the read between hands
Evan Psarras joins elite WCOOP club
APL Player of the Year George Apat More WSOP glory for TeamAPL
WA ALL THE WAY Perth’s Khai Nguyen wins APLPT Gold Coast title
It’s off to Crown – APLPT Melbourne preview
ISSUE 14 •$5.95
Issue 14 – Spring 2010
4 THE INSIDE STRAIGHT
54 SHARK PATROL Tread carefully if you spot any of these APL high achievers pulling up a chair at a table in your next tournament
The latest news & happening in the APL and the world of poker; plus details of Martino Lascala’s own APL marathon
56 PLAYER DIARY
11 STEPHEN DAVY
TeamAPL’s Nick Filippopoulos has joined an elite club of APL players who’ve cashed in the WSOP Main Event
One of the APL’s most popular personalities chats about two emotional charity events over which he’s presided in recent months
58 DEADMAN’S DEN Back by popular demand, take a look at the lighter side of poker – from our infamous lookalikes to jokes and fast facts about the game
KnowtheDeal 12 GEORGE APAT Meet the 2009-10 APL Player of the Year as he reflects on an amazing year at the APL felt and with TeamAPL in Las Vegas
15 CHARLIE ELIAS We welcome the man who was the highest placed Aussie in the 2009 WSOP Main Event to the Shuffle team
17 EMMA GRACE One of the Australia’s highest profile female players, the 2009 TeamAPL member discusses the pros and cons of this male-dominated industry
19 LANDON BLACKHALL Our own croupier-in-residence provides some valuable tips for calculating tricky sidepots during your next APL tournament
21 SHUFFLE ACADEMY Everyday interactions provide a perfect opportunity to test your ability to “read” tells at the poker table
22 JAMIE GLAZIER Conserve your “brain battery” at the poker table to maximise your ability to make the correct decisions when it matters most
60 HEADS UP
44 WA ALL THE WAY In our cover story, we celebrate a Western Australian one-two after Khai Nguyen defeated Danny Breadsell for the APLPT Gold Coast title 23 SEAN CALLANDER
40 APLPT GOLD COAST
Macau offers a great alternative for players aiming to mix an exotic holiday experience with a little poker
All the news, results and pics from Jupiters Casino where Khai Nguyen captured the second APLPT title for 2010
24 VIRTUAL FELT
46 APLPT MELBOURNE
Tread carefully when it comes time to take the “next step” AKA “taking a shot” with your dreams of joining the pro ranks
A complete preview of the final event on season one of the APLPT as the tour heads to the home of Aussie poker, Crown, in Melbourne
48 HAND HISTORY
Our complete coverage of TeamAPL’s trek to Las Vegas for the 2010 World Series of Poker Main Event
We examine at the history of Australia’s premier poker event and one of the world’s top tournaments: the Aussie Millions Poker Championship
36 EVAN PSARRAS
52 VENUE REVIEW
We chat exclusively with the just the second Australian player to win a prestigious World Championship of Online Poker title
They don’t call him “The Godfather” for nothing – meet 10-time WSOP bracelet winner and dual Main Event champion Doyle Brunson
62 COMMUNITY CARDS The team of Fortune & Freedman have the northern and eastern suburbs of Melbourne covered when it comes to APL games
THERIVER 64 TOURNAMENT CALENDAR Check out the upcoming events on the local, regional and international poker calendar, including details of APLPT Melbourne satellites
65 AUTOGRAPHS Capture your own memories from Melbourne’s Crown Casino during the final APLPT event of 2010
The Shuffle team look at what’s on offer at some of the most popular APL venues across Australia and New Zealand
from the cOo
Two down, one to go APLPT heads to Melbourne
It’s been a hectic period for the team at APL headquarters but as Steven Clare (General Counsel, APL Legal & Chief Operating Officer) discusses, there are still plenty of big events to come in 2010
n our last edition of Shuffle we celebrated the fantastic achievements of inaugural APLPT winner Troy Brindle from Tamworth NSW and as we put this edition to print, we applaud yet another winner – Khai Nguyen (pictured above), the 2010 APLPT Gold Coast champion, who took home the $100,000 first place prize package. In true APL style the 214-strong field was treated to a worldclass poker tournament in the stunningly refurbished Jupiters Poker Room as they vied for a prize pool exceeding more than $200,000! Not only was the poker extremely memorable, thanks to APL sponsors Playboy Fragrances and Wild Turkey Bourbon the entertainment was nothing short of spectacular. With planning for Crown “full-steam-ahead” we’re all now looking forward to the last APLPT stop for 2010, the glamorous Crown Entertainment Complex in Melbourne. The player count is climbing, quickly signalling that this event is going to be the biggest by far. This is always good news for players as it boosts that elusive prize pool! Another great event hitting the APL calendar on October 31 is the legendary Battle of the Regions Tournament to be held at Revesby Workers Club in NSW. The question on everyone’s lips is whether the last Battle of the Regions' winners South West “Home Game All Stars” will again take home the title. As the ink dried on our last issue of Shuffle magazine, the temperature was starting to heat up in Vegas ahead of the 2010 WSOP Main Event, which took place from July 5-17. A 31-strong team of APL’s most elite players made the long journey to the “Mecca” of poker, primed and ready to take on the world’s biggest names in the game.
Two of APL’s dream team made it through the 7319-strong field to secure a piece of the $60 million prize pool – Nick Filippopoulos (USD $27,519) and Phil Faux (USD $24,097). From all accounts, thanks to the great entertainment, awesome sightseeing and fantastic camaraderie, the trip was one to remember for all players – whether they made it to the cash or not. Whether you’re a player, tournament director, franchisee or APL staff member, one of the things that keep everyone energised about the APL brand is the way it continually evolves. With final planning underway for 2011, this evolution is set to be anything but staid and the tight-lipped HQ team are struggling to keep their excitement under wraps. As we’ve said previously, we’re committed to delivering the best pub and club poker product available. To continue do this successfully, we rely on your feedback – so please keep in touch with us by Facebook, SMS, phone and email. Let us know what you like, don’t like and want to see more of so we can keep delivering the APL experiences you enjoy. Steven Clare General Counsel & COO Australian Poker League SHUFFLE: The Official Magazine of the APL
Issue 14 – Spring 2010
Published by: Australian Poker League CEO/Co-founder: Martin Martinez COPYRIGHT: Material in this magazine may not be reprinted without the written permission of APL PRODUCTION: Monarch Media (03) 9863 8223 Project Manager: Stephen Doig Editorial coordinator: Landon Blackhall Art Director: Mark Sidoti PRINT: Caxton Web
A GREAT HAND DEMANDS A GREAT BOURBON.
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Poker players have ringside seat as big cat attacks As members of TeamAPL discovered on their recent trek to Las Vegas, the MGM Grand is home to one of the most unique poker rooms in the city. It’s surrounded by a massive sports book, the Rain Forest Café, Centrifuge Bar (complete with go-go dancers) and a lion (that’s real lions) habitat. So poker players had a scarily close view of a shocking incident in early September when one of the MGM lions attacked its trainer. The trainer was immediately transported to a nearby hospital, where he received stitches but narrowly avoided serious injury. The incident was reminiscent of the city’s most famous animal mauling when magician Roy Horn (of Siegfried and Roy fame) was savaged by a tiger in 2003.
APLPT seats up for grabs in Battle of the Regions It’s one of the most popular events on the APL calendar so another big field is assured for the latest edition of the APL’s Battle of the Regions. Defending champions the Home Game Allstars from Sydney’s South West region will be the team to watch at the Revesby Workers Club on October 31. Registration is at 10am for a noon start with the entry fee $80 per player or $640 per team. The Battle of the Regions is capped at 60 teams. The format is four shootouts – three preliminary rounds and one final round. Players start with 2500 in chips with levels of 15 minutes. Each team member plays and points are awarded for each table. After three rounds all points are tallied and the top eight teams progress to the final shootout round. Based on a minimum of 18 teams, prizes will include APL Poker Tour seats and cash prizes. The Revesby Workers Club is at 2B Brett St, Revesby, NSW. Teams must register and pay prior to the event so be quick and grab an entry form from your Tournament Director.
