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APT Vietnam 2018: Series Come to a Thundering Close With Tetsuya Tsuchikawa Winning the Main Event, Tetsuya Enoki Crowned APT Player of the Series

Tetsuya Tsuchikawa
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  • PG News October 12, 2018
  • 6 Mins Read

Vietnam has been one of the most favored destinations for Indians and this year proved no different. While it was the World Poker Tour (WPT) Vietnam that saw blistering runs from Team India including two title wins, with MadOverPoker proZarvan Tumboli winning theHo Chi Minh Cup and Dhaval Mudgal’s win in the Main Event, the Indian challengers kept the railbirds glued to the action these past few weeks.

It was Sajal Gupta’s (4th for VND 137,390,000 -₹4.37 Lakhs) impressive performance in the Monster Stack event and World Series of Poker (WSOP) bracelet winner Nikita Luther’s (11th for VND 135,160,000 – ₹4.32 Lakhs) phenomenal run through the challenging field in the Main Event that headlined the 10 Indian scores posted at the series.

The week-long series that kicked off on October 5 and comprised of 11 featured events in addition to a special CoinPoker Super High Rollers, came to a thundering close with the Main Event reaching its finale, as Japanese pro Tetsuya Tsuchikawa won his first-ever APT championship title in the Main Event along with a glittering payday of VND 1,638,200,000.

Meanwhile, Tetsuya Enoki won his second title at the NLHE 1 event, becoming the only player to win two titles at the series. With this distinction, he was awarded the APT Player of the Series trophy. The runner-up trophy for the APT Player of the Series was lifted by Go Mori, while Tsuchikawa was awarded the second runner-up trophy.

Tetsuya Enoki
Tetsuya Enoki

Several side events also crowned winners on the closing day at APT Vietnam, including Tim Frazin in Short Deck NLHE Single Day – Shot Clock Event, Dylan Wilkerson in CoinPoker High Rollers Event, Philemon Ip in NLHE 2 event, Hisashi Ogi in Deep Stack Hyper Turbo 2 and Andreas Rauh at the Welovesport.com Deep Stack Hyper Turbo event.

Indian Participation

For the Indians the action began right at the beginning when the CoinPoker Super High Rollers event kicked off alongside the Monster Stack. Both Sahil Agarwal and Raghav Bansal reached the final table of the CoinPoker Super High Rollers but missed the money line by a whisker.

In the Monster Stack event, Sajal Gupta (4th for VND 137,390,000 (₹4,37,630)and Amanpreet Singh (6th for VND 81,160,000 ~₹2,58,520) pulled in scores.

A huge group of Indians entered the Main Event through the three starting flights and leading from the front was World Series of Poker (WSOP) bracelet winner Nikita Luther, who kept the chip lead of Day 1B flight, and went on to remain the overall chip leader right till Day 3 where she eventually made an 11th place finish. Close to her heels was Vivek Rughani (19th for VND 98,730,000 – ₹3.16 Lakhs) who had pulled up his game to emerge dominantly strong on Day 3. All the four other Indians who had advanced to Day 3 namely, Kanisha Samant, Shashank Jain, Zarvan Tumboli and Sajal Gupta also crossed the money line.

We also saw a deep runs posted by Alok Birewar (13th for VND 13,980,000~ ₹44,227)in NLHE 1 event and Dhaval Mudgal’s (8th for VND 13,760,000 ~ ₹43,531) scores in Welovesport.com Deep Stack Hyper Turbo event.

Indian Scores At 2018 APT Vietnam

Indian Scores At 2018 APT Vietnam
Indian Scores At 2018 APT Vietnam

VND 6 Billion GTD Main Event

Starting on October 6, the VND 6 Billion extravaganza, i.e. the Main Event, culminated on October 11 and ultimately crowned a winner in Japan’s Tetsuya Tsuchikawa. He battled against the likes of Benjamin Gonzva, Teoh Ming Hong and Mei San Ang on the final table and bested Nang Quang Nguyen in heads-up play to lay claim to the grand prize of VND 1,638,200,000.

