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This Week in Poker: February 1 – 7

This Week in Poker: February 1 – 7
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  • Namita Ghosh February 9, 2023
  • 5 Minutes Read

In the PokerGuru feature ‘This Week in Poker,’ we bring you the weekly roundup of the most significant online scores by Indian MTT players and the top stories from both the live and online poker circuit. Here are this week’s top stories!

The high-octane action from January spilled over to February as Spartan Poker’s biggest-ever IOPC 14.0 came to a resounding close on Sunday, even as PokerBaazi’s first-ever PLO Championship took off on Friday.

Topping the weekly charts was none other than the country’s poker stalwart, Aditya Agarwal. The Kolkata-born veteran pro overcame a record 5,173-entry field in the IOPC headliner, ₹5 Crores GTD IOPC #141 The Crown, to win ₹65.93 Lakhs* (from four stacks), storming to #2 in the POY rankings. Agarwal accumulated a jaw-dropping ₹67.53 Lakhs over the week, making him our PokerGuru Star of the Week!”

The IOPC #141 The Crown runner-up finisher, Young Gun Arsh Grover, Abhinav Iyer, Anmol Srivats, Bhanu Prakash KC, Ashish Munot, Gaurav Sood, Sahil Mahboobani, Mahesh Shyamsundar, Eka Vedantham, Sashank Chakravarthy, Mahesh Shyamsundar, Eka Vedantham, and Sashank Chakravarthy were the week`s other top online winners.

Matching the January fervor, poker brands continue to dish out attractive promotions for the tournament and cash game crowd.

PokerMatch India has announced the ₹32 Crores (over €4 Million) GTD PokerMatch Knockout Masters that runs from February 13 – March 14.

IndiaPlays recently unveiled a new and revamped brand identity as a precursor to the launch of its new platform interface, IndiaPlays version 2.0, expected later this year. The platform will host its rake-free ₹25 Lakhs GTD The Dominator Series for micro-stakes grinders from February 16 – March 5.

Gamezy Poker’s February MTT calendar features 140 mid-to-high stakes tournaments, guaranteeing an attractive ₹3.20 Crores in cash prizes.

The APT Hanoi Vietnam VSOP began its 38-event run on February 3, marking the onset of APT’s live events calendar for 2023. Team India has made early inroads, having already bagged a title, posted a runner-up finish, and a host of deep finishes in the festival’s opening week. Headlining the Indian scorecard were the Spartan Poker Team Pros Zarvan Tumboli and Nikita Luther. Tumboli almost won the series-opener Event #1: Kickoff, placing runner-up for VN₫405 Million (3-way deal), with Vietnam’s Phan Minh Duc lifting the trophy and a career-best VN₫520 Million.

Luther placed one better in Event #22: NLH – Super Holdem (3 hole cards) – Hyper Turbo, shipping the event for her maiden APT trophy and the VN₫85.37 Million up top.

Kunal Patni, Amanpreet Singh, poker operator Praveen Dwarkanath, and Alok Birewar were others adding to the Indian scorecard.

In industry developments, the much-awaited 49th GST Council meeting has been postponed to February-end. While all eyes are on how the Council decides to the indirect taxes on the online gaming, casinos, and horseracing sectors, Chairman of the Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs Vivek Johri recently said that all online gaming companies characterized as offering betting services are liable to pay 28% GST on the full value of the bets.

In other updates, the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) banned over 230 illegal betting, gambling, and China-based loan apps, believed to be involved in illegal money laundering activities.

West Bengal’s Chief Minister, Mamata Banerjee, voiced her disapproval on allowing casinos to set shop in West Bengal.

In Tamil Nadu, Rajya Sabha member Anbumani Ramadoss, and the All India Democratic Women’s Association, have strongly advocated for the assent of the Tamil Nadu Prohibition of Online Gambling and Regulation of Online Games Bill 2022.

