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Monday, August 27, 2007 

The APPT Crowns It's First Champion

My apologies for the abrupt stop with the updates from the frontlines of the APPT. The Wireless internet connection was so bad that we were disconnected about 90% of the time. I decided to leave at around midnight and just update from the comfort of my own home.

I left with 4 players left in the game, and 3 hours later we have a champion. After surviving three all-in hands right before the final table bubble on day two, American student and online qualifier Brett Parise outlasted a tough final table field and probably played the best poker of his life to win over veteran player Ira Blumenthal and take down the $180,000 prize and the championship trophy.

Final Table from MY Point of View

He has 180,000 reasons to celebrate!

All i can say is, what an awesome event. I'm just proud to have been a part of this thing, even if it was just a small role blogging about the tournament. I met a lot of great people, and everybody was just super friendly and helpful and just great. I had the pleasure of working with other bloggers from all over Asia, and i believe i also made 2 or 3 friends out of it too. This whole event did so much for Poker in our region in a span of 3 days, probably accelerating it's growth by several years.

Blogger Brigade

Professional Mahjong Player and Japanese Blogger Jenn Barr

It doesnt get any better than this for our poker community. The APPT has cemented our place in the poker world as a legitimate home for poker in Asia, and we also proved ourselves great poker players by having the most people in the money from any of the forty countries who joined the tournament. 6 of our men out of 24 ITM's just goes to show we know what we've been doing all this time. Good job for everyone in the money!

I'm playing the next one in Manila for sure!


The money winners:

1. Brett Parise (USA) $179,775
2. Ira Blumenthal (Thailand) $113,858
3. Nicholas Bamman (USA) $62,921
4. Van Marcus (Australia) $44,940
5. Maor Feldinger (Isreal) $35,955
6. Roger Spets (Sweden) $26,966
7. Bas van Liere (Netherlands) $20,974
8. Kazuhiro Sato (Japan) $14,981
9. Derrick Hernandez (Philippines) $11,386
10. Steve Junhee Yea (South Korea) $8390
11. Carlo Gosselin (Thailand) $8390
12. D’amor Nario (Philippines) $8390
13. Alexander Fitzgerald (USA) $5993
14. Carlos Lascano (Philippines) $5993
15. Ronald Javier (Philippines) $5993
16. Se Jin Lee (South Korea) $5993
17. Eric Sia (Philippines)$4794
18. Nicolas Chouity (Lebanon) $4794
19. Steven Djingga (Indonesia) $4794
20. Kelly Flynn (USA) $4794
21. Seung Soo Jeon (South Korea) $4794
22. Ronald Singson (Philippines) $4794
23. Jean-Marc Hauducoeur (France) $4794
24. Dan Idema (Canada) $4794

Sunday, August 26, 2007 

Things Slowing Down

Things are slowing down quite considerably here in the Pokerstars APPT final table after losing Japanese player Kazuhiro Sato and Bas Van Liere and the field going to the final 6 players.

Hands are finally holding up, with Sato being eliminated by JJ vs his flopped top pair ten, and Van Liere's A-T running against K-K.

Down to six, now we're REALLY playing poker.


Who Ever Said Poker Was A Skill Game?

It has officially become the night of the underdog as we go through this final table. After Derick's sickening bad beats, we find Ira of the Bangkok crew all in on the turn with a board of K-9-9-T holding K-T. Opponent shows 8-9 off for trips on the flop, and it's looking bad for Ira.

The miracle Ten on the turn says otherwise and Ira doubles up through the big stack!

Intense action. Come over and watch if you can!


APPT Final Table Has Begun, Last Filipino Gets a Bad Beat with AA!

Here we are, day 3 of the biggest Poker tournament in the history of Asia. I'm fortunately sitting here with all the other internet media/blogger people from all over the world as i write this down. Pokerstars has built an awesome TV venue out of the Hyatt Ballroom here, and the air here is simply electrifying.
You can feel the intensity of the atmosphere as everyone braces themselves for some final table action.

It is just the third hand of the day and Kazuhiro Sato of Japan has just moved all in! Apparently nobody wants to risk too much this early when everyone folds.

The same man has just gone all in for the third time, and Derick H. wakes up with pocket queens! He calls the all in and Sato shows A-9. Flop comes A-K-T. No help from turn and river for Derrick and he gets hurt bad while Sato doubles up.

