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The 2018 Asian Poker Tour (APT) Finale Philippines is the culminating stop for the tour as it wraps up its roster of events for the year. The series has now reached a crescendo with the PHP 10 Million Main Event crowning a winner in Japan`s Mikiya Kudo (cover image). Kudo defeated Lim Yohwan in a lengthy heads-up finale to claim the trophy and the top prize of PHP 2,844,500 (₹37.95 Lakh).
This is Kudo’s biggest live tournament score till date. He had posted just one live score this year before this win, and that too at the 2018 APT Philippines Manila ₱5,500 NLHE Deep Stack Hyper Turbo 1 where he finished 10th for ₱8,300. Kudo came into the final day chip leading the eight-handed final table with a stack of 2,070,000. He kept the momentum all the way through till the heads-up where he entered with a chip deficit but overtook Yohwan to win all the chips in play in just 24 hands.
Representing Team India at the event were the 2017 World Series of Poker (WSOP) bracelet winner Aditya Sushant and Dilip Menon, and both of them were among the 149 hopefuls to make the cut for Day 2. However, that is how far they would go, as both Sushant and Menon busted short of the money line.
The event registered an impressive 307 entries that was more than enough to surpass the PHP 10 Million guarantee put up the tournament organizers with the final prize pool kitty touching PHP 14,889,500.
Only 56 runners managed to advance to Day 3 and the money was reached after the unexpected departure of Pamela Ang Chai Li in a rather brutal beat. Castillo’s king-queen cracked Li`s pocket aces with the former first flopping a pair of Kings that improved to Quads with runner-runner Kings on the turn and the river. With Li’s elimination, the remaining 52 players were all guaranteed to take home at least PHP 78,200.
Notables who featured on the payout list included the likes of Takao Shimizu (10th for PHP 274,500), Wendell Garcia (11th for PHP 234,600), Cheli Lin (12th for PHP 234,600), Kah Boon Teh (15th for PHP 200,600), Sam Welbourne (17th for PHP 171,400), Alfie Poetra (19th for PHP 146,500), Bobby Zhang (24th for PHP 125,200), Linh Tran (26th for 125,200) and Jack Wu (39th for PHP 91,500).
Kazuki Hurata (9th for PHP 321,200) bubbled the final table with the eight finalists bagging up chips following his elimination.
1.Mikiya Kudo – 2,070,000
2. Lim Yohwan – 1,525,000
3. Koji Asaka – 1,230,000
4. Kosei Ichinose – 1,155,000
5. Victor Chong – 675,000
6. Le Ngoc Khanh – 520,000
7. Jiego Erquiaga – 300,000
8. Stephen Nathan – 200,000
Jiergo Erguiaga made an early exit from the eight-handed final table when he ran his into Kudo’s . It didn’t seem so when the hand began since Erquiaga found an ace on the flop and kept his lead on the turn . Kudo had the poker gods on his side with the landing on the river that gave Kudo two pairs, enough to boot Erquiaga out in eighth place.
Stephen Nathan then suffered the fatal blow by Lim Yohwan in a hand where the latter raised to 85K and Nathan shoved for 300K. Yohwan said, “I’m behind but I have 30%. I have to call.” Both players tabled their cards. Nathan tabled versus Yohwan’s . Yohwan was trailing and the flop brought a pair for Nathan but the turn and the river saw Yohwan completing his straight, eliminating Nathan in seventh place.
The remaining six players went on a short break and when the play resumed, Kosei Ichinose, who had eliminated the first Filipino to win a WSOP bracelet winner i.e. Mike Takayama to the rail on Day 2, became the next player to hit the rails. Victor Chong moved all-in with and Ichinose called from the big blind holding . The board ran and Chong scooped the pot with his full house, sending Ichinose packing in sixth place.
Yohwan found a big double up through Victor Chong that got the latter short stacked and it was only a matter of time before the Malaysian pro was ousted from the final table. Action saw Koji Asaka leading out with a bet of 125K, Yohwan 3-bet all in for 1.080M and Chong moved all in for 1.090M. Asaka folded and Yohwan tabled vs. Chong’s . The board ran and Yohwan collected the monster pot to see his stack climbing up to over 2.2 Million while down to 10K, Chong was eliminated in the next hand and collected a fifth place payout.
The play then saw Le Ngoc Khanh scooping a sizeable pot in what turned out to be one of the longest hands of the event that played out over 10 minutes. Khanh was unable to hold on these chips for long and handed them over to Kudo. A few hands later, Khanh moved all-in with his short stack from the big blind after being called off by Yohwan in the small blind. Khanh had two live cards with against Yohwan’s but failed to connect and exited in fourth place.
Koji Asaka was eliminated in third place after moving all-in from the small blind with 1.090M and was called off by big blind Kudo. Asaka tabled against Kudo’s . The board ran and Asaka lost his tournament life in third place to Kudo’s full house.
Lim Yohwan and Kudo began the heads-up play with the former in the lead holding 4,380,000 in chips against Kudo’s 3,295,000, however, in an intense and somewhat dramatic turnaround it was Kudo who got the better of Yohwan and won the coveted trophy!
The chips kept exchanging hands before Kudo took down a big pot to come on top. He continued adding to his stack and after 24 hands of heads-up play, the final hand of the Main Event was dealt. It was Kudo`s against Yohwan’s on the runout. Kudo’s flopped straight won him the title, while Yohwan finished runner-up.
1.Mikiya Kudo – PHP 2,844,200
2. Lim Yohwan – PHP 1,896,100
3. Koji Asaka -PHP 1,323,800
4. Le Ngoc Khanh- PHP 963,600
5. Victor Chong – PHP 728,200
6. Kosei Ichinose – PHP 569,000
7. Stephen Nathan – PHP 458,000
8. Jiergo Erguiaga- PHP379,200
Content & Images courtesy – www.theasianpokertour.com.
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