Poker players planning to make a trip to Las Vegas for the 54th annual World Series of Poker can now draw up their tournament plans. The prestigious festival will run at the Horseshoe Las Vegas and Paris Las Vegas Hotel & Casino on the Las Vegas strip from May 30 to July 18, 2023. The full-blown schedule for the richest poker festival is out, and the upcoming series promises to be the biggest ever, offering 129 gold bracelets, including 95 in live tournaments.

In the other international stories, the three-time WSOP bracelet winner Nick Schulman replaced Gabe Kaplan as the commentator for PokerGO’s High Stakes Poker show.

The 2023 PokerStars Players No-Limit Hold’em Championship wound up this week. Belarusian poker pro Aliaksandr Shylko bested the 1,014-player field to become the second PSPC champion, pocketing the top prize of $3,121,838.

Canada’s Sam Greenwood (Won Event #53: $250,000 Super High Roller for $2,317,100), USA’s Isaac Haxton (Won Event #66: $100,000 7-Handed High Roller for $1,555,360) and Bulgaria’s Ognyan Dimov (Won Event #59: $25,000 NLH PCA High Roller for $990,655) won the last three high rollers at the 2023 PCA.

The eight-event-long PGT Mixed Games series (February 4 – 11) is now well underway at the PokerGO Studio inside the ARIA Resort & Casino. Shaun Deeb (Won Event #1: $10,300 HORSE for $208,800), Eli Elezra (Won Event #3: $10,300 Triple Stud Mix for $155,000), and John Monnette (Won Event #2: $10,300 8-Game) are the first three winners to emerge at the inaugural series.


Online Railbird Report

An action-packed week witnessed the culmination of Spartan Poker’s biggest-ever India Online Poker Championship 14.0. The series showstopper was the ₹5 Crores GTD IOPC #141 The Crown. Day 2 ran on Sunday with 771 qualifying stacks from a starting field of 5,173 entrants. Poker veteran Aditya Agarwal overcame the competition, eventually striking a heads-up deal, to claim the prestigious title for a jaw-dropping ₹65.93 Lakhs* (from four stacks). Agarwal’s weekly haul came in at a hefty ₹67.53 Lakhs, making him the week’s top scorer and our PokerGuru Star of the Week!”

Aditya Agarwal
Aditya Agarwal


His top finishes include:

> 1st in Spartan Poker’s IOPC #141 The Crown for ₹57,73,215


Young Gun Arsh Grover chopped the IOPC #141 The Crown heads-up with Agarwal, taking home a career-best ₹48.93 Lakhs (from three stacks) in second place. Grover’s nearly evened out with Agarwal in weekly scores falling just whiskers behind with ₹65.36 Lakhs in total winnings, storming to the top of the POY rankings.

Arsh Grover
Arsh Grover


His top finishes include:

> 2nd in Spartan Poker’s IOPC #141 The Crown for ₹48,35,055

> 2nd in Spartan Poker’s IOPC #123 Friday High (6-Max) for ₹6,41,004

> 12th in Spartan Poker’s IOPC #136 Sunday Prime for ₹1,01,598

> 1st in PokerStars India’s Master Minds for ₹99,257

> 2nd in Spartan Poker’s IOPC #104 for ₹91,213


Abhinav Iyer posted runner-up finishes in Spartan Poker`s IOPC #115 Mega High Roller and IOPC #29 Sunday High. He finally made the top finish in IOPC #38 Sunday High, accumulating a whopping ₹58.20 Lakhs this past week.

Abhinav Iyer
Abhinav Iyer


His top finishes include:

> 2nd in Spartan Poker’s IOPC #115 Mega High Roller (6-Max) for ₹37,92,700

> 1st in Spartan Poker’s IOPC #138 Sunday High (6-Max) for ₹14,61,460

> 5th in PokerBaazi’s BSS HighRoller for ₹1,41,000

> 100th in Spartan Poker’s IOPC #141 The Crown for ₹1,13,175


The former Young Gun Anmol Srivats captured the biggest buy-in tournament ever at IOPC, the ₹2.10 Lakhs entry buy-in IOPC #115 Mega High Roller, for ₹53.35 Lakhs, adding ₹53.91 Lakhs over the week.