A couple of hands later, Derick raises from early positon, only to be re-raised by young american player Brett Parise, an online qualifier who won his seat through a Pokerstars Satellite. Derick goes in the tank for several seconds then makes what seems to be a desperation all-in given his recent bad beat. Brett Calls him and Derick triumphantly flips over Pocket Rockets! Brett shows Pocket Tens and is dominated 4-1.

The poker gods had other ideas and decided to be even more cruel to the last Filipino standing when the flop came J-9-T, giving Brett a set of tens. Turn and River didnt help Derick, and he is officially out of the tournament. He won $11,386 for his efforts. Good job man! We all know that if not for those bad beats, you would have taken this whole thing down!

So Action continues, and the only person left to cheer for is our good friend Ira from the Bangkok crew.

I'll be updating again very soon today, so stay tuned.


Overall, what a great experience for our young poker community. After today, Poker is going to go into hyperdrive all over Asia and the Philippines, and we will be at the forefront of all of it, we being the Filipino poker Community. We have all come a long way from our humble beginnings from 2-3 years ago, and now we are ready to take on the competitive tournament poker circuit at the world stage, as proven by Derick who made the final table and had to take 2 bad beats in a row just to get eliminated!

Go Philippines!


APPT Final Table

After sticking it out for 12 hours just to give an up to the minute update about the Pokerstars APPT main event, we finally made it down to the last 9 players and the TV table.

Amor N. busted out at 12th for an $8,000+ payday, and the last 12 players took at least 2 hours to make it to the last 9! The small stacks kept doubling up on the river! Finally, after the final guy busts out (sorry i dont even remember who it was), everybody cheers and was glad they could all go home and sleep for tomorrow's big event.

One Pinoy left standing to represent our country in the televised table which will be shown all over the world. Derrick Hernandez, a seasoned poker veteran in both the online and local circuit, played excellent poker all throughout and managed to recover after his big stack got hit, and now he has more than average stack going into the final table. Go Bord!

That's our man in the middle of the table

i will be there tomorrow at the Hyatt ballroom where the awesome and insanely expensive TV table is set up, giving more live updates from the front lines!

See you there!

Saturday, August 25, 2007 

Doc Butch and Carlo Lascano

Another two of our countrymen are out, doc butch and Carlo Lascano from davao. They won $6,000.

Good job!


In the Money at the APPT!

We are in the money!

Japanese player Norihito Suzuki has just busted out going all in with a super short stack and getting called by 2 other players to seal his fate as the bubble boy!

Six Filipinos out of 24 players left, and at least 2 of them have a good chance to make a run for first with their huge stacks. I think our boys represented our local poker community very well today, taking up 2 seats in each table out of 4 tables left.

Everybody is guaranteed just shy of $5,000 for their efforts right now.

Congratulations everybody! now go win the whole thing!



Bubble time!

25 left, 24 paid.

At least 5 of our guys left.

Philippines represent!


27 left in day 2 of the APPT!

Hand for hand time.

The players can smell the money.

24 places paid, and we are now hand for hand.

At least five of our guys are still in, RVS, Eric S., Derek H. doc Butch, and Amor N. Most of them have good stacks too.

The prize pool for this three-day event is as follows:

1st: $179,775
2nd: $113,858
3rd: $62,921
4th: $44,940
5th: $35,955
6th: $26,966
7th: $20,974
8th: $14,981
9th: $11,386
10th - 12th: $8,390
13th - 16th:$5,993
17th - 24th: $4,794

Good luck Bords!


APPT Manila

Poker in the Philippines has come a long way from it's early beginnings around 2004. From small 100 peso home game sit n' gos, improvised chips, make-your-own-rules poker then moving on up to bigger MTT's (P1,500 buy-in! 100+ players!) to underground cardrooms sprouting left and right, and then to the Casino's and PAGCOR finally accepting Poker as a legitimate game.

Today, i'm here at the Hyatt hotel and casino in Malate, Manila writing on-site about the biggest poker tournament the Philippines, even Asia, has ever seen. The APPT is a series of $2,500 buy-in tournaments to us by Pokerstars, the biggest online poker site in the world today. Using Manila as a kick-off point, they will be hosting tournaments all over the region culminating to the main event tournament in Australia.

Why did they use manila as a kick off point? well, Mr. Jeff Haas, APPT's president, described the APPT's mission and vision to help develop Asian Poker and develop the region as the next poker frontier. Apparently, the leaders of the poker industry has noticed us in our little corner of the world when Jeff noted that the largest poker market in the region was the Philippines. Doesn't that just make you feel proud to be a part of the Philippine Poker Community?

