Daniel Cates reveals Dwan’s USD$20 Million pot

Daniel Cates has shared a fascinating glimpse into the size of pots being won and lost in Macau, while participating in an “ask me anything” session for Jungleman has played in the biggest cash games in Manila, and last summer reported a $5 million loss. It was no surprise to see fans asking him about these games but the moment that really caught fans attention, was when he revealed the size of a pot that Tom Dwan had lost in those games.

– “I saw Tom (Dwan) get set over set on a dry board vs another player for something like USD20m total pot.” 

 Cates added the following:

–  “I guess i played some 25m+ hkd pots in manila, but I don’t remember which ones were the biggest.”

– “I know bigger private games than this one are played in china and possibly also Russia, but I cant talk about them much more than this. I also cannot talk much more about the big games in Manila.”

Tom Dwan

Tom Dwan in Manila

Unsurprising given the stakes being played

During the USD$250K buy in Triton Super High Roller, and the WPT National  Philippines in January, Somuchpoker was on location to get an exclusive interview with Winfred Yu, in which he spoke of the biggest cash games going on in Macau and Manila. He confirmed that a small group of players had been regulars in these games from the outset. Tom Dwan, Phil Ivey, and John Juanda have all been part of the game since the beginning, and Brian Rast has also been involved for a long time. According to Winfred Yu, Phil Ivey spent more time in Asia than the USA over the past 2 years.

With regards to the stakes involved, Yu shared the following: “the Ante Only game stakes are 20K HKD (US$ 2,560) with a minimum buy–in of 10M HKD (US$ 1,2M). The minimum buy-in is dependent upon the request of the VIP. Some players can request for games with a minimum buy-in of up to 20M HKD (US$ 2,4M) to 30M HKD (US$ 3,46M).”

Read the interview: An exclusive insight into the world’s biggest game with Winfred Yu

The first reaction of most people when they hear about a USD$20 million pot being lost will be shock, but when you consider the stakes involved, it’s certainly very plausible for pots of this size to be contested. People who were wondering why Durrrr hasn’t been seen online or in live tournaments for a while, now have part of the answer.


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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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