By JARROD LEE – for PokerMedia Australia
From the return of one of poker’s biggest names, to a double breakthrough by the new generation, the second APL Poker Tour Victoria series had it all, with 19 trophies given away along with a total of $857,920 in prize money.
Last week’s series at Club Italia marked the debut of the AUD $2500 buy-in Centurion – the largest buy-in tournament on the tour to date – which drew in many big names including 2017 Aussie Millions Main Event Champion Shurane Vijayaram, Shane and Jackson Warne and Ted Hatzakortzian, who made up 10 of the total 69 entries that generated a total prize pool of $165,600.
However, it was David “Superman” Saab who held the chip lead after Day 1 and all the way to a $50,510 payday. This was the veteran’s first major tournament victory since 2008, but whilst Saab flagged his intent on playing more poker in the future, he also declared that it would be more so for enjoyment, rather than just “chasing the almighty dollar”.
APLPT VICTORIA II CENTURION ($2500 buy-in, 69 entries, nine players paid)
Day 2 of the Deep Freeze caught everyone’s attention as Patrick Barba broke through for his first major tournament win and pocketed $11,500, followed by victory in the Jackstar Super High Roller, earning yet another $47,550 and became the first player in APL Poker Tour history to win two or more titles in the same series. APL Ambassador Jackie Glazier also managed a deep run but fell short of the final table in 10th place.
Drawing on past experiences, specifically from memories of his fourth-place finish at the 2018 APL Million Main Event, Barba told PokerMedia Australia he intends to back up the weekend with even more hard work on and off the felt and taking a more conservative approach in building his bankroll.
Rounding off the weekend was the APLPT Victoria II Main Event which brought in 1368 entries from across the state and generated a total prize pool of $205,200.
The final table of the Big Dance ended in a heads-up deal between Calvin Wong and David Xie for $33,000 each, playing a flip for the final $400 and the trophy. An avid lover of strategy and the art of the read, this marked Wong’s first major title since discovering the game at Crown Melbourne eight years ago.
The next leg on the APL Poker Tour is the Castle Hill RSL from May 11-16, followed by the second APLPT Queensland series from June 9-13, with further stops to be announced for South Australia and Tasmania. For more information, including full results from all APL Poker events, log onto www.playapl.com or follow the Australian Poker League on Facebook.