Players of the Month book tickets to Melbourne The field is already being assembled for the final APL Poker Tour event of 2010 with the recent announcements of the Players of the Month for August. Corey Scott (1515) was kingpin in NSW narrowly ahead of Grant Miliss (1465) while Tony Gallacher topped the leaderboard in NZ (1110). Phil Green and Jason Brander each finished with 1440 points in Queensland while in SA, reigning APL Player of the Year George Apat picked up where he left off last season. Hamish Armati (1465) was a clear winner in Victoria. Players of the Month for August receive an APL Poker Tour seat enabling for APLPT Melbourne at Crown from November 26-29. Back in July, the Players of the Month were Carol Deeney (NSW, 1500), Mus Tomasi (NZ, 1040), Thia Christensen (Qld, 1550), Bradley Cece (SA, 1370) and Christopher Gillman (Vic, 1320).
Inside running for a 2011 Aussie Millions Main Event seat As we countdown to the 150th running of Australia’s most famous horse race, the Melbourne Cup, Crown is celebrating in unique style. Instead of a $3 mystery bet this year imagine cheering your horse down the Flemington straight with $10,600 Aussie Millions Main Event seat as your prize. That’s the opportunity poker players will have this year when on Melbourne Cup eve Crown Poker runs its Melbourne Cup Sweep tournament. This year the stakes are even higher with three $10,600 Aussie Millions seats guaranteed. The tournament starts as a normal multi-table freezeout and play will progress until 24 players remain. At this stage the tournament will be paused and the chips counted. Once the chip leader is established they will have the opportunity to choose a runner from the Melbourne Cup field. The second chip leader will choose next, then the third chip leader and so on until all 24 players have been allocated a horse. These lucky players will be cheering their horses home on Cup Day as the players whose picks finish in the top three will win a 2011 Aussie Millions Main event seat! With an expected field of 300 entrants there will also be as significant cash prizepool distributed on the night.
“Guys, let’s make this a deep stack, we might be here a while” The South American nation of Chile celebrated when news emerged that the 33 miners who were trapped by a collapse at the San Esteban gold mine in the Atacama desert in August were discovered alive. But joy turned to frustration when it became apparent that rescue workers would need weeks if not months to rescue the miners who are trapped 700 metres beneath the surface. The workers have air, water and food but the tedium of the long wait quickly set in. Solution? The daughter of the former Chilean football star Franklin Lobos told London’s Daily Mirror that he is playing hours of poker. Carolina Lobos (pictured celebrating news of her father’s survival) said: “It will be difficult, I’m sure.” “But I’m not worried about him. I know he is happy and content down there because he is playing lots of poker and cards. It is good for his mind.” No jokes about playing like a rock.
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Sydney duo book TeamAPL spots for 2011 Kevin Gardner became one of the first players to book a seat to the 2011 WSOP Main Event as part of TeamAPL when he captured the APL Pro Open title for September over a field of 447 rivals at Club Central in Hurstville. The field was culled down to 240 players after two flights, with a staggering 101 players KOed in less than two hours of the opening flight. There wasn’t much let-up in the carnage and it didn’t take long for the final table to be decided. Roger Hamblin (second), Saj Iqbal (third), Stan Tran (fourth), Cheryl Sumbar (fifth), Ricardo Medrano (sixth), Laurie Buik (seventh), Calum Rowan (eighth) and Joe Guinta (ninth) all received APL Poker Tour packs, but it was Sydney South’s Kevin Gardner who took it down to earn a spot on TeamAPL. • Gardner will join Reuben Siva in Las Vegas next July after his triumph in the August Pro Open event at the Parramatta Leagues Club.
Shuffle up and deal at your Christmas party Are you looking for a great team building activity, maybe a night out to reward your workers or a unique Christmas party? Corporate Poker has all the options available to make you go all in on your next corporate event. Whatever it is you may be looking for we can tailor a package to suit your needs. Recent events have included: Team Building Nights, Casino Poker, Bucks Nights, Western Shoot-Out Poker, Masquerade Poker and Celebrity Poker. All Corporate Events are supervised by professionally trained tournament directors who will do their best to ensure your night is a success. All event packages include: tournament director; APL branded Poker tables/chips/cards; tournament computer; five-minute learn to play DVD; tournament tutorial and prizes for the winner and runner-up. For more information contact corporateevents@playAPL.com or (02) 9648 0191.
London calling as Lisandro wins fifth WSOP bracelet Jeff Lisandro has strengthened his claim to the title of Australia’s greatest ever poker player after securing a fifth WSOP bracelet. The 2009 WSOP Player of the Year won the second event on the 2010 WSOP Europe schedule; the ₤5250 Pot Limit Omaha event. The field comprised a world-class line-up of 120 players, and featured three other WSOP bracelet winners – Jeff Madsen, Willie Tann and Chris Bjorin – at the final table. John Racener, a member of the 2010 WSOP November Nine, placed fifth. The victory gives Lisandro exalted status within the poker world, as he continues to acquire victories. Gold bracelet number five won in London places him in a tie for 12th place on the all-time WSOP wins list -- along with such luminaries as Stu Ungar, Berry Johnston, Chris “Jesus” Ferguson, Allen Cunningham, Scotty Nguyen, Ted Forrest and Gary “Bones” Berland. According to official records, Lisandro now has five wins, 15 final table appearances, and 34 in-the-money finishes at the WSOP, with his first cash coming back in 1997. He also holds a WSOP Circuit championship (gold ring) won at Harvey’s Lake Tahoe in 2005.
Missing chip sets help land northern NSW man in court Everyone wants to get his or her hands on some APL merchandise, but one youngster took that concept a bit far in recent months. John McCord’s alleged crime spree in June was only brought to an end when police arrested him in a stolen car at Emerald Beach following a high-speed highway pursuit. The 19-year-old admitted his guilt to a string of serious charges in the Coffs Harbour Local Court, according to the Daily Examiner. The 13 charges against him range from trying to outrun police in a stolen car, to reckless and negligent driving endangering the public. A host of alleged vehicle break-ins and stealing allegations cap off his lengthy wrap sheet, but to those offences he’s pleaded not guilty. Police allege he stole a host of property, including cars, cash, a video camera, a GPS unit, a butane gas stove, a car refrigerator and CDs – plus three Australian Poker League chip sets.
Hansen’s high stakes horrors continue Things just keep getting worse and worse for Gus Hansen on Full Tilt Poker. According to HighStakesDB.com, “The Great Dane” dropped nearly USD $1.2 million on Full Tilt Poker over 2166 tracked hands on a single day in August. This money was lost to Phil Ivey (+ 679k) and Cole South (+ 493k). For the month of August, Hansen is now down an eye-popping USD $2,856,898.00 over 43,224 hands. Phil Ivey has benefited the most from Hansen’s catastrophic month, pocketing over USD $1.8 million. Gus has also managed to blow another strong start to the year. At the end of February, Hansen was up more than USD $1.8 million. Thanks in large part to his disastrous August, Gus is now down over $2.3 million on the year. The same thing happened to Gus last year on FTP - a strong start followed by a horrific downswing. Since January 1st, 2007, Gus is down approximately USD $9.23 million over a total of 871,996 hands on FTP. Phil Ivey, on the other hand, has made nearly $20 million during the same period of time on the site.
