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Red Dragon Manila: Ankit Ahuja Takes Down the Red Dragon High Roller (₹85.82 Lakhs)

Ankit Ahuja
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  • Attreyee K. Ganguly January 12, 2020
  • 4 Minutes Read

Team India has dominated the action at the inaugural PokerStars LIVE Red Dragon Manila series. Sahil Agarwal‘s victory in the ₱20K Kickoff set the tone for the series, and now wrapping things up in style was Ankit Ahuja‘s (cover image) who has championed the ₱250,000 Red Dragon High Roller!

One of the last marquee events of the series, the Red Dragon High Roller, pulled in 101 entries, out of which only 33 runners made the cut for Day 2. Among the lot were a group of four Indians, headlined by veteran pro Dhaval Mudgal. While all four Indians finished in the money, it was Ahuja who took home the title, along with a humongous payday of ₱6,112,000 (~₹85.82 Lakhs)!

Talking about his win in the post-event interview, the 33-year-old freelance business and tech consultant said, “This is the first tournament I’ve ever won where I’ve fired more than one bullet – I busted my first pretty early and decided to give it another go. It’s just as well I’ve won really as I missed my flight by making Day 2 yesterday.”

When asked what he plans to do with the money, Ahuja stated, “Plans for the money… put it in the bank and hopefully not punt it off, find something useful to do with it.”

“I’m going to take a break for a bit, I’m going to go home to India, chill with the family. Maybe since I’m going to be in India, I might play one of the Indian series’ next month, but more or less just stay home, maybe play a bit online and that’s about it,” Ahuja concluded.

Mudgal also final tabled the event, finishing seventh for ₱1,094,000 (~₹15.36 Lakhs), while Sahil Agarwal placed 11th for ₱495,000 (~₹6.95 Lakhs) and Kanishka Samant banked ₱460,000 (~₹6.45 Lakhs) for his 13th place finish.


250,000 Red Dragon High Roller – Day 2

Malaysia’s Natalie Teh led the 33 Day 1 survivors to Day 2. With only the top 13 places assured payouts, the race to finish in the money was intense.

2020’s first Platinum Pass winner and Main Event champion Florencio Campomanes was among the players to be eliminated short of the money bubble. Andres Korn bubbled the tournament, finishing in 14th place.

Kanishka Samant was the first player to finish in the money when his were bested by Shigeji Kusakabe;s which bettered to a set on the flop. Samant exited in 13th place for ₱460,000 (~₹6.45 Lakhs).

Kanishka Samant
Kanishka Samant


Sahil Agarwal was the last Indian to be eliminated before the final table was formed. Agarwal’s were no match for Kyungkun Lee’s , ending the former’s run in 11th place for ₱495,000 (~₹6.95 Lakhs).

Sahil Agarwal
Sahil Agarwal


Martin Stausholm bubbled the final table finishing 10th for ₱495,000.


Final Table Chip Counts

1. Ngoc Anh Cao – 959,000

2. Shigeji Kusakabe – 783,000

3. Natalie Teh – 676,000

4. Kyungkun Lee – 609,000

5. Dhaval Mudgal – 465,000

6. Chongxian Yang – 448,000

7. Hwany Lee – 422,000

8. Ankit Ahuja – 351,000

9. Kannapong Thanarattrakul – 326,000

₱250,000 Red Dragon High Roller Final Table
₱250,000 Red Dragon High Roller Final Table


Final Table Recap

The final table lasted for about eight hours, and Ankit Ahuja was in blistering form all through. He started off by eliminating Hwany Lee in ninth place.

Kannapong Thanarattrakul hit the rail in eighth place.

Dhaval Mudgal fell out in seventh place for ₱1,094,000 (~₹15.36 Lakhs). He went head-to-head against Ngoc Anh Cao by pitting his against Cao’s . The board gave Cao top pair, sending Mudgal to the rail.

Dhaval Mudgal
Dhaval Mudgal


Kyungkun Lee (6th), Ngoc Anh Cao (5th), and Chongxian Yang (4th) were eliminated one-after-the-other.

Following Shigeji Kusakabe‘s third-place exit, the heads-up play began between Ankit Ahuja (4,530,000) and the start-of-day 2 chip leader Natalie Teh (520,000). The heads-up lasted for just one hand, and soon enough, Ahuja had bagged his first PokerStars LIVE title.

Natalie Teh
Natalie Teh


On the final hand, Teh’s were outdone by Ahuja’s , with the runout offering no help to the former. Ahuja took home a massive paycheque of ₱6,112,000 (~₹85.82 Lakhs).

Ankit Ahuja
Ankit Ahuja


Final Table Results (PHP)

1. Ankit Ahuja – ₱6,112,000

2. Natalie Teh – ₱4,248,000

3. Shigeji Kusakabe – ₱2,809,000

4. Chongxian Yang – ₱2,199,000

5. Ngoc Anh Cao – ₱1,773,000

6. Kyungkun Lee – ₱1,381,000

7. Dhaval Mudgal – ₱1,094,000

8. Kannapong Thanarattrakul – ₱852,000

9. Hwany Lee – ₱644,950


30,000 DeepStack NLH Single Re-Entry

Running alongside the Red Dragon Manila High Roller was the DeepStack NLH Single Re-Entry that saw 18 entrants retiring for Day 2 from a starting field of 146 entries.

China’s Zeyu Zhang claimed the top honors, which included the Red Dragon trophy and a winner payday of ₱974,740.

Zeyu Zhang
Zeyu Zhang


Final Table Results (PHP)

1. Zeyu Zhang – ₱ 974,740

2. Yuwen Pan – ₱650,000

3. Gabriel Fung – ₱421,000

4. Tung Lin Tsai – ₱325,000

5. Jae Kyung Sim – ₱268,000

6. Sang-Yeon Hwang – ₱220,000

7. Jaycee Lazo – ₱182,000

8. Kun Han Lee – ₱143,000

9. Sin Ren Chen – ₱105,000

Content & Images Courtesy: PokerStars LIVE

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