Confidence boost: Will Okeby wins APL Ville 600 Main Event on debut

Queensland’s Will Okeby has emerged victorious in his maiden APL Ville 600 Main Event appearance, capturing two major mid-tier trophies and more than $46,000 in total prize money.

After having won the $120 buy-in NLH 6-Max on Friday night for a top prize of $3,040, Okeby kept the heater going and went all the way through a marathon final table, chopping with Johan Verkjuil heads-up for $43,470 each before capturing his second trophy for the series.

The 44-year-old chef, who recently moved to the town of Sarina from the Sunshine Coast, was absolutely stoked with the result, telling PokerMedia Australia that the first win had renewed confidence in his ability, bolstered by a huge rush in the early stages of Day 2.

“I was pretty calm coming back [on Sunday],” Okeby said. “At the start of the day, I was feeling good … but once I started accumulating chips, I knew it would be hard to stop.”

APL VILLE 600 MAIN EVENT – FINAL TABLE RESULTS ($600 buy-in, 504 entries, 63 players paid)*

1stWill OkebyQueensland$43,470*
2ndJohan VerkjuilQueensland$43,470*
3rdCorey Van JaarsveldtQueensland$20,670
4thZac HarrisVictoria$15,570
5thAlistair GunthorpeQueensland$10,700
6thTroy HulmQueensland$8,510
7thMitch SetterQueensland$6,930
8thSean Clinton-MorganQueensland$5,840
9thKenny WangNew South Wales$4,865
*Denotes heads-up deal; full results available at

Hosted at The Ville-Resort Casino since 2017, the biggest poker series in all of Far North Queensland brought in players from all corners of the country, with the $600 Ville 600 Main Event bringing in a total of 504 entries – the most in the tournament’s history to date.

Inaugural Ville 600 Main Event Champion Martin Boersma also won two titles, taking down the $120 buy-in Terminator after winning the $1,000 buy-in JDub Poker Big Bucks, but not before Ryan Paton – son-in-law of the late Allan McLauchlan – won the Opening Event; Paton and his family were given a specially commissioned trophy in dedication to the tournament’s founder.

Hussein Hassan then completed a unique trio of his own, with the 2019 APL Million Main Event Champion adding the Jackstar title to his name after winning The Centurion at the APLPT Queensland series in June, while Kiale Matthews made history as the first-ever Mystery Bounty champion in APL history.

Matthews’ win in that tournament was the catalyst for a string of deep runs throughout the remainder of the series, overtaking Townsville Auto Group 3000 winner Josh Foster to win the Absolutely Dental Player of the Series; Jade Mitchell also made history in becoming the first female player to win the Aussie mid-tier Triple Crown, capturing her first APL major trophy to complete the set after winning Al’s Accumulator.

The APL is now back on the road for the upcoming APLPT Albury series at the Commercial Club, which starts on Thursday; for more information, including updates, images, results and feature table replays, log onto or follow the Australian Poker League Facebook page.

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