Anmol Srivats
Anmol Srivats


His top finishes include:

> 1st in Spartan Poker’s IOPC #115 Mega High Roller (6-Max) for ₹53,35,000


Bhanu Prakash KC boosted his bankroll by ₹32.79 Lakhs this week and finished #3 in the IOPC 14.0 leaderboard rankings for an additional ₹18 Lakhs (bonus money).

Bhanu Prakash KC
Bhanu Prakash KC


His top finishes include:

> 3rd in Spartan Poker’s IOPC #141 The Crown for ₹24,64,700

> 1st in Spartan Poker’s IOPC #142 for ₹3,02,486

> 3rd in Spartan Poker’s IOPC #108 Wednesday Spotlight for ₹1,64,527

> 4th in Spartan Poker’s IOPC #117 All Rounder for ₹75,460

> 5th in Spartan Poker’s IOPC #119 for ₹42,891

Ashish Munot, Gaurav Sood, Sahil Mahboobani, Mahesh Shyamsundar, Eka Vedantham, Sashank Chakravarthy, Mahesh Shyamsundar, Eka Vedantham, and Sashank Chakravarthy were the week`s other top online scorers.


Notable Winners of the Week

PlayerPrize AmountEventPoker Site
Aditya Agarwal₹57.73 LakhsIOPC #141 The Crown ₹5 Crores GTDSpartan Poker
Anmol Srivats₹53.35 LakhsIOPC #115 Mega High Roller ₹1 Crore GTDSpartan Poker
Md Asraf Ali₹16.52 LakhsIOPC #136 Sunday Prime ₹70 Lakhs GTDSpartan Poker
Abhinav Iyer₹14.61 LakhsIOPC #138 Sunday High (6-Max) ₹40 Lakhs GTDSpartan Poker
Anand Babu Pallikona₹12.53 LakhsThe MoneyMaker ₹1 Crore GTDPokerBaazi
Vishal Ojha₹10.24 LakhsIOPC #122 Friday Prime ₹60 Lakhs GTDSpartan Poker
Mahesh Shyamsundar
₹9 LakhsIOPC #107 Wednesday High (6-Max) ₹30 Lakhs GTDSpartan Poker
Aditya Singh₹8.71 LakhsIOPC #114 Thursday Prime ₹40 Lakhs GTDSpartan Poker
Amol Nimsarkar₹8.70 LakhsIOPC #139 Value Millionaire ₹50 Lakhs GTDSpartan Poker
Sashank Chakravarty₹8.03 LakhsIOPC #106 Wednesday Prime ₹50 Lakhs GTDSpartan Poker
Avinash Kumar₹7.97 LakhsBig Whale ₹30 Lakhs GTDAdda52
Deepak Bothra₹7.57 LakhsPC#3 (PLO-6) HighRoller ₹30 Lakhs GTDPokerBaazi
Aditya Singh₹7.15 LakhsIOPC #123 Friday High (6-Max) ₹40 Lakhs GTDSpartan Poker
Vishnu Adithan
₹5.96 Lakhs(7-Max) BSS Championship ₹35 Lakhs GTDPokerBaazi
Arun Sriram₹5.56 LakhsThe Ballers ₹20 Lakhs GTDAdda52
Harshad Barve₹5.46 LakhsBSS HighRoller ₹20 Lakhs GTDPokerBaazi
Ratul Steves₹5.05 LakhsMega Suits ₹25 Lakhs GTDAdda52
Sashank Chakravarthy₹4.98 LakhsGodfather ₹25 Lakhs GTDAdda52
“Wanabepro299”₹4.86 LakhsRed Spade Series-13 [Sunday Special] [8-Max, PKO] ₹25 Lakhs GTDPokerStars India
Sahil Nair₹4.63 LakhsBSS SuperStack ₹25 Lakhs GTDPokerBaazi
Sahil Mahboobani₹4.48 LakhsThe Summit ₹20 Lakhs GTDPokerBaazi
Nikhil Jain₹4.19 LakhsIOPC #116 Thursday Spotlight ₹20 Lakhs GTDSpartan Poker
Prince Kumar₹4.13 LakhsIOPC #140 Value Mine ₹35 Lakhs GTDSpartan Poker
Aishwary Sharma₹4.04 LakhsMaverick ₹15 Lakhs GTDAdda52
Sanat Mehrotra₹5.05 LakhsThe Weekly HighRoller ₹12 Lakhs GTDPokerBaazi
Vaibhav Sharma₹3.99 LakhsRed Spade Series-01 [The Colosseum] ₹18 Lakhs GTDPokerStars India
Deepankur Gupta₹3.83 LakhsTuesday High Roller (6-Max) ₹15 Lakhs GTDSpartan Poker
“Sagar97706”₹3.73 LakhsIOPC #108 Wednesday Spotlight ₹15 Lakhs GTDSpartan Poker
