Lithuania’s Arunas Sapitavicius leads the APT Finale Main Event

The Asian Poker Tour’s is currently hosting its last poker festival for the calendar year, the APT Finale 2015, scheduled to run from December 9-17 at the Waterfront Manila Pavilion Casino Filipino in Manila, Philippines.

The past two days saw a total 169 entries for the P50,000 buy-in Main Event, generating a prize pool of P7.5M (roughly US$160,000). After all the chips were bagged, a combined total of 71 players survived the day one flights with day 1a’s chip leader, Arunas Sapitavicius from Lithuania, amassing the most overall with 103,200 chips.

Chip Leaders

Sapitavicius is a new face to the Asian poker circuit. Most of his Hendon Mob stats this year show him having traveled to several countries around Europe with a stop in the USA for the WSOP. At the APT Finale Main Event, Sapitavicius was the only player who crossed the century chip-mark. One of his biggest hands of the day was when he crippled Korea’s Hyungtaek Jo down to a single 25 chip. Sapitavicius connected with a straight on the river crushing Jo’s top two pairs. Coming in second-rank was day 1b’s chip leader Korea’s Jae Chul Chang with 99,800 chips. Chang is the opposite of Sapitavicius being that he is a very active player in the Asian poker circuit. Chang jumped into the leader’s seat of day 1b when his pocket sevens turned into a full house against a player’s pocket kings.

APT Finale MAin Event Day 1

169 players entered the Main Event (Photo APT)

Other Notable Survivors

Included in the list of day one flight survivors was APT Asian Series Cebu 2015 Main Event champion John Tech (Philippines). Tech re-entered after getting crippled by his ace-king failing to improve on the board against Tan Shi Jie’s pocket kings. His second attempt was much more successful and he ended the day with a big stack of 83,775. USA’s Gerald Casey was also up there in the ranks. He won a series of big pots early in day 1a and maintained the momentum throughout to end the night with 87,525 chips. Another American to join the list of survivors was Dennis Philips who holds quite a decorated page of tallied earnings in Hendon Mob. India’s Kunal Patni, and Japanese poker pro Kosei Ichinose also bagged healthy stacks. Among those who also survived however with average stacks and below were Japan’s Azusa Maeda and Tetsuya Tsuchikawa, Korea’s SJ Kim and Sim Jae Kyung, Canada’s Linh Tran, and Malaysia’s Alex Lee. One additional player who made the cut was Japan’s Iori Yogo. Yogo is gunning for the APT Player of the Year 2015 title. He is currently ranked second in points to triple crown APT POY champion Samad Razavi.


The Main Event also saw its fair share of fallen pros, one of them Germany’s Sebastian Benz who could not go the distance alike he did at the opening event, the Welcome Event 1M Guaranteed. Another was rising young Filipino player Edilberto Gopez despite having attempted at both day one flights. Lastly, APT Poker Weekend Series Manila Main Event champion, Gerard Bringley (Japan), also found the rail before the final buzzer.

The APT Finale 2015 Main Event will resume with day 2 kicking off today at 1pm. Check back with us for a recap on the day’s festivities.

Chip counts: Part 1, Part 2

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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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