The Australian Poker League (APL) has officially broken ground for the mid-tier market in the Garden State, hosting the first live series of its kind in Victoria and the first major live poker event in Melbourne since the 2020 Aussie Millions Poker Championship.
The four-day APL Poker Tour Victoria festival at Club Italia in St Albans, which garnered a series total prize pool in excess of $750,000, attracted a slew of former Crown Melbourne regulars including 2017 Aussie Millions Main Event Champion Shurane Vijayaram, Peter Aristidou, Dennis Huntly and Australian Poker Hall of Famer Mel Judah.
The APLPT Victoria series also marked the welcome return of David Saab; prior to his 10-year hiatus, Saab was one of the most prominent names on the Australian circuit, winning the $5,200 Aussie Millions Heads-Up Championship in 2007 before running deep in the WSOP Main Event the following year, finishing in 46th place for US$135,100.
Two members of the Crown alma mater – Scott Wilson and Chris Andreadis – both chalked up big wins at APLPT Victoria in the $450 High Roller and $1,250 Jackstar Super High Roller respectively, but not to be outdone, the APL faithful raked in some impressive results too. They included two players from the Bendigo region: Carsten Playback took down the $15K Guaranteed NLH Event while Kristy Nowell claimed the $50 buy-in Freezeout Finisher.
Of course, all eyes were on the APLPT Victoria Main Event, which attracted a total of 2,162 entries – the second-highest poker tournament field at any price point in Australian history – and generated a total prize pool of $324,300.
Having bulldozed his way to the overall lead in the late stages of Day 2, Fahri Han held more than a third of the total chips in play at the beginning of the final table and could not be caught, with runner-up Tim Sheehan yielding to Han in a deal to chop up the trophy and prize money after Brandon Edwards was eliminated in third.
APLPT VICTORIA MAIN EVENT
($150 buy-in, 2162 entries, 200 players paid)
*Denotes heads-up deal.
The second edition of APLPT Victoria will he held Club Italia from 28 April to 2 May before heading north to Castle Hill RSL for the first APLPT Sydney series from 11 to 16 May. For more information including full schedules, visit playapl.com.