Tsuchikawa (4,930,000) had started the final table placed second in chips and orchestrated the eliminations of Ang and Gonzvato to further build up his stack and take over the chip lead. He eventually defeated Nguyen in the heads-up finale to win his maiden APT title.

Talking about his victory, Tsuchikawa said in the post-event interview, “Just happy but also the feeling is “FINALLY.”At last, at last! For six years. I came runner-up three times but never won until now. I always just win side events so my friends call me ‘Mr. Side Event’. I’ve won at other poker events, at WPT and PokerStars twice but from APT, I’d never win.”

The Main Event saw a huge Indian turnout and a total of 24 Indians managed to reach Day 2 from the three starting flights, with Nikita Luther (VND 135,160,000 ~ ₹4.32 Lakhs) leading the way. Luther’s journey in the Main Event was remarkable, as she entered through the Day 1B flight and bagged the chip lead with a stack of 422,300, a position she maintained after all the three starting flights were over, holding the overall chip lead. Day 2 saw Luther remain on the top, with 954,000, the largest stack entering Day 3. Among the other big stacks was Vivek Rughani (VND 98,730,000 ~₹3.16 Lakhs), who had climbed up comfortably enough to enter Day 3 with the third largest stack, of 737,000.

Nikita Luther
Nikita Luther

While Luther’s run ended with an 11th place finish, Rughani was eliminated in 19th place. Kanishka Samant (32nd for VND 61,650,000~₹1.97 Lakhs), Sajal Gupta (45th for VND 52,690,000~₹1.68 Lakhs), Shashank Jain (79th for VND 32,900,000 ~₹1.05 Lakhs), Zarvan Tumboli (71st for VND 32,900,000 ~₹1.05 Lakhs) were the other Indian challengers who posted scores in the Main Event.

Vivek Rughani
Vivek Rughani

Minh Le was the first casualty on the final table and his elimination in eighth place halted play on Day 3, with the seven remaining finalists bagging up chips one last time.

Minh Le
Minh Le

Seven-Handed Chip Counts

1. Quang Nguyen – 5,520,000

2. Tetsuya Tsuchikawa – 4,930,000

3. Benjamin Gonzva – 4,220,000

4. Le Long Stephane – 3,710,000

5. Teoh Ming Nguyen – 3,120,000

6. Vu Manh Phong- 1,755,000

7. Mei San Ang – 1,600,000

Final Day Recap

Action on the final table saw its first elimination when Vu Manh Phong clashed with Mei San Ang. Phone was one of the short stacks coming into the final day and before long he ran his card 1card 1 into Ang’s card 1card 3. The board ran card 3card 3card 3card 3card 3 bringing Ang a winning flush while Phong was sent packing to the rail in seventh place.

About thirty minutes later, Le Long Stephane was bounced out by Tsuchikawa after Stephane moved all in with card 3card 3. Tsuchikawa was leading with his card 3card 3 and the board of card 2card 3card 3card 3card 3 bricked for Stephane, who headed out in sixth place.

Tsuchikawa then scored another knockout when Mei San Ang moved all his chips in the middle with card 3card 3 against Tsuchikawa’s card 2card 3. Tushikawa flopped a winning pair of aces on the card 3card 1card 1card 2card 1 rundown and Ang’s tournament run ended in fifth place.

Next up it was Teoh Ming Hong who came up against the day’s chip leader Quang Nguyen whose card 2card 3 were dominated by the latter`s card 3card 1. Nguyen’s king kicker kept him in the lead through the board that ran card 1card 1card 2card 3card 3 and Hong was eliminated in fourth place.

Benjamin Gonzva then moved all in with card 3card 2 only to run into Tsuchikawa’a card 3card 3. Gonzva needed help, but the card 3card 3card 3 flop blanked out for him and though the card 1 turn gave him a ray of hope, the card 2 on the river sealed his fate and Gonzva was busted in third place.

