One of the more intriguing events on the global poker calendar kicks-off today, marking one of the few occasions that a regional tournament has directly opposed the World Series of Poker. The Guangdong Group (Macau) Ltd is hosting the ‘GuangDong Ltd Asia Millions’ (GDAM) tournament at the City of Dreams casino in Macau, starting today.
Guangdong Group (Macau) announced last week that 70 players had accepted the offer to play in this invitation-only HKD $1 Million (USD $130k) buy-GDAM Main Event. The super high roller tournament also allows for two rebuys.
Guangdong Group, a Macau-based junket operator, organises VIP rooms for high stakes gamblers. According to a report in late 2012, the Guangdong Macau group has 15 VIP rooms with presence in City of Dreams as well as Venetian, Sands, Four Seasons, MGM, Wynn, Grand Lisboa, and more.
Players expected to join the field include Bertrand ‘ElkY’ Grospellier, Isaac Haxton, Celina Lin, 2010 WSOP Main Event winner Jonathan Duhamel, Shaun Deeb, Mike McDonald, David Steicke and Max Altergott, who recently won the EPT Grand Final Super High Roller event in Monte Carlo. Aussie Jeff Rossiter also looks likely to join the line-up.
An online broadcast of the event will be available online at www.PokerStars.tv in several languages, with the English commentary provided by EPT host and commentator Joe Stapleton along side PMA’s own ‘voice of poker’ Paul Khoury.
In 2012, the first Macau High Stakes Challenge at StarWorld in Macau attracted a field of 73 players who generated a staggering prizepool of HKD $182,360,000 (or AUD $22,781,600). Stanley Choi won the first prize of HKD $50,149,000 (AUD $6,265,000).
Yesterday, a GDAM Warm-up event was held at the City of Dreams, drawing a field of 45 players. The HKD $250,000 buy-in tournament generated a prizepool of HKD $10,743,750 (USD $1.39m). Hong Kong’s Nick Wong won the Warm-Up event for HKD $4,298,000 (USD $555,000).
Wong carried an overwhelming chip lead heading into heads up play against Isaac Haxton and the battle lasted less than five minutes. In the final hand, Haxton moved all-in with Qd-9d and was quickly called by Wong’s Ah-Kd. The board of 3c-Jc-4s-6c-2h failed to improve either player’s hand and Wong won with his Ace-high.
GDAM Warm-up results
1 Nick Wong (Hong Kong) HKD $4,298,000
2 Isaac "Ike" Haxton (USA) HKD $2,579,000
3 Philipp Gruissem (Germany) HKD $1,719,000
4 Bertrand "ElkY" Grospellier (France) HKD $1,289,000
5 Tore Lukashaugen (Norway) HKD $858,750