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The 2019 Asia Pacific Poker Tour (APPT) Manila is now in the books and Team India, continuing its trailblazing trend of spectacular performances, yet again ended the series in style. Young Gun Kanishka Samant came out on top in the last event of the series, i.e., the PHP 200,000 APPT High Roller, claiming his first-ever PokerStars LIVE title, along with a best-live score of ₱6,956,000 (~₹95.05 Lakhs).
The Mumbai-based pro has been on the circuit for a long time now having posted his first live score back in 2011. Since then he has registered 26 live cashes in India and in the Asian circuit. He had five prior cashes at the APPT Manila before this win with his first score coming in 2015’s ₱5,000 NLHE Freezeout where he finished 19th for ₱8,400. His most memorable live victory came last year when he took down the ₹20K NLHE Kickoff at the 2018 WPT India for ₹9.12 Lakhs.
Samant had started his day playing Day 2 of the ₱33,000 Saturday SuperStack which he had entered with a stack of 67,500. After making a quick exit, Samant immediately joined the High Roller and successfully defeated a 175-strong entry field to clinch the title. According to sources, Samant struck a heads-up deal with eventual runner-up Ruihong Tao, which resulted in the former bagging approximately ₹87 Lakhs in earnings. However, according to official reports, Samant got ₱6,956,000 (~₹95.05 Lakhs) for his win, while Tao received ₱4,695,000 for his runner-up finish.
While Samant was working his magic on the APPT High Roller final table, his fellow countryman and another Young Gun Sahil Chuttani was seated at the final table of the PHP 65,000 Main Event. Chuttani’s run came to an end in eighth place, and he posted his first-ever score of ₱1,288,000 (~₹17.51 Lakhs) at the APPT Manila stop.
The other event that also crowned a winner yesterday was the PHP 33,000 Saturday SuperStack Freezeout. The event was championed by Japan’s Kei Takazawa who not only won his maiden live poker title but also posted his first live tournament score of ₱1,574,400 in the event. India’s Mani Singh (30th for ₱65,000 – ₹88,379) and Vinod Megalmani (37th for ₱55,000 – ₹74,782), also picked up scores.
PHP 200,000 APPT High Roller
The two-day long APPT High Roller culminated on August 4 with India’s Kanishka Samant clinching his first-ever PokerStars LIVE title. The event, featuring a buy-in of ₱200,000 (₹2.71 Lakhs), registered 175 entries (118 unique and 57 re-entries), generating ₱31,403,750 (₹4.26 Crores) in the prize pool.
73 players from Day 1 had made it through to Day 2. With late registration open till the end of level 16, 19 more runners had joined the field. Among the new arrivals was Young Gun Samant, who joined the action of the High Roller after busting the ₱33,000 Saturday SuperStack empty-handed.
Samant was accompanied on Day 2 by three other Indian challengers, namely Sahil Agarwal (149,200), Young Gun Abhinav Iyer (58,800) and Aditya Sushant (43,100). Sadly, neither of the other three players were able to cross the money line.
The top 27 places were assured payouts which included notable names like Xuanqi Peck (11th for ₱597,000), Day 1 chip leader Michael Darryanto (13th for ₱518,000), Phachara Wongwichit (20th for ₱377,000), Edgar Eui Woong Kim (23rd for ₱345,000) and William Kang (25th for ₱314,000).
Hao Tian bubbled the nine-handed final table, finishing 10th for ₱597,000.
Final Table Recap
The nine-player final table featured a mix of players from South-Asia, with China dominating in numbers. The first finalist to be eliminated was Malaysia’s Kian Chan who walked out in ninth place.
Chan was followed to the rail by Jiayu Ruan (8th), Tsun Ming Chan (7th), Jeongyu Cho (6th), Hao He (5th) and Ji Woon Kim (4th).
Down to three-handed play, Samant was up against the Chinese duo of Tianliang Guan and Ruihong Tao. Guan fell out in third place, setting up the heads-up between Tao and Samant.
Following an unofficial heads-up deal which saw Samant locking in approximately ₹87 Lakhs, the Indian pro defeated Tao in the final showdown to pocket his career-first PokerStars LIVE title at the APPT.
Final Table Results (PHP)
1. Kanishka Samant – ₱6,956,000*
2. Ruihong Tao – ₱4,695,000*
3. Tianliang Guan – ₱3,231,000
4. Ji Woon Kim – ₱2,635,000
5. Hao He – ₱2,101,000
6. Jeongyu Cho – ₱1,614,000
7. Tsun Ming Chan – ₱1,175,000
8. Jiayu Ruan – ₱851,000
9. Kian Chan – ₱703,750
*According to outside sources, a heads-up deal was made between Kanishka Samant and Ruihong Tao. However, the scores given here represent the official results as released by APPT.
PHP 33,000 Saturday SuperStack Freezeout
Japanese player Kei Takazawa triumphed over a 347-strong entry field in the ₱33,000 Saturday SuperStack to bag his first-ever PokerStars Live title, banking ₱1,574,400 in first-place prize money, which also happens to be his career-first live tournament score!
58 runners had advanced to Day 2 and among them were a group of three Indian contenders – Vinod Megalmani (107,500), Mani Singh (82,500), and Kanishka Samant (67,500). Samant was eliminated early on, falling short of the money line. He more than made it for it by jumping into the High Roller, eventually claiming the title and trophy in that event. Meanwhile, Singh and Megalmani managed to pick up scores, with Singh finishing 30th for ₱65,000 (~₹88,379) and Megalmani placing 37th for ₱55,000 (~₹74,782).
Other notables who also finished in the money included Day 1 chip leader Paolo Boccaletti (16th for ₱105,000), Stephen Nathan (20th for ₱85,000), Indian-origin players Vijaykumar Ramasamy (22nd for ₱75,000) and Sandeep Mirchandani (26th for ₱70,000), and Anna Haotanto (32nd for ₱65,000).
Takazawa agreed to a three-way deal with John Costiniano and Vamerdino Magsakay, following which Takazawa locked in ₱1,574,400 for his first-place finish, while Costiniano and Magsakay collected ₱1,574,300 each finishing second and third respectively.
Final Table Results (PHP)
1. Kei Takazawa – ₱1,574,400*
2. John Costiniano – ₱1,574,300*
3. Vamerdino Magsakay – ₱1,574,300*
4. Liang Song – ₱725,000
5. Kim Enriquez – ₱525,000
6. Alexis Wenceslao Lim – ₱425,000
7. Da Quan – ₱335,000
8. Sandro Bruni – ₱285,000
9. Sean Tan – ₱233,723
*Denotes three-way deal
Content & Images Courtesy: Asia Pacific Poker Tour
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