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ANZPT Player of the Year battle goes down to the wire
Martino back on the march towards Player of the Year title Playing poker for a living is a long, hard grind that can sometimes drive you mad. Take professional poker player Phil ‘The Unabomber’ Laak for example – he put his body (and sanity) on the line in June this year and played a cash game at the Bellagio in Las Vegas for 115 hours straight in order to break the Guinness World Record for the longest poker session ever recorded, all in the name of charity. Fast forward to July and Laak, along with thousands of other players from around the world, put themselves up to the challenge of the WSOP Main Event. Two-hour blind levels can take a lot out of you, but if you’re lucky enough to go deep and run good, you’re doing that for up to 14 hours a day for eight days. So is it possible to go for even longer? One man from the Sydney suburb of Croydon did just that. After a shoulder injury put him out of work as a truck driver, 53-year-old father of three Martino Lascala chalked up a mind-boggling 867 APL games this year – that’s an average of more than two games a day – which equals to more than 3030 hours at the poker table (based on the average run time of 3.5 hours per APL game). According to Lascala, it could have been an even bigger number than that. “Unfortunately, I was involved in a car accident and put me out of action for a while,” he said. “As a result I finished fifth overall in the Player of the Year race, but I reckon I was travelling along really well for a while there. It was very tiring and to play that many games is a big commitment.” Lascala has been playing since August 2008, making his debut at the Bankstown Sports Club in Sydney’s West and has chalked 333 final table appearances in his APL career, including 40 wins – and it appears that Lascala is not done yet, having already chalked up 165 games (and counting) this year. Despite all his hard work, Lascala still hasn’t been able to break through to play in an APL major event: “I’ve never come close to even making the money in big events like the Pro Opens or State Finals, but hopefully I’ll run good and get that APL Poker Tour ticket for Melbourne – and when I get there, I’m going to win!”
The race for the overall points title in the 2010 PokerStars.net Australia New Zealand Poker Tour is set for another exciting finish. Last year, almost $100,000 in prizes were awarded last year to the players – Tony Hachem, Chris Levick and Joel Dodds – who filled the top three spots on the leaderboard. Dodds had a chance to overtake Hachem at the final event but fell agonisingly short. Hachem bolted from the stalls with a final table in Adelaide and victory in Perth, but Sydneysider John Maklouf has steadily chipped away at the lead (final tables in Sydney, Canberra and
ANZPT Leaderboard (after six events) 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
John Maklouf (NSW) Tony Hachem (Vic) Andrew Scarf (NSW) Aaron Benton (NSW) Michael Spilkin (Vic) Rennie Carnevale (NSW) Ricky Kroesen (Qld) Angelo Hamataj (Vic) Vesko Zmukic (WA) Jason Gray (NSW)
193.80 181.65 164.50 164.45 152.90 149.55 138.65 133.70 126.10 116.50
Queenstown) and sits atop the leaderboard with two events to play in Melbourne and Darwin. With 10 participation points, along with at least 50 points for a win available, the race to the Season 2 ANZPT Points title is still up for grabs.
Hall of Fame to welcome two new players in '10 After a two-month voting period, Harrah’s officials have announced the top 10 vote getters for the Poker Hall of Fame Class of 2010. Four criteria are required for a person to be considered for the Poker Hall of Fame: “A player must have played poker against acknowledged top competition; played for high stakes; played consistently well, gaining the respect of peers; stood the test of time; or, for non-players, contributed to the overall growth and success of the game of poker, with indelible positive and lasting results.” The 10 nominees for the Poker Hall of Fame Class of 2010 following the two-month public voting period are Chris Ferguson, Barry Greenstein, Jennifer Harman, Dan Harrington, Phil Ivey, Linda Johnson, Tom McEvoy, Daniel Negreanu, Scotty Nguyen and Erik Seidel. Johnson and Harman are already members of the Women in Poker Hall of Fame, while McEvoy, Nguyen, Harrington and Ferguson are past WSOP Main Event winners. Two of the 10 players are expected to be inducted at a ceremony to coincide with the WSOP Main Event final table in November. Last year, World Poker Tour host Mike Sexton was the Poker Hall of Fame’s lone inductee.
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stephen pro interview news davy
Community comes together to remember friends
Whether it’s a charity tournament at your local venue or the Ante Up for Africa event at the World Series of Poker, the poker community is always quick to lend a helping hand for a worthy cause. NSW Central Coast franchisee manager Stephen Davy has harnessed such goodwill in recent months for two very special poker events. Stephen Davy: Amanda was a wellrespected soccer referee and member of the Kanwal Rovers Soccer Club and was a popular maths teacher at Wyong High School. She was really well known throughout the community and it was one of our regular players and a good friend of Amanda, Steve Frame, who came up with the idea. With the family’s blessing, he helped set up the event. Members of the soccer club and our regular APL players headed down to the Doyalson Wyee RSL to play on the night before the Australia versus Ghana World Cup game. Obviously the Aussies didn’t get the result we wanted
but it was a fantastic night and Amanda’s family were really grateful. SM: You also recently held the Alan Clark Memorial Deepstack event in August. Tell us a little about Alan. SD: Alan was a great friend. He used to help us set up all our tournaments and was just one of those guys who was loved by everyone. He loved playing cards – poker was his life – and he played almost every night of the week. We figured the least we could do for him a proper sendoff. Normally we have a monthly deepstack where we average about 50 players, but for the Alan Clark Memorial Deepstack we had a field of 90 players.
SM: Has there been much feedback from the community and what do you have planned in the future? SD: We hold an annual barefoot bowls and poker day but I’ve got plans to host a “lock-in” event, where we book out a venue, start at 11pm at night and play through to 9am the following morning – a big deepstack tourney with nowhere to run! We’re always open to new ideas, anything that makes it fun for our players. We’ve had a lot of positive feedback from not just our regular poker players, but from the wider community as well. We do these events for a number of reasons, but most importantly, I genuinely believe that it’s just the right thing to do. I believe that we should all share that community spirit, so little things like these events have a nice flow-on affect at times.
The tournament was won by Neil “Monty Burns” Montgomery – he’s a great guy and Alan would have been rapt that he won. Even when he was shortstacked at the final table with four players to
go, Neil said that he knew that he was always going to win it for his mate “Clarkey” and he was true to his word! We’re now going to hold the Alan Clark Memorial Deepstack event every six months. Alan’s nickname was “The Destroyer” so as an added bonus, whoever wins the event will keep his nickname for six months in order to honour his memory.
s ad e h
Name: George Apat Nickname: The Paralyzer Age: 51 State: South Australia Region: Adelaide Occupation: Bricklayer APL debut: June 2008, Albion Hotel, Kilburn 2009-10 tournaments: 567 Average points: 44.8 Preferred venue: Britannia Hotel, Norwood Favourite hand: K-10 Major APL events: 2009 Wild Turkey Grand Slam; 2010 Wild Turkey Poker Classic; 2010 APL Poker Tour Sydney; 2010 APL Poker Tour Gold Coast (seventh place)
Paralyzing the opposition I
Is it something in the water? South Australia continues to punch above its weight on the national poker scene with George “The Paralyzer” Apat the latest to join the list of poker champions from Adelaide. Shuffle’s Landon Blackhall chatted with the reigning APL Player of the Year during his deep run at Jupiters in the recent APLPT Gold Coast tournament.
t’s been a stellar year for South Australian poker players at all levels of the game. The SA State of Origin secured their second title in three years dauring the Victorian Poker Championships, while online phenoms Jarred Graham and Jonathan Karamalikis have enjoyed incredible success on both the live and virtual felt.
That success has carried into APL ranks, as South Australia laid claim to successive APL Player of the Year titles. In 2008-2009, it was Craig Ivey who took out the APL’s most prestigious title. Twelve months on, George Apat survived a torrid race to the finish line to claim this prestigious honour. One could say that it was fate for the
51-year-old bricklayer, who played his first APL tournament after having just finished major renovation works at his debut venue, the Albion Hotel in Kilburn back in 2008. “I was trying to find some things to do because I had a lot of spare time after my separation,” Apat said. “I was driving past the Albion Hotel one morning and saw
profile george apat
A brief history of poker in South Australia ▼
Long before the Crown Casino and the Aussie Millions, Adelaide Casino was considered the home of poker in Australia. From 1987 until 2001, Adelaide hosted the Australasian Poker Championships, boasting a long honour roll that includes Australian Poker Hall of Famer Gary Benson. Adelaide Casino now hosts an event as part of the Australia New Zealand Poker Tour and the Adelaide Poker Championships.