“Maelwyn”₹3.50 LakhsThe Mint ₹14 Lakhs GTDAdda52
“Durr102”₹3.41 LakhsThe Endeavour ₹20 Lakhs GTDPokerBaazi
Abhishek Goindi₹3.41 LakhsPC#11 (PLO-4) ₹20 Lakhs GTDPokerBaazi
Adithya N G
₹3.16 LakhsRed Spade Series-14 [Sunday Highroller] [6-Max] ₹15 Lakhs GTDPokerStars India
Sachin Raj₹3.09 LakhsThe Pride ₹15 Lakhs GTDPokerBaazi
Bhanu Prakash KC₹3.02 LakhsIOPC #142 ₹15 Lakhs GTDSpartan Poker
Gopal Bajaj₹3.01 LakhsMega Stack ₹15 Lakhs GTDSpartan Poker
Anish Arora
₹2.84 LakhsIOPC #124 Friday Spotlight – Triple Chance ₹20 Lakhs GTDSpartan Poker
Aditya Singh₹2.41 Lakhs(7-Max) SPRINT ₹12 Lakhs GTDPokerBaazi
Rahul Purohit₹2.29 Lakhs(7-Max) SPRINT ₹12 Lakhs GTDPokerBaazi
₹2.24 LakhsPC#15 (PLO-5) ₹12 Lakhs GTDPokerBaazi
Avinash Kumar₹2.13 Lakhs(7-Max) SPRINT ₹12 Lakhs GTDPokerBaazi
Harsh Kumar₹2.12 LakhsIOPC #125 All Rounder ₹11 Lakhs GTDSpartan Poker
Anmol Mehta₹2.09 LakhsRed Spade Series-05 [Uppercut] ₹10 Lakhs GTDPokerStars India
Anindit Pan₹2.06 LakhsPC#9 (PLO-4) ₹10 Lakhs GTDPokerBaazi
Siddharth Rajan₹2 LakhsIron Man ₹8 Lakhs GTDAdda52
Pradip Ghosh₹1.84 Lakhs(7-Max) SPRINT ₹12 Lakhs GTDPokerBaazi
Varun Bansal₹1.72 LakhsIOPC #109 All Rounder 11 Lakhs GTDSpartan Poker
Shravan Suresh₹1.71 LakhsDaily Value Boost ₹10 Lakhs GTDPokerBaazi
Deepak Singh₹1.70 LakhsPC#2 (PLO-5) ₹10 Lakhs GTDPokerBaazi
Utkarsh Vaish₹1.69 LakhsIOPC #134 ₹8 Lakhs GTDSpartan Poker
Amol Nakhwa₹1.64 LakhsIOPC #113 Triple Chance ₹6 Lakhs GTDSpartan Poker
Jimmy Arora₹1.63 LakhsPC#19 (PLO-6) ₹12 Lakhs GTDPokerBaazi
Pravin Jain₹1.57 LakhsIOPC #117 All Rounder ₹11 Lakhs GTDSpartan Poker
“suryasedhu2817”₹1.55 LakhsSunday Showdown ₹10 Lakhs GTDAdda52
“FartinLutherKing”₹1.43 LakhsIOPC #119 ₹7 Lakhs GTDSpartan Poker
Devendra Suthar₹1.40 LakhsDaily Value Boost ₹10 Lakhs GTDPokerBaazi
“Yash9995”₹1.37 LakhsThe Big Show ₹10 Lakhs GTDPokerBaazi
“saurav29”₹1.36 LakhsPC#16 (PLO-6) ₹8 Lakhs GTDPokerBaazi
“Seram”₹1.35 LakhsDaily Value Boost ₹10 Lakhs GTDPokerBaazi
Deepankur Gupta₹1.32 LakhsDaily Value Boost ₹10 Lakhs GTDPokerBaazi
Hemant Meena₹1.23 LakhsBSS Value Boost ₹10 Lakhs GTDPokerBaazi
“CharPatteWala”₹1.20 LakhsPC#14 (PLO-4) ₹7 Lakhs GTD
Vaibhav Bhatia₹1.20 LakhsEliminator [8-Max] – ₹5 Lakhs GTDPokerStars India
Vinay B₹1.17 LakhsThe CashMaker – Triple Chance ₹8 Lakhs GTDSpartan Poker
Rahul Sengar₹1.14 LakhsPC#20 (PLO-4) ₹8 Lakhs GTD
Shrey Baj₹1.10 LakhsIOPC #111 ₹5.50 Lakhs GTDSpartan Poker
“angrydevil”₹1.07 LakhsDaily Value Boost ₹10 Lakhs GTDPokerBaazi
“jaishreeram10”₹1.07 LakhsPC#18 (PLO-4) ₹8 Lakhs GTDPokerBaazi
Devendra Suthar₹1.01 LakhsTurbo Masters [8-Max] ₹5 Lakhs GTDPokerStars India
Arsh Grover₹99KMaster Minds [8-Max] ₹5 Lakhs GTDPokerStars India
₹97K(7-Max) Afternoon Boost ₹5 Lakhs GTDPokerBaazi
Prateek Kukranji₹86KPC#13 (PLO-5) ₹5 Lakhs GTDPokerBaazi
Vivekk Dube
₹81K(7-Max) SPRINT – ₹5 Lakhs GTDPokerBaazi
₹70KIOPC #103 PKO ₹6.50 Lakhs GTDSpartan Poker
“MrJo”₹69K(7-Max) Afternoon Boost ₹5 Lakhs GTDPokerBaazi