The heads-up match between Quang Nguyen and Tsuchikawa lasted nearly two hours before the final hand was played. Tsuchikawa raised to 650,000 and Nguyen 3-bet to 1.6 Million. On the flop card 2card 3card 3, Quang bet another 1.6 Million prompting Tsuchikawa to snap call. On the card 3 turn Quang slid in a bet of 1.9 Million and Tsuchikawa moved all in, to which Quang made the call. Tsuchikawa tabled card 3card 1 for the top set, while Quang tabled card 2card 3. The card 3 on the river was a mere formality as Quang was eliminated in second place as Tsuchikawa picked up the title and the winner’s trophy.

Tetsuya Tsuchikawa
Tetsuya Tsuchikawa

Final Table Results (VND)

1. Tetsuya Tsuchikawa – VND 1,638,110,000

2. Nang Quang Nguyen – VND 1,092,130,000

3. Benjamin Gonzva – VND 762,500,000

4. Teoh Ming Hong – VND 555,030,000

5. Mei San Ang – VND 419,470,000

6. Le Long Stephane – VND 327,860,000

7. Vu Manh Phong – VND 264,060,000

8. Minh Le – VND 218,430,000

Welovesport.com Deep Stack Hyper Turbo

The sixth event at 2018 APT Vietnam was the Welovesport.com sponsored Deep Stack Hyper Turbo that attracted a total of 78 entries.

It was German pro Andreas Rauh who won the top prize of VND 103,170,000. Andrea defeated Tony Ngeow Hung Hai heads-up to lift the trophy.

Hai had to settle for a payout of VND 48,020,000. This was the second time during the series that he missed out on winning the title. At the Monster Stack opening event, Hai was denied the title by Vi Khoa and had to settle in for a runner-up finish.

India’s Dhaval Mudgal featured prominently in the event. Mudgal was among the frontrunners was well on his way to the final table but fell short, to end his run in eighth place. Mudgal banked a payout of VND 13,760,000 (₹44,009).

The top 13 spots crossed the money line and the final table was bubbled by Alexander Volodin (10th for VND 9,960,000).

 Andreas Rauh
Andreas Rauh

Final Table Results (VND)

1. Andreas Rauh – VND 103,170,000

2. Tony Ngeow Chung Fai – VND 68,780,000

3. Tran Hung Hai – VND 48,020,000

4. Lam Duc Canh – VND 34,960,000

5. Go Mori – VND 26,420,000

6. Dhanesh Chainani – VND 20,650,000

7. Truong Mong Hoang – VND 16,630,000

NLHE 1 Event

Fresh off the felts with his sterling victory at the Single Day Event 2, Tetsuya Enoki went on to capture the trophy at the NLHE 1 event at the 2018 APT Vietnam. Enoki overcame a field of 121 runners to walk away with the top prize of VND 198,300,000.

It wasn’t easy though, for Enoki for he had to confront Vietnam’s home pro Tran Duc Nghia heads-up. However, Enoki didn’t let go of the chip lead he commanded while entering the heads-up duel and claimed victory. The title win makes Enoki the only player to have captured two titles at the series.

The tournament entailed a buy-in of VND 7,700,000 and the entry field swelled the prize pool to VND 821,590,000. The bubble broke after Richard Mari eliminated an opponent with card 1card 3 over opponent’s card 2card 2 on a board of card 3card 3card 2card 2card 1. The remaining 21 finalists were in the money.

Prominent players who earned payouts include, Hisashi Ogi (4th), Kazuma Inotsume (5th), Piet Pape (6th), Yohn Paredes (7th), Christopher Mateo (7th), and En Ching Wu (17th).

Deep Stack Hyper Turbo 2

The Deep Stack Hyper Turbo 2 event featured a buy-in of VND 5,500,000 and drew 30 runners to the field. Sailing through the fast paced event was Hisashi Ogi who defeated Thanisorn Saelor in the heads-up to claim the title and the APT trophy.

Hishashi Ogi
Hishashi Ogi

For Saelor who recently scored a runner-up finish at the NLH Event, victory was excruciatingly close since the final hand saw him hold pocket jacks against Ogi’s ace-six offsuit. However, the tables turned for him, when Ogi improved to two pair on the board.