Adelaide is the home city of Australia’s first Aussie Millions Main Event champion. In 2009, Stewart Scott broke the local drought and pocketed the highest first prize payout in Aussie poker tournament history (AUD $2,000,000).
Other South Australian players making their mark on the national and international scene include James Obst and Jarred Graham. Obst is one of the world’s best-known online players (he’s the only Aussie with a WCOOP title to his name) while Graham won the APPT Sydney High Rollers Event and Sydney Poker Championships Main Event titles last year. ▼
home was just unbelievable. I felt really proud and all I wanted to do was do well for them because of their support.” Apat may have had his fair share of success in the last few years, but that’s not to say he’s resting on his laurels. After a solid run earlier this year at the APL Poker Tour event in Sydney (“unfortunately, I was the bubble boy”), he finished on the final table in seventh place at the APL Poker Tour Gold Coast event. But for Apat, it’s not just about the glory: “I’ve made a stack of new friends – they’re almost like a new family. That’s part of the reason why many of us go to poker; it’s a great social outlet for us. I’m playing a little less poker these days, but I still love the game and playing for fun without the pressure, but I guess you have to wear it if you’re chasing the big ones like majors or POTY,” he said. “My advice for those who are looking to try and win the APL Player of the Year title is to not panic early. It’s a commitment for 12 months so you’ve got plenty of time, but if you can set yourself some goals and achievements – something like two wins and six top fours a month – then you’re on target to get there at the end. “You’ll also need to play your game differently – definitely fold more often and don’t call or raise with so many marginal hands. But it doesn’t matter how good a player you are, you’ll need some luck and also need to be able to handle the bad beats along the way!”
Another proud South Australian, Jonathan Karamalikis won the 2010 Aussie Millions $1650 Bounty Event and made the final table of the $100,000 buy-in Hold’em Challenge, followed by wins in both the ANZPT Sydney High Rollers and the Victorian Poker Championship $10,200 High Stakes Event.
a lot of cars out the front. I thought I’d pop in and say hello to a few people I met during the renovation works and it turns out they were hosting an APL game. I sat there for a little while and watched and thought ‘I like this’, so I came back the following week to join up and have a go.” Apat had always been a fan of card games, regularly playing Canasta and euchre with his fishing buddies, but never Texas Hold’em: “I used to play a lot of Manila beforehand, so it took me a little while to grasp the one-card or any-card rule, so I folded a few straights and flushes along the way in my first few games, but I think I’ve got the gist of it now!” It certainly didn’t take all that long for Apat to learn the intricacies of the game, as in his first year of APL he actually finished seventh overall in the 2008-2009 Player of the Year Race. He also had a lot of help from his new friends. “I got a lot of tips and lessons from guys like Craig Ivey, Russell Gibbie and Rob ‘Hoover’ Lark. Those guys gave me a lot of hints and tips on what to do and what not to do.” “I wasn’t even dreaming about chasing POTY this year. Finishing seventh last year took up a lot of my time. It’s a real hard grind and I witnessed how Craig Ivey went through it for 12 months and all the pressures that came with trying to make it. “Then about six months into the year I was travelling well, so I set myself some goals of where I wanted to finish each week and just kept achieving them. Ron Wilson had been leading for almost nine months of the year and was definitely the man to catch, so I just worked out what I needed to do to pass him. It was a good fight towards the end and when I finally caught Ron it was a bit of a leapfrog battle, but then I pulled together a few good wins in a row and built up a big margin.” A big margin indeed – in fact, he was more than 1000 points clear of his nearest rival when the 2009-2010 POTY race ended, much to the delight of his family and friends: “They were ecstatic, although some of them complained they weren’t seeing much of me because I was playing almost two games a night! They were all excited when they found out that I was going to Las Vegas and just the fact that I had even won the POTY title was good enough in their eyes.” Apat indeed packed his bags and to Las Vegas for the 2010 WSOP Main Event with TeamAPL. While he didn’t make the money, Apat lapped up every minute of his time in the USA. “It was sensational. The WSOP Main Event was a great tournament with a fantastic standard of poker. The amount of support I had from all my friends back
2009-10 APL Player of the Year final standings 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
George Apat Ben Aldons Ron Wilson James Charlton Martino Lascala John Nikolaou Bill McDermid Rino Verrusio Matt Muir Mitch Caton
567 14,475 361 13,425 694 13,325 426 12,600 877 12,210 812 12,170 545 11,750 484 11,445 302 11,320 360 11,170
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Marathon Man Pace yourself in the race for the ultimate prize
In 2009, TeamAPL player Charlie Elias was the highest-placed Australian in the WSOP Main Event, finishing in 53rd place and taking home USD $138,000. Charlie has now joined the Shuffle Magazine team and in his first column chats about what it takes to make a deep run in a multi-day MTT.
et’s face it – playing in the WSOP Main Event compared to playing at your local APL venue is a whole different ball game. It’s one of the most physically, mentally and emotionally draining challenges you’ll ever face. It’s not a place where you can go and meet up with your mates, have a few drinks and spend a good night together. You have to be really prepared, avoiding the normal things you do with your friends or anything that is going to put you off your game. One bad move and it could be your last. Here are just some of the things that I learned that will help you in any multi-day tournament, but particularly long events like the WSOP Main Event.
big no-no. Remain focused at all times. A lot of players also get distracted by the glitz and glamour of the nightlife that you’ll often find at a casino. Don’t be tempted into joining your friends for a big night out before the tournament – you’ll have plenty of time to do that once you’ve busted.
Pace yourself. I found that breaking up the day really helped me stay focused. You’ll be at the table for up to 12 hours a day with a 20-minute break every blind level (each level is two hours long), plus a 90-minute dinner break. Don’t feel as if you have to stay at the table the whole time – take a quick five-minute “time-out” every hour and refresh yourself. You’ve got all the time in the world, so missing a few hands every level won’t take much out of your stack.
Don’t be afraid to fold big hands. A lot of players I watched tend to call all the way to the river just because they have high pockets, only to end up hitting the rail. If you think that the player has a made hand, chances are they probably do.
Treat the game seriously. Things like eating at the table, chatting on the phone, fiddling with your iPod or doing anything that is going to distract you is a
Take the time to study your opponents. Watch out for players’ tells (e.g. shaking feet and hands, heavy breathing, facial expressions, rapid heartbeat, etc). Also, try and spot the weakest player on your table. Every time I was moved to a new table I would seek out the weakest player and attack them. These players will help you build your stack up slowly.
Get in first and be aggressive. Try to lead out into as many small pots as you can and avoid getting involved in bigger pots unless you know you have the nuts. Your objective is to make sure that they don’t come up against you and outdraw you with those marginal hands, so don’t hesitate to raise and raise big to get them out early.
Take all the help you can get. When I took the chip lead of the WSOP Main Event on day five, I suddenly found myself surrounded by media, players and their agents. It just so happened I was also approached by Joe Hachem’s mental conditioning coach (and Shuffle columnist), Jamie Glazier. Jamie offered me some help, but I laughed it off. In hindsight, I wish I had taken him up on his offer, because when I was eliminated on day seven, I was so mentally drained and it took me a long while to recover. Above all, always stay positive. If you cop a bad beat, recollect your thoughts and move onto the next hand. Walk away from the table if you have to – you can never allow yourself to go on tilt because you’ll end up going home early. And if your run does come to an end, don’t be angry or upset. After all, you’ve just played in the biggest poker tournament in the world! It’s every poker player’s dream to rub shoulders with the world’s best at the WSOP and although thousands of people take their seats every year, for many, it’s an opportunity they get to experience only once in their lifetime. I certainly hope that my experience in 2009 won’t be my last and I’m already back at the tables trying to win another seat. I hope I see you on the tables at the WSOP Main Event next year!
