Cup
Date: March 17
Buy in: VN₫ 6,600,000 (~US$ 290)
Guarantee: VN₫ 500,000,000 (~US$ 21,900)

APL Bounty Special
Date: March 17
Buy in: VN₫ 4,500,000 (~US$ 200)
Guarantee: VN₫ 300,000,000 (~US$ 13,145)

VSOP Super Stars Challenge
Date: March 18
Buy in: VN₫ 33,000,000 (~US$ 1,450)
Guarantee: VN₫ 500,000,000 (~US$ 21,900)

VSOP Rising Stars
Date: March 20
Buy in: VN₫ 8,800,000 (~US$ 385)
Guarantee: VN₫ 500,000,000 (~US$ 21,900)

Hanoi Spring Championship: March 7 to 13

Just before Vietnam’s borders open, players geolocated in the country can whet their appetite at the Hanoi Spring Championship. The seven day series takes place from March 7 to 13 at the Grand Loyal Poker Club inside the Grand Vista Hotel, located in the Ba Dinh District aka French Quarter. This is the first series brought forth by the club for 2022 and it promises to be both competitive and fun with eight exciting tournaments in store plus VN₫ 2 Billion (~US$ 87,600) in guaranteed prizes. Buy ins range from a very affordable VN₫ 1,100,000 (~US$ 48) to as high as VN₫ 22,000,000 (~US$ 965). This is also a perfect starting point for players who are looking to earn points towards the club’s Player of the Year title where a Chevrolet Spark awaits the champion in December.

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Credit – Grand Loyal Poker Club Facebook page

Opening the series is the HSC Warm Up Event VN₫ 400M guaranteed which runs back to back with the club’s flagship HSC Main Event VN₫ 1.3 Billion (~US$ 57,000) guaranteed. Other key events are the HSC Monster Stack VN₫ 300M guaranteed and the HSC Super High Roller event. Important info for newcomers both local and international, there is no membership fee requirement. All you need is a valid ID. 

HSC Main Event
Dates: March 10 to 13
Buy in: VN₫ 6,600,000 (~US$ 290)
Guarantee: VN₫ 1,300,000 (~US$ 57,000)
Day 1A: March 10
Day 1B: March 11
Day 1C: March 12
Final Day: March 13

HSC Warm Up Event
Dates: March 7 to 10
Buy in: VN₫ 2,200,000 (~US$ 96)
Guarantee: VN₫ 400,000,000 (~US$ 17,500)
Day 1A: March 7
Day 1B: March 8
Day 1C: March 9
Final Day: March 10

HSC Super High Roller
Date: March 12
Buy in: VN₫ 22,000,000 (~US$ 965)

HSC Monster Stack
Date: March 13
Buy in: VN₫ 4,400,000 (~US$ 193)
Guarantee: VN₫ 300,000,000 (~US$ 13,150)

Baazi Poker Tour 2022: March 23 to 28

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Credit: Baazi Poker Tour website

Live action returns to India as PokerBaazi announces Baazi Poker Tour 2022 from March 23 to 28. The long awaited live games will be held at the brand’s hub inside the Majestic Pride ship in Panjim, Goa. A total of five tournaments line the schedule highlighted by the IN₹ 35K buy in Main Event. As quoted in the BPT website, 

“BPT 2022 promises to be a much-welcome return to the felts as India’s biggest poker players return to the Baazi felts for the first time since the onset of the global pandemic. Powered by PokerBaazi Live, the tour promises to envelope a global tournament standard and experience for all the poker players.”

The upcoming event is the third live series hosted by the brand. At the inaugural series in 2019, the IN₹ 50K buy in Main Event pulled in 567 entries for a prize pool of US$ 377,000. In January 2020, with the novel coronavirus already spreading fast, the BPT ran its second series however with a lower Main Event buy in of IN₹ 35K. Its popularity generated an impressive 609 entries for a prize pool of ~US$ 282,500. After a one year break, the BPT heralds the return of live poker festivals. Some of the country’s top pros and defending champions will likely make an appearance. For international players planning to come in for this event, country borders are open however it is best to check for the necessary requirements prior to booking your flight. 

BPT Main Event
Buy in: IN₹ 35K
Day 1A: March 26
Day 1B (turbo): March 26
Day 1C: March 27
Day 1D (turbo): March 27
Day 2: March 28

BPT Kickoff
Dates: March 23 to 24
Buy in: IN₹ 15K

BPT Big Bounty
Dates: March 24 to 25
Buy in: IN₹ 10 + IN₹ 5K

BPT High Roller
Dates: March 25 to 26
Buy in: IN₹ 1 Lakh

Date: March 28
Buy in: IN₹ 15K

PokerStars LIVE Manila Series: March 24 to 27

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Photo Credit – PokerStars LIVE

No brakes for PokerStars LIVE Manila! Having just completed their second event of the year, the brand has just announced PokerStars LIVE Manila Series taking place from March 24 to 27 at their hub in Okada Manila in the Philippines. Full festival details have yet to be revealed however from what we do know, the Main Event features a PH₱ 3,000,000 (~US$ 58,270) guarantee with buy in at PH₱ 6,600 (~US$ 128). Proof of full vaccination is required.

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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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