The NLHE 2 event culminated its two day run and cruising the tough fieldof 83 runners was Hong Kong’s Philemon Ip who took the event for a payday of VND 172,350,000.

A prize pool of VND 644,080,000 was generated and Ip entered the heads-up against He Xiayin with a dominating lead. The duo engaged over several hands before the finale was reached, where Xiayin moved all in with card 3card 3 and Ip made the call with card 2card 1. The board ran card 3card 3card 3card 3card 2, bringing victory for Ip while Xiayin had to settle for the runner-up finish.

The top 14 spots were paid and notables who earned payouts include, Michael Shell (10th for VND 16,640,000), Bui Huu Tai (11th for VND 14,220,000) and Ruth Graham (12th for VND 14,220,000).

Final Table Results (VND)

1. Philemon Ip – VND 172,350,000

2. He Xiayin – VND 114,900,000

3. Nguyen Huu Huan – VND 80,220,000

4. Le Ngoc Khanh – VND 58,390,000

5. Samad Razavi – VND 44,130,000

6. Nguyen Duy Anh – VND 34,490,000

7. Tran Huy Hoang – VND 27,780,000

8 Angeline Cho – VND 22,980,000

9.Tim Frazin – VND 19,460,000

CoinPoker High Rollers Event

The CoinPoker High Rollers event was held over the course of two days and attracted a field of 104 entries, creating a prize pool of VND 5,044,000,000.

With only the top 18 spots assured layouts, 38 players made the cut for Day 2. Down to the last three players, ShyhChyn Lim fell out in third place. Following Kim’s elimination, Dylan Wilkerson and Christopher Mateo struck a deal. With more chips at Wilkerson’s side of the table, he was awarded the win.

Dylan Wilkerson
Dylan Wilkerson

Final Table Results (VND)

1. Dylan Wilkerson – VND 1,107,750,000*

2. Christopher Mateo – VND 1,000,000*

3. ShyhChyn Lim – VND 588,630,000

4. En Ching Wu – VND 428,470,000

5. Kenny Tuan – VND 323,820,000

6. Gao Wenling – VND 253,100,000

7. Richard Marquez – VND 203,850,000

8. Ng Pham The Quan – VND 168,620,000

9. Linh Tran – VND 142,830,000

*denotes heads-up deal

Short Deck NLHE Single Day –Shot Clock Event

Making its debut on the final day of the series, Short Deck Poker found encouraging participation in 53 runners. Although the first few levels were played under a cloud of confusion, but once players got comfortable with the concept of the game, the competition intensified.

To make the event even more interesting, a Shot Clock was added to the final table. Following several quick eliminations, the heads up play between Tim Frazin and Duy Ho commenced.

On the final hand of the event, Ho’s pocket sixes ran into Frazin’s card 2card 1. With the board fanning out card 2card 3card 3card 2card 1, Frazin flopped a pair of kings to take home the trophy and top prize of VND 97,920,000.

Final Table Results (VND)

1. Tim Frazin – VND 97,920,000

2. Duy Ho – VND 81,950,000

3. Nguyen Vu Dai Duong – VND 50,230,000

4. Erik Billgren – VND 36,560,000

5. Tao Tien Manh – VND 27,630,000

6. Wu Kui Song – VND 21,600,000

7. Goto Daisuke – VND 17,400,000

8. Kyle Lim – VND 14,390,000

9. Michele Limongi – VND 12,190,000

Related Articles:

1. APT Vietnam 2018: Nikita Luther’s 11th Place Finish Headlines 6 Indian Scores on Day 3 of the Main Event, Quang Nguyen Leads Seven Finalists

2. APT Vietnam 2018: India`s Nikita Luther & Vivek Rughani Lead 85 Runners on Day 3 of Main Event

3. APT Vietnam 2018: Nikita Luther Chip Leads 194 Survivors on Day 2 of Main Event, Nishant Sharma Headlines 13 Indians Who Made it Through Day 1C

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