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I am woman hear me roar As the highest placed Australian female in the 2009 WSOP Main Event as part of TeamAPL, Emma Grace can’t wait to see more ladies matching it in poker’s biggest events.
guess everyone plays poker for different reasons and those reasons change. Four years ago when I first started to play poker, it was my father who invited me to play a game at the local RSL where we used to meet and have a bite to eat and a catch-up while my two daughters had a play in the kids club. I knew absolutely nothing about how to play so that day I looked up on the internet and wrote down the hand rankings on a piece of paper. Looking back I laugh as I remember asking someone if all the same suit was good, I think I flopped an Ace high flush with improved to a royal! Other women like Leo Margets (the highest placed female in the 2009 WSOP Main Event) began playing poker by accident in 2005. Out for the night, Margets asked a guy if he wanted to go for a drink and when he refused because he wanted to go and play poker, she asked if she could join. Tiffany Michelle (last woman standing in the 2008 WSOP Main Event) learned from her grandfather at a young age while Annie Duke played cards around the kitchen table with her parents and brother Howard Lederer. In most cases women are introduced to the game by a male; whether it’s a father, brother or friend, and we quickly discover that we love the game – in fact we devour it, study and learn and then beat the boys at their own game! People of all backgrounds with vastly different personalities play poker, which is the beauty of the game. Of course there’s a common thread between us girls, and I think the desire to excel at this wonderful game is inspiring, frustrating and ever challenging, reflecting life and its nuances. I’ve never felt intimidated playing against men. I fact, I’ve probably felt more anxious playing in women’s tournaments in Las Vegas and New Zealand, where I sat most of the day next to the eventual winner, who was a lovely lady and excellent player but, boy, was the game tough.
I know a few guys who dread being surrounded by good female players, but us ladies have to do this fairly regularly and I think that is a good thing, maybe even helps us. It is a widely accepted fact that multi-task better than men, and I think this is a definite advantage at poker. And as more and more women play poker, we are staking a claim to the play with the best of them. We are finding there are many opportunities in poker and big money to make, if that is your goal. I am a big believer in the power of your mind and your thoughts.
Top 10 females by tournament earnings Kathy Liebert (USA) USD $5,339,173 Annette Obrestad (Norway) $2,803,890 Vanessa Rousso (USA) $2,621,261 Jennifer Harman -Traniello (USA) $2,522,840 JJ Liu (USA) $2,190,467 Annie Duke (USA) $2,157,246 Liv Boeree (UK) $1,993,399 Sandra Naujoks (Germany) $1,778,583 Vanessa Selbst (USA) $1,700,798 Mimi Tran (USA) $1,496,853 Did you know? Barbara Enright is the only player to have captured two WSOP ladies titles and in 1995, she became the first (and so far only) woman to have reached the final table of the Main Event, finishing fifth
I manifested into my life all my success with poker using these techniques. I put pictures on the walls, I made CDs to listen to while I’m playing and I made a list of goals and just went after them. I also studied the game 24/7. Some women are happy to play just for fun and that is great too. If you decide you want to take it a bit more seriously, you can. If you want to make a splash on the big stage, find out what major tournaments are coming up and how you can play. Find out what satellites are available, make a plan, write out your goals and just go for it – believe you can do it! So many more women are taking the jump from social games of serious poker tournaments and doing really well. 2010 has been a great year for women in poker. Annette Obrestad, who won the first WSOP Europe Main Event in 2007, jump-started the year at the Aussie Millions making the final table of the main event and winning a preliminary event. Then in March my hero Annie Duke, won the National 2010 Heads-up Championship. The next month law student Vanessa Selbst won the NAPT Mohegan Sun title for a first prize of USD $750,000. This was Vanessa’s fourth major title after her 2008 WSOP bracelet in the $1500 Pot Limit Omaha event and back-toback titles at the World Poker Finals at Foxwoods. Only a matter of days later Liv Boeree became the third woman to have captured a major title with her victory at EPT San Remo. It is only a matter of time before one of us is up on the world stage accepting the bracelet as the first female to win the WSOP Main Event! Will it be you?
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ending the confusion of sidepots Calculating sidepots is an aspect of poker that baffles many new or inexperienced players (especially after a few drinks). Shuffle’s own Landon Blackhall says forget the calculator – count ’em up; split ’em up, there’s nothing to it!
to bluff or not to bluff
There are no hard and fast rules regarding bluffing or betting into sidepots. If you play online poker tournaments, or live tournaments, sometimes you’ll have one player all-in while others in the pot still have money left to bet. Any additional betting goes into a side pot, and the all-in player is not eligible to win that pot. Suppose players A, B, and C are in a pot together. A and B start with 1000 chips and C starts with 100. All of C’s chips go into the middle before the flop, so C is all-in and there is no money in the side pot. A and B are the only ones who can bet, and they check the flop and the turn. On the river, A has a dreadful hand – he can’t even beat the five cards that are on the board. A bluff here is a horrible play. At best, B will fold, but C can’t fold because she already is all-in. Since A has a horrible hand, C will win and collect the pot. Player A is risking being called by B and losing, when there is no way to benefit by betting.
ne thing that I have come across in my travels while running and reporting on poker tournaments is the endless looks of pain and discomfort on players’ faces when it comes to calculating sidepots. Rather than calling the tournament director to give them a hand, they sit there helplessly trying to figure it out for themselves, even resorting to breaking out the calculator on their mobile phone. Fear not, help is at hand! The main thing to remember about sidepots is that you can only win up to the value of what you put in. So if you’re all-in for 200 in chips, you’re only entitled to win up to 200 in chips from everybody else. That’s the easy part. The hard part is making sure it’s all correct. There are two ways of doing this. The first way is to figure out the total amount of chips going into the main pot. Let’s say the blinds are at 100/200, with four players. Before the flop the player in first position raises to 600 all-in. The player on the button re-raises to 2000 and both the blinds call. All you need to do here is multiply 600 by four (which equals 2400), put that into the main pot and move the remainder aside to form the sidepot. Easy! The second way is to do it the other way around – work out how much is going to go into the sidepot. Using the above example again, we know that there are only three out of the four players contesting for the sidepot. The remainder from each called bet is 1400 in chips, so multiply that by three (which equals 4200) and that’s your sidepot. What you may have noticed it seems so much easier to do it the first way, but don’t just stick to one formula! There are times where the second way will work better than the first and vice-versa. You may even have to resort to a combination of both to work out multiple sidepots.
The best way to practice your sidepot skills is to set up random amounts of chips in a random number of seat positions at a table. Position the dealer button on one of the stacks, then post the blinds as normal. From there, place random bets and allins from some or all of the seat positions. Use denominations of 100s and 500s to begin with. Once you are comfortable, incorporate 25s and 1000s. Never, under any circumstances, use a calculator! It’s only going to hinder your progress. Dealers at casinos are required to compute everything mentally in order to keep the game moving quickly and efficiently. Remember, it is over time and practice in which you will develop the speed. Once you have mastered the art of sidepottery (is that even a word, oh well, it is now!), you will amaze and astound your tablemates at your next poker game – though they may have their heads still buried in their mobile phone calculators trying to work it out.
Well known poker reporter and former croupier Landon Blackhall now heads up the Shuffle team. He’ll be combing the rulebook and dealer’s guide for tips to ensure you’re well equipped when you take your seat in an APL event.
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What are you “telling” me?
We utilise many of the skills that make a great poker player every day. In this edition of Shuffle Academy, we look at the importance of tells and how to practice spotting them in every day life.