PokerMatch India to Host ₹32 Crores GTD PokerMatch Knockout Masters Series (February 13 – March 14)

PokerMatch India has announced the PokerMatch Knockout Masters (PKM), featuring a guaranteed prize pool of ₹32 Crores (over €4 Million), starting on February 13 and running until March 14.

PokerMatch India’s ₹32 Crores GTD PokerMatch Knockout Masters Series (February 13 to March 14)

Read the complete report here.


IndiaPlays Unveils Revamped Brand Identity

Premier gaming platform, IndiaPlays recently unveiled a new and improved brand identity that is a precursor to its version 2.0, a new platform interface set to launch in mid-2023.

IndiaPlays - Logo Change - Cover

Read the complete report here.


IndiaPlays Announces Rake-Free ₹25 Lakhs GTD The Dominator Series (February 16 – March 5)

Just days before the rebranding, IndiaPlays launched an exciting new tournament series for micro-stake grinders, The Dominator Series. Running from February 16 to March 5, the online festival comprises 39 high-value events offering a combined prize pool guarantee of ₹25 Lakhs.

IndiaPlays - TDS - Cover

Read the complete report here.


Gamezy Poker’s February MTTs Guarantee Over ₹3.20 Crores in Cash Prizes

Gamezy Poker will be dishing out an attractive ₹3.20+ Crores in guaranteed prizes through its monthly MTT calendar that includes 140 mid-to-high stakes tournaments.

