New faces rule the ACOP Events

Yuan Li takes down the Super High Roller Event

Yuan Li was victorious in the 3-day ACOP Super High Roller Event which had a buy-in of HKD$500,000 (US$64,468). He took home a whopping HKD$6,700,000 (US$863,880) and a Spadie trophy he promised to give his girlfriend if he won. The relative newbie outlasted a tournament with 45 entries (33 unique entries with 12 rebuys) and surprisingly felted Justin Bonomo, a veteran and a professional poker player who recently placed 2nd in the WSOP USD$50,000 Poker Player Championship. 

Yun Li and Justin Bonomo
Yun Li and Justin Bonomo

Li whose first cash came in just last year, was among the best of the best in the final table. Apart from Bonomo, he was joined by veteran poker players Paul Newey, Tobias Ziegler, Shunu Zang and Mikita Badziakouski. 

Although a beginner in live tournaments, Li, who admitted he was a high stakes cash game players, said that he wasn’t that much intimidated by the HK$500,000 buy-in and that due to his personality and strength of character he was confident he could win the tournament in the face of far more experienced players.

Tomohito Kato wins ACOP Warm-up event

Tomohito Kato (Photo Kenneth Lim – Courtesy of PokerStars)

The 47-year old businessman Tomohito Kato bested 32 players and took down the HK$25,000 ACOP Warm-up for his first Spadie trophy and HKD$ 1,573,770. Elated, Kato admitted he never thought he could win the event as he played with far more experienced players. This was especially true when it came to the final 4 and he found himself in a 3-way all in with 2 colossal opponents – Team Pokerstars Asia Pros Kosei Ichinose and Vivian Im. After winning this, he had an 8:1 lead in chips which sealed his victory against Macau local Garry Lam.

The Ladies standout at the ACOP

Jay Tan (Photo Kenneth Lim, Courtesy of PokerStars)

The Ladies tournament, which had a buyin of HKD$9,000 (US$1,160), was won by Jay Tan who not only took home HKD$96,009 (US$12,379) but, like Celina Lin, grabbed her 2nd Spadie Trophy. Tan won the same event 3 years prior. This year she reigned supreme over a field of 37 players. Following her in 2nd place is APPT Manila 2016 High Rollers Champion Yan Li.

2M GTD Spadie Event breaks records

The 2M Guaranteed Spadie Event broke records by having a total of 819 players participating in the event and Byung Hyu Na from China stood victorious over them all. Surprised at the enormity of the field and being able to outlast them all, Na admitted he felt lucky winning the event. “Honestly I was shocked at how many people played. I never thought there’d be 800-something people playing.” said Na. “I got pretty lucky.”

When it came to the final 3, however, a deal was struck between Na, British player Robert Schiffbauer and Aussie Jarred Graham to chop the remaining prize pool. In the end, heads-up took a mere 5 minutes with Na, who had the larger stack, being triumphant. He took home  HKD$949,761 (US$122,458).

Article by Gabrielle Barredo

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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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