Caro, the king of tells
he most subtle behaviours of a person under duress can indicate much more than what typically meets the eye. Is a person pushed for time? Watch how often a suspect looks at his watch – something is about to happen. Does he walk on the inside or the outside of the sidewalk – he’s hiding in the open. How often is he blinking his eyes – he is nervous. Does she eat at the same time every day – the person is regimented. These cues give insight into the personality and, more importantly, the future behaviour of these individuals. For the casual observer, these simple actions don’t mean much, but put the pieces together and you’ve solved the puzzle. Being an acute observer is part of how we learn. Furthermore, we learn from the experiences of others. No matter how we learn the information, we have to retain it, master it and learn to apply it appropriately to alternate situations. Many times we forget what behaviour patterns we’ve observed or later misinter-
pret those behaviours. But you may notice that the most successful poker players have excellent memories. Learn the behaviours that tend to reveal strength, weakness, doubt, etc. Remember that in poker you will see behaviours that show strength and commitment, behaviours indicative of being dubious or marginal or behaviours indicative of weakness. Additionally, there are behaviours that indicate intentions that are positive (reaching for chips on the flop) or that indicate you are going to fold eventually (the card shuttle – cards are held between the thumb and middle finger or shuffled back and forth on the felt). So now you have read the content and started a list of behaviours. Wait, what? Make a list? Yes. If you want to remember the information, read it and write it down again. The next step is to validate those behaviours. Ready to hit the poker tables? Not so fast! Poker players make the same mistake over and over: they wait to get to the poker room to observe tells. But the majority of tells indicative of confidence, comfort, discomfort, etc, you will see in everyday life and not just the poker rooms. We don’t have different work tells, home tells and then poker tells! When you show displeasure at the airport over a missed flight you don’t have a second set of behaviours for when you miss the flop with a big hand. Don’t misunderstand my intentions and believe that there aren’t unique behaviours associated with betting, position, and chips, but everything else you can begin to validate
outside of the poker room. The advantage of learning to observe outside the poker room is that you learn to pick up on tells quickly so that later you don’t have to think about them while playing. Everywhere you go you’ll notice that someone is non-verbally telling a story. Once you take your seat, every minute should be dedicated to collecting intelligence about your opponents. Collect information as to how experienced they are, how they sit, how they react, how much territory they claim on the felt, which behaviours they repeat, what they do to deal with stress, etc. Slowly you’ll build up an intelligence base on each player to help guide you. The ability to read people from head to toe, without doubt, is attainable. You can do it; it just takes practice. Observation is a perishable skill, and you will play as you practice. What are the rewards of mastering the art and science of body language, of reading tells accurately? Ask any bracelet winner; he or she will tell you.
Known as the ‘Mad Genius of Poker’, Mike Caro penned the best book ever written on tells, not surprisingly titled Caro’s Book of Poker Tells. Caro’s fourth law of tells is one of the most succinct, but also one of the most accurate; “a trembling bet is a force to be feared”. So if you see a player who can barely hang on to a handful of chips as they prepare to throw them into the pot, steer clear. Another of Caro’s laws states “beware of sighs and sounds of sorrow”. Players will try to throw you off the scent by bemoaning their luck despite a pair of aces or kings sitting comfortably in the hole. And when a player start paying more attention to the footy scores than their hand, it’s also a warning sign. Conversely, the player who looks overly interested in the result of your decision to bet is probably hoping like hell that you’ll throw the cards away.
a ca u M The world’s true gaming capital
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KnowtheDeal ings from Greet
As much as he loves the annual trip to Las Vegas, Sean Callander is a big fan of Macau. And for poker players eager to mix a holiday with some time at the tables, it’s well worth considering.
s members of TeamAPL will attest, Las Vegas is a “must” on any poker player’s list of ultimate destinations. As it should – it’s the spiritual home of poker and the city that hosts the World Series of Poker each summer. There are scores of poker rooms, many of which are home to the best players on the planet. But closer to home, there’s another awe-inspiring destination at all poker players should consider. Best of all, it’s closer than Vegas and, in poker terms, likely to be a more profitable than a trip to the Nevada desert. Macau is often called as the “Las Vegas of the East”, and for good reason. More gambling dollars flow through the doors of Macau’s 30-odd casinos (approximately USD $7 billion each year) than any other gaming destination on the planet, including Vegas. Despite the role that the casino industry plays in both cities, the similarities between Macau and Las Vegas pretty much end there. Situated about 60 kilometres southwest of Hong Kong, Macau consists of a small portion of the Macau Peninsula plus the islands of Taipa and Coloane. More than 500,000 people live in an area of less than 30 sq km, making Macau the most densely populated territory in the world. Most visitors to Vegas arrive via air or across the Mojave Desert on Interstate 15. In contrast, the majority of Macau’s tourists journey via high-speed ferry (or helicopter for the lucky few). The outline of the bridges that link the mainland with Taipa, the soaring Macau Tower and the remarkable lotus-flower shape of the Grand Lisboa Hotel slowly emerge from the haze to create a spectacular vista for travellers arriving via water.
Macau also provides visitors with a unique blend of Eastern and Western cultures, as it was China’s first and last European colony. Portuguese traders first settled in Macau in the 16th century and subsequently administered the region until the handover on December 20, 1999. Not even four years have passed since the first No Limit Hold’em poker tournament was played in Macau. Eager to spread its alphabet soup of poker tours across the planet, PokerStars included Macau on the first season of the Asia Pacific Poker Tour. After two years at the Grand Waldo Hotel and Casino, PokerStars has moved its base from Taipa Island into the heart of the city to the Grand Lisboa Hotel and Casino. Known as “PokerStars Macau”, the poker room at the Grand Lisboa is billed as “the largest in continental Asia” with 33 tables. Tournament series such as the Macau Poker Cup are held every two months, and the room remains the venue for an APPT event each year. But the beating heart of Macau poker isn’t tournaments; it’s cash games, and some of the wildest action you’ll find anywhere on the planet. The best of the games are at Wynn Macau. For those who’ve visited Wynn in Vegas, this property will look familiar – it’s basically a shrunken version. But Wynn’s 11 poker tables play host to some of the hottest action in Macau. Indeed, you’ll regularly find some of Australia’s best cash players grinding away in some crazy games here. However, the bar has been raised with the opening of the new Hard Rock Poker Lounge at the spectacular City of Dreams property on Taipa Island. The Hard Rock Poker Lounge boasts a fully integrated bar and lounge facilities along with nine
tables. This will be the host venue for the Asian Poker Tour Macau event in November. For APL players looking to combine a holiday with some poker, Macau is worth consideration – great restaurants, world class hotels, and a generation of poker players who will overplay pocket eights every time!
• The Macau Peninsula is dominated by Guia Hill, which offers stunning views of the Pearl River Delta and the surrounding islands of Macau. Why not take a cable car to the summit to take in this unique vista of Macau. • There are more than 20 historical and architectural sites in Macau’s small city centre. If you’ve only got time for one make it the A-Ma Temple, on Macau Bay. Built in the 1500s A-Ma is the oldest temple structure in Macau and the city’s name was taken from its title. • Adrenaline junkies won’t be able to go past Macau Tower without trying at least one of the death-defying activities on offer. The 338m-high structure is the only place in the world where the public can climb to the very top, via 100m of vertical ladders on the tower’s mast. The tower also boats the world’s highest bungy jump platform at 233m.
Switchin’ it up
How to avoid “brain farts” at the poker table
Having recently returned from the WSOP where his team once again turned in some impressive results, world renowned poker mental conditioning coach Jamie Glazier knows that event the best players in the world can suffer mental fatigue.
ith the growth of the APL over the past five years and the amazing opportunities that the League offers to play events with huge prize pools, this creates a new obstacle for the social/part-time poker player. That obstacle is what is called the Multi-Table Tournament (MTT). Many players just starting out may have sampled poker tournaments via shorted Sit ‘n’ Go single-table tournaments, with relatively short stacks and not much room for mistakes or creativity. MTTs are the polar opposite to SNGs. One mistake I commonly see and hear from players making the step into MTTs is the mental fatigue, which makes them victims of what I like to call the “Brain Fart”. The BF results when your “mental battery” is running low on energy and therefore you play a hand without being conscious of each decision that needs to be made. Once you see all your chips being shipped to another player, you suddenly wake up from the nightmare and wonder what happened. For most players starting out in MTTs, this seems to be a common occurrence until they actually experience enough BFs to condition their mind to become stronger and focus late in the day to play optimally and leave the BF at the door. So how do you convince your brain to perform optimally late in the day without having to experience those horrible BF moments that eat away at your chips and your confidence like a cancer out to kill your poker career. Think of your brain as a light bulb. Each light bulb, just like your brain, has a time limit before it “blows” and is no longer able to function. To conserve the life of the light bulb, we switch it off after use. When we need that light bulb again, we switch it on.
as you feel the cards leave your fingertips, switch off your mind and let it conserve its energy for future hands, as this is the time when a higher level of focus will become more important. If you can begin to take control over your switch, you will begin to see yourself run deeper and deeper in events and have a chance of bringing your “A” Game to the latter stages of MTTs and put yourself in a position for a big score!
