The likes of David Pham, Hermilo Vargas, and Ioannis Angelou-Konstas dominate the poker news this week after doing some pretty impressive things on the felt.
It’s a short and sweet round-up, this week, because poker news has been – short and sweet.
We will begin in the live poker realm, and the awakening of the Dragon. David Pham has been sleeping beneath the slumbering effects of his three World Series of Poker (WSOP) bracelets, but this week a thrush began cracking a nut outside his door, and he woke with a vengeance.
Pham entered the $1,600 buy-in 2018 Wynn Spring Classic Main Event with 983 other hopefuls and turned them into toast on his way to a $240,254 victory. Nine days later, he was one of 705 entrants to dig his claws into the $1,675 buy-in World Series of Poker Circuit (WSOPC) Main Event at the Bicycle Casino in California, and won that one for $216,890, also.
And David Pham wasn’t the only player in North America doing some pretty cool things this week. Hermilo Vargas retained his WSOPC Monster Stack title at the Bicycle Casino in Bell Gardens. Vargas beat 1,317 entrants to take the $86,270 first prize. The last time he entered the same event he beat 1,150 entrants for $71,195.
And there were also some outstanding performances in Europe.
Georgios Zisimopoulos spent the week competing in the Merit Poker Top Guns Festival in Kyrenia and came away with three titles.
The #4 All-Time Live Tournament Money Earner in Greece beat 265 entrants to win $18,280 in a $275 rebuy, 145 entrants to win the $28,200 first prize in a Mix-Max event, and 307 entrants to win the Main Event Warm Up event for $46,011 (he also finished 13/371 in the Main Event).
And Zisimopoulos’s compatriot Ioannis Angelou-Konstas became the first person to win two WPTDeepStacks Main Events on European soil after overcoming a field of 315 entrants to capture the title in Brussels. His last victory came in the Netherlands where he beat 251 entrants and banked €56,806.
Drifting into the UK & Ireland, and Laurence O’Kane defeated 1,071 entrants to take the €43,550 first prize in the partypoker LIVE Grand Prix Ireland in Dublin, and Gareth Gardner won a $30,000 Platinum Pass and £13,480 after winning the PokerStars LIVE London Series Main Event in London’s Hippodrome Casino.
Shifting focus to the Asian-Pacific region and Samuel Dessaix-Porter survived a flu bug to win the APL Million in Sydney’s Star Casino. Dessaix-Porter earned $247,500 and a WSOP package. And Kalyan Chakravarthy was victorious in the first online/live hybrid event held by Adda52 in India. The game began online with 1,175 entrants. The organisers then flew the final eight players to the Deltin Casino in Goa where Chakravarthy won the $44,000 first prize and a dinner date with Bollywood actress Minissha Lamba.
Online Poker News
Lingering on the Asian poker theme a tad longer and Bryn Kenney has become a sponsored pro. The reigning Global Poker Index North American Player of the Year joined the Chinese poker brand GGPoker and will appear on the GGNetwork.
PokerStars announced plans to host their first Play Money Charity event. The one billion guaranteed event will raise funds for the Right to Play charity with $10 from each entry going towards education for underprivileged children. A host of PokerStars Ambassadors will compete including Barry Greenstein, Jake Cody and Aditya Agarwal.
Unibet continued to motor with more marketing momentum this week. The results of the inaugural Unibet Online Series (UOS) are in, and it was a success with the Swedes attracting €80k+ more than the €300k guarantee, with less than €10k in overall overlays. Unibet Ambassador, Dave Lappin, won the High and Overall Leaderboards and picks up a seat in the season-ending Battle of Champions.
And the award-winning online poker room partnered with the highly successful Cash Game Festival this week. Unibet will send players to a range of 24/7 live cash game festivals throughout Europe and will be a co-sponsor of the event.
I once again shared my opinion on a few matters this week. When the Intel Extreme Masters (IEM) esports festival in Katowice attracted over 900 journalists I reminisced of my time in poker live reporting in Tap, Tap, Tap: The Prodding of Live Poker Tournament Pain.
I mused about the sameness of the GTO loving poker players and questioned whether there was another way in The Proliferation of the Playwright Poker Player.
Finally, I began a new column focusing on marketing within the gambling industry starting with the sterling work that Matt Berkey is doing over at the Solve For Why poker coaching academy in Gambling Marketing Musings: What is Solve for Why Solving?
Time ladies and gentlemen.
Someone had just called the clock.