WSOP Update on Australian and Asian performances at the felt

The 2017 WSOP has completed nearly thirty days of action with gold bracelets constantly being claimed everyday. While Asia and Australia have only picked up a couple combined, their presence is very much felt. For James Obst and Aditya Agarwal, their continued performance has earned them high ranking in the WSOP POY leaderboard while other popular personalities such as David Steicke, Sparrow Cheung, Robert Campbell, Phachara Wongwichit, and Terry Fan have been cashing in on their fair share. There are more events lined up for the next two weeks but for now, here’s an update on all of these players.

James Obst and Aditya Agarwal in Top 20 of WSOP POY rankings

James Obst - Photo WSOP
James Obst – Photo WSOP

After 46 events tallied and another 28 more on the way, the race for the 2017 WSOP Player of the Year title is in full throttle. While the lead spot has undergone many changes, the top 20 has stayed fairly the same with many well-known pros in the roster. Among them is Australia’s James Obst who currently sits in 6th position. Obst has already cashed 6 times in the series, four of them were final table appearances, and a victory at Event #26: US$10,000 Razz Championship. He is 40 points behind the leader Mike Leah and he is one up on Daniel Negreanu on the 7th spot.

More: James Obst talks about winning his first WSOP Bracelet and his goals as player

Another player also raking in the points is India’s Aditya Agarwal who sits in 13th position. Agarwal has already cashed in 8 events – surpassing his personal record of 5 cashes in a single series – and he also attained a final table berth at Event #12: US$1,500 No Limit Hold’em. Agarwal may need more deep runs to reach the leaders but with his standing, he is currently at the helm for Asia.


1 Mike Leah 542.99
2 Raymond Henson 531.22
3 Ryan Hughes 530.13
4 John Racener 527.75
5 John Monnette 511.30
6 James Obst 509.01
7 Daniel Negreanu 488.91
8 Chris Ferguson 484.84
9 Dario Sammartino 482.74
10 Alex Foxen 477.83
11 Pablo Mariz 459.41
12 Ben Yu 447.22
13 Aditya Agarwal 446.58
14 Barry Greenstein 441.92
15 Max Pescatori 438.52

David Steicke takes 3rd at the US$3K HORSE

David Steicke – Photo Jayne Furman Courtesy of WSOP

One of Australia’s leading players, David Steicke, is on the board at the 2017 WSOP. Steicke is a very familiar face in the Asian poker scene and a prominent member of the gaming community in the Asia Pacific region. Last week, Steicke finished 3rd out of 399 entrants at Event #44: US$ H.O.R.S.E.. He earned a hearty payout of US$107,458. This is the first cash for the Aussie player this year with not much visibility in the live tournament circuit since his appearance at the 2016 WSOP. Despite his minimal showing, he still ranks 4th in Australia All Time Money List.

Final table payouts

Finish Player Name Payout
1 Matthew Schreiber $256,226
2 Phillip Hui $158,361
3 David Steicke $107,458
4 Tom Koral $74,382
5 Ryan Himes $52,542
6 Matthew Honig $37,892
7 Ryan Hughes $27,910
8 Brendan Taylor $21,007

Australia’s Robert Campbell with 2 final table appearances

Two years ago, Robert Campbell nearly captured himself one those coveted WSOP gold bracelets after finishing 2nd at one of the H.O.R.S.E events. The following year, the Aussie pro returned and was seen at two final tables, finishing 5th in both events. Then last week, Campbell tore up the WSOP felt once again, landing himself in two final table berths. He finished 7th out of 80 players at Event #34: US$10,000 Limit 2-7 Lowball Triple Draw Championship, and he placed 6th out of 120 players at Event #38: US$10,000 Limit Hold’em Championship. Additionally, he slid in for the cash at a H.O.R.S.E. event early in the month to bring his total earnings to around US$75K.

Australia’s Phachara Wongwichit finishes 4th at the Shootout event

Phachara Wongwichit - Photo Aussie Millions
Phachara Wongwichit – Photo Aussie Millions

Born in Chang Mai, Thailand but now residing in Australia, Phachara Wongwichit had an excellent run at Event #43: US$1,500 No Limit Hold’em Shootout, topping several shootout rounds to finish 4th out of 1,025 players. Wongwichit collected US$84,453 for his first five-digit score this year. Statistically, this is Wongwichit’s largest pick up at any WSOP series. He also cashed at an earlier event but only received a small return.

Final table payouts

Place Player Earnings (USD)
1 Ben Maya $257,764
2 Thomas Boivin $159,273
3 Tim West $115,297
4 Phachara Wongwichit $84,453
5 Alexander Rocha $62,602
6 Steve Foutty $46,969
7 Joe Cook $35,673
8 Paul Michaelis $27,431
9 Jonathan Little $21,360

HKPPA President Sparrow Cheung with 4 cashes

Park Yu Cheung - Photo Drew Amato Courtesy of WSOP
Park Yu Cheung – Photo Drew Amato Courtesy of WSOP

Notorious for consistently cashing in a multitude of events throughout the calendar year, Hong Kong Poker Player Association (HKPPA) President Park Yu Cheung aka “Sparrow” has been having a challenging experience at the ongoing 2017 WSOP and voiced out in his Facebook account of possibly heading back home. Well, things may have turned around for the Hong Kong pro who now has 4 cashes under his belt. His latest was a 43rd finish at Event #39: US$1,000 No Limit Hold’em – Super Turbo Bounty with a whopping 1,868 players in the field. He earned US$3,862. Last year, Sparrow cashed nine times at the series and reached a final table berth at the online event. He still has plenty of time to reach and surpass that marker.

Three cashes for Taiwanese pro Terry Fan

For over ten years, Taiwanese pro Terry Fan has been frequenting the WSOP and for the past two years he has been running deep in multiple events. His furthest run was in 2015 with a 5th place finish at a US$3K No Limit Hold’em event. He pocketed his largest-ever WSOP payout of US$113,452. Last year, Fan found himself at another final table, finishing 6th out of 1,397 entries for a US$38,452 return. This year however, the pro has yet to reach that depth. So far he has three cashes in the bag, his deepest at 66th place, for a combined collection of around US$10K.

Article By Triccia David

More: 2017 WSOP Coverage

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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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