Using that analogy, we can also switch our brains on and off when needed, to help conserve energy and ensure consistent brain function at the final table as on the first level of play. To help define each step so we can focus on implementing each step until they become habits, we need to create what are called “triggers” to help program our minds to switch on and off when needed. A great trigger to switch on when playing live MTTs is when you get the first card dealt to you and you feel that card slide underneath your fingertips. That can be the trigger to switch your mind on for the upcoming hand, putting everything else that you were thinking or talking about to the side and focussing completely on the hand you are about to play. Your focus will be at a higher level of intensity when your mind is switched on to help you gather as much information about the hand so you can make higher quality decisions. Once that hand is completed and you are ready to fold your cards, the trigger to switch off your mind will be the release of your cards. As soon
• If you want to learn more about how to improve your Mental Game, go to www.dare2dream.com.au and join the site for free to access discussion threads and articles on the mental side of poker. Check out Jamie’s 13-chapter Mental Game Video series. Use the Promo Code-APLD2D to receive a $50 discount on the program.
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Ed’s note: Jamie Glazier operates Dare2Dream Peak Performance and Mental Conditioning. Check out his website www.dare2dream.com.au or drop him an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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with caution The dangers of taking a shot at the next level Many Shuffle readers will be familiar with the movie Rounders. In the opening scenes, the grinder Joey Knish spots Mike McDermott holding “three stacks of high society” and makes the comment “You’re making a run at it aren’t you? Rolling up a stake and going to Vegas.” It’s also called “shot taking” and it’s a concept that splits opinion in the pro ranks.
eople have a wide variety of views on “shot-taking” in poker. Basically, shot-taking is playing a game that is bigger than the game you usually play, often with a much smaller bankroll than is considered significant for those higher stakes. Some pros believe you should never do it. Some do it all the time.
In essence shot-taking is actually an important part of progressing as a player, but it isn’t right for everyone. You have to be smart about it. Shot-taking also affects the dynamic of the game, changing the way people play and creating profitable situations if you know what you’re doing. As one pro described, “You might consider eliminating the phrase ‘taking a shot’
from your speech, writing, and thoughts. You are not ‘taking a shot’ when you play a limit higher than you’ve played before. What you are doing is playing a limit higher than you have played before. That’s it. Just like you have done in the past, just like millions have done multiple times. It’s not something to second guess before you even do it. It’s just something to do or
not, like any selection, like folding, or changing seats.” Too many people have it in their minds that they’re just gambling. That isn’t what shot-taking should be about. It is just another decision you make. And just as you should have a good reason to fold or to change seats, you should have a good reason to play a bigger game. Let’s talk about some reasons to take a shot. One reason to take a shot is potentially to speed up your process in moving up in stakes. Another is to get practice playing against better players. A third is to keep you interested and excited about the game. People have all kinds of reasons, good and bad, to take shots. Hopefully you’re smart enough to distinguish the good from the bad. However shot-taking isn’t for everyone. For instance if you were gonna take a shot at 2/5NL, and losing $2k would affect you very negatively either emotionally or financially in your nonpoker life, you shouldn’t take that shot. If you are going to be unable to move back down because it will feel like you are playing for pennies, you shouldn’t take a shot. If you aren’t a favourite in the higher game, you shouldn’t take a shot, unless you just want to practice against tough players and are prepared to pay to do so. You shouldn’t take shots for fun or to gamble unless you are 100% honest with yourself about your motivation and what’s likely to happen. Sometimes you have an extra advantage when taking a shot in a big game. This usually comes from knowing your opponents better than they know you. Let’s say you’re usually a 1/2NL player, and you take a shot in a 5/10NL game with one big fish and one reasonably solid player. Assuming the pro doesn’t know you, you can actually have an edge on him if you play your cards right. Ha-ha-ha. You can make plays based on how you expect he’ll react to an unknown player. He probably won’t assume you will be making advanced bluffs, like a river bluff-raise. Or when a third spade hits the turn and you bet again, he will assume you’re more likely to have it than most regulars in the game. Another thing you should think about is the first impression you make. Since he has no prior knowledge of you, he will usually tend to put too much weight on the first few
things he sees you do. So be very conscious of the hands you show down and how they might affect his thinking about how you play. A very successful tournament pro once said that when he gets moved to a new table, he likes to raise his first hand there, almost no matter what it is. People think, “Wow, this guy just got here and he’s already raising pots. He must be really loose-aggressive.” And most of them take a long time to realize that they were wrong. Sometimes, however, you can be at a disadvantage, both to the rich fish who doesn’t care about the money and to the seasoned player. Most people don’t realise it, or are afraid to admit it, but they play differently when the money means more to them. Some people tighten up preflop. Some see more flops but don’t put their stack in without the virtual nuts. Most people start out tight, and then once they make one bluff, they can’t help themselves from making more. People play more aggressively when they play very high stakes. Aggression is good, but often they overdo it and actually become underdogs in games where they are normally better players than their opponents. A 10/20 player taking a shot at 50/100, who is used to seeing flops with $130 in the pot and giving up with a gutshot, suddenly sees $800 in the pot and decides it’s time to make a move and win that money. The effect increases even more in really big pots. In Malcolm Gladwell’s Blink, he has a chapter discussing stress and adrenaline and their effects on the body. He cites author and former army lieutenant colonel Dave Grossman: “The optimal state of ‘arousal’ the range in which stress improves performance – is when our heart rate is between 115 and 145 beats per minute. Most of us, under pressure, get too aroused, and past a certain point, our bodies begin shutting down so many sources of information that we start to become useless. “After 145,” Grossman said, “bad things begin to happen. Complex mo-Xxx tor skills start to break down. At 175, we begin to see an absolute breakdown of cognitive processing and the forebrain shuts down. Behaviour becomes inappropriately aggressive.” Be warned.
Taking a shot & hitting the target During the 2007 WSOP, online phenom Brian sbrugby Townsend emerged from his shadowy existence to play some tournaments and cash games in Las Vegas. Shuffle’s Sean Callander chatted with Townsend later that year about one of the most famous sessions in recent memory. Sean Callander: How did the cash game that you would go on to play all summer get started? Brian Townsend: I was in Vegas to play a WSOP tournament, and I went to dinner with Brandon Adams and Jorge Arias. They were telling me how people wanted to play really big, and they wanted to play No Limit and Pot Limit Omaha. So I got in touch with some guys who were interested, and we set up a game at Bobby’s Room at the Bellagio. SC: Tell us about the first time you sat down to play. What game were you playing? BT: The first game I played was against a very looseaggressive player who wanted to play high stakes. We both were very comfortable playing No Limit and PLO, so we decided that we would play 10 hands of each, rotating back and forth. The stakes were $500/$1000 blinds with no cap, meaning that there was no maximum amount that a player could put in one specific pot. SC: How big was this game? Do you think it may be one of the biggest games ever played? BT: I think it is one of the biggest poker games that has ever been played. The bigger pots got well over a million. The last pot of the summer, which I lost, had $1.8 million in the middle. We were playing $1000/$2000 PLO and had been playing $1000/$2000 NL with a $400 ante. In the $1.8 million hand, I made a decision to bluff before the hand even began, and I ended up bluffing all the way into Bobby Baldwin, who had the nuts. SC: At your high point this summer, how much money were you up? BT: I think at my high point I was up around $3 million. Then the downswing came, and counting my live and online losses, I think I ended the summer up about $300,000.