The APPT officially kicked off two days ago with a press conference, a great party and celebrity/media freeroll tournament. Our very own Nick G of Pokerfilipinas won the tournament and a seat to the main event worth $2,500! Not only that, he busted out Pokerstars player and multiple WSOP bracelet holder Daniel Negreanu heads up at their table in the semi-shoot out event. Priceless! I had the chance to exchange a few words and photos with the 2005 world champ Joe Hachem, who didn't seem affected at all by his poker fame and was such a cool guy. Daniel was pretty cool too, and we got to chat for a few seconds before i took a picture with him.

just to get an idea, Joe Hachem and Neil Arce walked into an elevator heading up to the poker area. Joe was looking down at his feet when two guys walked in and saw them wearing their Pokerstars logos an said "hey! you guys from Pokerstars?" to which Joe, still looking down, replied "you could say that." and the guys jumped up and said "joe Hachem!" haha... great story

I strongly recommend the local players to come over and watch this event, and be a part of poker history.

Stay tuned for more updates coming very soon. It's currently day two and we are down to 49 players with 24 being the magic number for an ITM finish.

Ill be here til we see our boys make it to ITM ;)

Wednesday, August 22, 2007 

The Metro: Poker's New Home

About two years and several weeks ago... Somewhere on a rooftop in Greenhills, during the middle of an "underground" poker tournament.

Checkpoint: so what do you wanna do?
NickG: i wanna build a card room.
Maverick: let's do it.

2 weeks later, The BBC opened it's sliding doors. It also opened every other door of opportunity for the local poker scene to grow into what it is today. For 100 days, Poker had a home in Manila. After that, poker exploded into the Pinoy consciousness.

It's been a long journey from the 2005 BBC days.

By some twists of fate, our little poker crew met the right people at the right time, people with the same vision and passion for the game. From our humble beginnings we then moved on to bigger and better things...

Not long after that, a plan to create the ultimate dream for the poker community was hatched by the now much bigger crew. A Card Club located outside a Casino, a place where poker is the only game, a place that poker can really call home.

The long wait is over.

Today, Poker has a new home in the country. The Metro Card Club.

The Metro officially opened it's doors five days ago. Seriously, it is officially the best place to play poker in this country right now. Just ask anybody who has been there. Just look at it. It's a thing of beauty! Imagine a place where you can come as you are, feel comfortable, hang out with your friends, have a few drinks, and play poker all night long. A place where you can feel safe while playing, where you know that the people running it know what they are doing, and the people you are playing with arent there to cheat you or rip you off. A new era in our local poker scene has began with the opening of The Metro, and it's a good thing.

Come by. Everyone is welcome. It's our gift to the poker community, made not just of brick and mortar, but of hard work, sweat, and sacrifice. The foundations are there, and poker in the Philippines has officially been built a new house.

Now it's up to everyone else to make it a home.

See you at The Metro!

Wednesday, August 08, 2007 

300K gtd Poker Weekend was a Blast

So another successful tournament for the whole crew wrapped up last saturday. 60 seats filled, awesome poker play, great group of players, and everything else you could ask for in a poker tournament.

These big tournaments are always a reunion of sorts for us guys who were there when the seeds of Pinoy Poker were being sown. Funny that the guys who made the final table were mostly the same guys who were playing poker a couple of years ago in the regular home games, the "underground" MTT's, and of course in the hallowed poker grounds of the BBC...

Congrats to Mnlgrnd, one of the true legit Pinoy online poker pros in the country, for winning 2nd place for a nice P72,000 payday! Same goes to Nick, who sat to my immediate right most of the tournament, for playing a solid game and taking the whole thing down fro P114,000+ last man standing of maybe another 6,000 i think. Good job guys!

Check out Poker Filipinas and ManilaGrind for pics and other details.;)

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Quote of the Day

  • The best poker I've ever played has always entailed peace. A relaxed comfort. Eyes open, ears open, radar up. Absorbing my opponent's every message. Taking them as they come. Not mixing what those messages are with what I want them to be. It's like an aerial view. A view from above the myriad luck-dependent reactions of those many people who never gain such a peace. And when you gain that view, that peace - when you'd rather have the truth, no matter how disappointing, over a false hope, no matter how desirable - then you're a player. The hand you're on slips into a stream of thousands of other hands, no one of which, because of your lofty view, seems unduly important, no false fearful emotions rise within you. When you gain the peace of lofty perspective, you're a player, and when you're a player, you're free.- from "King of a Small World" by Rick Benett
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