Korea briefs: J88PT returns in April; APL Seoul Finale concludes

Live poker festivals are on a gradual return around the world, however, in Asia, there are places where locals have been shuffling chips on the physical green. One such place is Korea. Since mid last year, poker group J88PT has attracted from 800 up to 1,500 entries to their marquee events. In just a week’s time, the tour returns to host the 2021 Spring Festival J88PT Korea, in Cheongju, South Korea with a total of KR₩ 880,000,000 (~US$ 775,000) in guaranteed prize pools.

Another poker group stirring up the locals was the Asia Poker League. Last year, the brand held the APL Tip Off Series, drawing 1,000 entries to the Main Event. They returned later in the year to host their season finale however due to restrictions brought on by the novel coronavirus, part of the games were postponed. The Main Event eventually completed at the end of February with Ha Seon Park crowned champion. We’ve provided a short review on that event and details on the upcoming J88PT festival.

APL Seoul Finale

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Ha Seon Park

After a three month postponement, the 2020 APL Seoul Finale KR₩ 500,000,000 (~US$ 440,300) finally completed its remaining days on February 27 – 28, 2021 at the Oak Valley Resort Convention Center in Wonju, South Korea. Out of the 1,387 entries, 363 players returned to action for Day 2 with 140 advancing to the final day. Poker pub dealer Ha Seon Park emerged victorious, earning a substantial KR₩ 100,000,000 (~US$ 88,000) for his first ever tournament win.

APL Final Table
APL Final Table

Final Table Payout

Country PRIZE (KRW)
1 Chris Park korea            100,000,000
2 Hyungyu Park korea               65,000,000
3 PYO GI JUNG korea               46,350,000
4 Cheon Sae Bit korea               34,500,000
5 Um Ji Eun korea               26,500,000
6 KIM JEONG HYUN korea               19,000,000
7 DAE WOONG SONG korea               13,000,000
8 HWAN YOUNG KIM korea                 9,750,000
9 LEE SEOK JUN korea                 6,950,000

The next Seoul signature event is scheduled to take place on May 1 -2, 2021. Details have yet to be revealed.

Article will be updated with additional details in the coming hours

2021 Spring Festival J88PT Korea


Coming April 30 to May 2, J88PT returns with the 2021 Spring Festival featuring a combined KR₩ 880,000,000 (~US$ 775,000) in guaranteed prize pools. Games take place at the Grand Plaza Cheongju Hotel in Cheongju, South Korea. The highlighted Main Event makes up the bulk, featuring a KR₩ 500,000,000 (~US$ 440,300) guarantee. Buy in is KR₩ 550,000 (~US$ 485). While the festival doesn’t officially start until late April, starting day heats begin on Sunday, March 21. To give players plenty of chances at the pot, a total of eight entry days are scheduled followed by elimination days which take place from April 30 to May 2.

Day 1A: March 21
Day 1B: March 28
Day 1C: April 4
Day 1D: April 11
Day 1E: April 17
Day 1F: April 18
Day 1G: April 24
Day 1H: April 25

Last year, Song Dae Woong was crowned J88PT Korea Main Event champion after he topped the 800 entry field. Song pocketed KR₩ 100,000,000 (~US$ 82,900) for his largest live score to date. Later in the year, the guaranteed prize pools ballooned as did the attendance. The Main Event drew a whopping 1,500 entries with Je Ho Lee coming out victorious for KR₩ 150,000,000 (~US$ 128,700). Another big winner at that series was Korean star player Soo Jo Kim who shipped the Super High Roller event for KR₩ 63,000,000 (~US$ 55,500).

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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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