Compete in Gamezy Poker’s February MTTs & Dig Into ₹3.20+ Crores in Guaranteed Prizes!

Read the complete report here.


2023 APT Hanoi Vietnam VSOP Updates

The Asian Poker Tour (APT) has flagged off its annual calendar of live stops with the 2023 APT Hanoi Vietnam VSOP, up and running at the VSOP Club in Hanoi, Vietnam, from February 3, with 38 tournaments on the schedule.

The Indian contingent has made early inroads. Three of our ‘desi’ pros opened the country’s scorecard in the series-opener Event #1: APT Kickoff. Spartan Poker Team Pro Zarvan Tumboli placed runner-up in the event for VN₫405 Million* (three-way deal).

Zarvan Tumboli
Zarvan Tumboli


Kunal Patni (13th for VN₫46.35 Million) and Amanpreet Singh (15th for VN₫40.69 Million) also posted deep finishes.

Vietnam’s Phan Minh Duc won the APT Kickoff title, lifting his maiden APT trophy and a career-best VN₫520 Million in prize money. Filipino pro David Erquiaga (3rd for VN₫499 Million) also benefitted from the three-way deal.

Phan Minh Duc
Phan Minh Duc


Read the complete report here.

Spartan Poker Team Pro Nikita Luther won India its first APT title of the year in Event #22: NLH – Super Holdem (3-hole cards) – Hyper Turbo. The win landed the former WSOP bracelet winner her maiden APT trophy and a VN₫85.37 Million cash prize.

Nikita Luther
Nikita Luther


Read the complete report here.

Praveen Dwarkanath and Alok Birewar posted ITM finishes in separate side events.


Team India Scores at APT Hanoi Vietnam VSOP

RankPlayerEventPrize Amount (VND)
2ndZarvan TumboliEvent #1: APT KickoffVN₫405 Million
4thAlok BirewarEvent #19: Single Day High RollerVN₫243.780 Million
1stNikita LutherEvent #22: Super Holdem (3 hole cards) – Hyper TurboVN₫85.37 Million
13thKunal Patni - 13thEvent #1: APT KickoffVN₫46.35 Million
15thAmanpreet SinghEvent #1: APT KickoffVN₫40.69 Million
5thPraveen DwarkanathEvent #22: Super Holdem (3 hole cards) – Hyper TurboVN₫24.21 Million
37thPraveen DwarkanathEvent #5: Mystery Bounty HunterVN₫13 Million
29thPraveen DwarkanathEvent #9: Sunday SpecialVN₫12.94 Million


Filipino pro Lester Edoc, Mike Takayama, Vietnam’s Dinh Duc Linh, China’s Yucheng Xiao, Germany’s Martin Finger, Vietnam’s The Vinh Nguyen, China’s Xianling Chen, Russia’s Sergei Kamuz, Lithuania’s Karolis Cekauskas, and Vietnam’s Hoang Hai Nguyen are others to have won side events at the 2023 APT Hanoi Vietnam VSOP.

The star attraction of the series, the VN₫10 Billion GTD Main Event, has run all four starting flights! The Main Event field has touched 640 entries, and the guarantee has been crushed, with ₫15,447,250,000 currently in the prize pool. Late registrations remain open until the start of Day 2. Hence the official numbers will likely be higher.

Twelve Indians are part of the 264-player surviving field returning on Day 2. These include Day 1B chip leader Prashant Bhutoria (247,500), Pranav Bagai (147,000), Praveen Dwarkanath (132,400), Ashish Munot (100,000), WSOP bracelet winner Nikita Luther (95,600), Zarvan Tumboli (91,700), Shardul Parthasarathi (88,400), Alok Birewar (85,900), Jasven Saigal (85,700), Kunal Patni (60,500), Sumit Sapra (51,000), and Ritesh Khatwani (31,300).


With this, we conclude this week’s roundup of the latest news updates and developments from the world of poker. We will return next week with our weekly report. Stay tuned.

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