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glory TeamAPL takes the Vegas spotlight
For the second successive year, TeamAPL made an indelible mark on the World Series of Poker Main Event with two more players – Phil Faux and Nick Filippopoulos adding their name to League folklore by cashing in the most prestigious poker tournament on the face of the planet. Hang on to your seats as we take you back to the floor of the Rio All-Suite Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas thank to Daniel “Da Milf” Milford’s coverage of the tournament via the Australian Poker League’s Facebook fan page.
Search 2010 Rio in Las Vegas on the d reports live from the gue’s Lea er Pok lian tra Daniel “Da Milf” Milfor Aus the Main Event, LIVE via World Series of Poker . nks Tha . :-) e pag Facebook fan
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are now July 4 at 2.11pm , family and friends TeamAPL members 31 – ing off! tak DING be AR l BO wil TeamAPL NOW nutes flight UA870 gas bound! In 45 mi Ve ht flig ir the ing board See you all soon!
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ked it up TeamAPL group suc July 6 at 12.03pm t night, a very tired Las – With t. ER ffe Bu DINN t ious Spice Marke TeamAPL BONDING dinner at the prestig being PL ing nd mA bo Tea at t, bu gre a urs ed and enjoy rant wait was two ho tau res the A, US in the July 4 holidays in a couple of mins. ess and were seated VIPs got express acc fully be pse of what will hope July 6 at 12.06pm PL had their first glim the mA for Tea ! ue RIO ven E st TH TeamAPL HIT KER ROOM, the ho 13 days the RIO PO interview xt an ne d ha the dy for ea me alr s ho their er Phil Faux ha er. TeamAPL memb World Series of Pok t! ou eye with ESPN! Keep an los, Steve July 8 at 8.42am on, Nick Filippopou ambers, John Rollas Ch vid Eid, Robert SylDa d – on 1C ym Y WSOP DA tian, Mona Isaac, Ra ris Ch ith Ke , on er, Justin Tall, ers McHugh, Aaron Pet umani, Jimmy Aschn yne Bell, Michael Do Wa , PL members mA sud Mif Tea r el ou ha vester, Mic x and Ben Aldons are Fau illip Ph w, Lie r Hartley Ling, Arthu on Day 1C.
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FlopShot Search Daniel “Da Milf” Milford reports live from the Rio in Las Vegas on the 2010 World Series of Poker Main Even t, LIVE via the Australian Poker League’s Facebook fan page :-). Thanks.
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July 8 at 9.01am SHUFFLE UP AND DEAL! The 2009 WSOP Main Event Champi on, Joe Cada (also the younge WSOP World Champion) has st officially announced “shuffle up and deal” to get the even way! t underJuly 8 at 12.06pm TeamAPL MEMBER ELIMINATED – We’ve unfortunately had our first victim of the WSOP Main Event. Keith Christian has bust ed out. His pocket kings wer e behind when he ran into aces with a flop of As 10s Ad, Keit , and h was heading home early.
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July 8 at 12.18pm TeamAPL ON FEATURE TABLE – OMG! TeamAPL member John Rollason has found himself on the feature table with Ultimate Bet Poker pro Phil Hellmuth. 79-year-old Rollason, who won 2009 August Pro Open has fulfi the lled many poker players’ drea ms by going head to head with “Pokerbrat” himself! the July 8 at 12.22pm TeamAPL ELIMINATION – Ano ther member of TeamAPL has been eliminated from the Main Arthur Liew has bowed out with Event. pocket kings. Arthur re-raise d from the cut off with kings, folded to the big blind who jam action med his stack in, Arthur cont emplated for quite some time ever, with more than 75% of , howhis stack in the middle he mad e the call. Aces in the BB sent to the rails. Arthur July 8 at 3pm TeamAPL ELIMINATIONS – We’ ve lost a couple of players in the dying stages before the brea Michael Mifsud and Raymond k! Eid have both hit the rails on sick beats! Michael flopped qua and was back doored by 9c 7c! d 5s The board came 5d 5c 6h 8c 6c – BACK DOOR STRAIGHT SO SICK! FLUSH! July 8 at 3.46pm TeamAPL ELIMINATION – Ray mond Eid was sent to the rail holding an ace high flush! How way Michael was eliminated – ? Same BACK DOOR STRAIGHT FLUSH!
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July 8 at 4.04pm TeamAPL ELIMINATION – Way ne Bell has hit the rail. Wayne was left short stacked after King called down his Aces and hit s a King on the river. Wayne look ed down at Ad 2d and shoved 4000. Cut off woke up with Ace his s and the rest is history! Wel l don e to the guys who have unfo tunately been eliminated – they rhave all been knocked out with fantastic hands! They have don the APL and the country prou e d! July 8 at 4.08pm TeamAPL CHIP COUNTS – Step hen McHugh - 15,100, Ben Aldo ns - 37,800, David Chambers 33,700, John Rollason - 54,0 00, Nick Filippopoulos - 42,9 00, Aaron Peterson - 37,550, Isaac - 28,000, Robert Sylveste Mona r - 20,550, Michael Doumani - 55,250, Jimmy Aschner - 46,6 Justin Tall - 32,000 , Hartley 00, Ling - 24,000, Phillip Faux 73,775.
>>> Turbo fact – James Akenhead is a member of a poker posse known as the Hit Squad, along with brothers July 8 at Sunny and Chaz Chattha, 5.56 WSOPpm bracelet winner Praz Bansi, Jim Kerrigan and Karl Mahrenholz >>>
TeamAPL RESULTS – 14 out of the 18 players that started day 1C have survived and are through
Spring 2010 Spring 2010
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ol. in Event prizepo m d the WSOP Ma ce un al no fin e an Th st July 9 at 11.52a ju ck Effel has e $68,798,600! PRIZE POOL – Ja pool to a massiv ize ENT pr EV e th IN MA ing P WSO 7319, bring r grabs. ber of players is of $19,263 up fo The official num with a minimum sh ca ay aw lk wa 747 players will eak! Ron nds after the br ped out in two ha wi rt Ron en hu be nd s July 9 at 4.16pm ha ha at 6-9-J board. Th no! RON WILSON 0Oh J-1 – a on hit 2 d ATION 9s an IN made the call TeamAPL ELIM o battled pocket ck when his KQ with A-8s. A-6o sta nd SOP. k W ha 28 xt 10 ne his 20 e of ry th lost 19k ed in the ve at the Rio for 9k which he mov n’s journey here Ro d de en er and left him with riv and flop a blank turn pair on a A-2-6 y that started toda d eight of the 13 h an ug 1D ro y th Da r ing July 9 at 5.17pm fo L members mov the end of play tal of 22 TeamAP – Woohoo! It is to a 1D Y to DA us s OF ing END That br rough to Day 2! will now move th C! TI AS NT FA to Day 2! That’s by Hart nd - 41,450, To , Malcolm Shortla 00 62,000, ,0 38 len July 9 at 5.25pm is Al ck rry Y 1D average sta Ho - 27,000, Ke l DA – ae S ch Mi , hard 25 COUNT ht ,6 TeamAPL CHIP orge Apat - 51 e guys who foug rd - 36,650, Ge tulations to thes na ra My ng vid Co . Da 00 , ,9 00 - 52,0 ngden - 15 107,000, Tom Lo Jade Tornquist . 2B y Da in s seat and deserve their namAPLers will co am ent. 14 of our Te Ev in e, Ma ac Gr 10 a July 10 at 6.20 20 m r Day 2A of the footsteps of Em y has started fo 3 and follow the WE’RE BACK! Pla al to make Day go ar. eir ye th t th las wi ey here who all cashed tinue their journ and Charlie Elias ey Iv aig Cr , eim Jonathan Werth first lt just after the am a screeching ha to e of the m lf co ha s July 10 at 6.58 a ha d P an rtley Ling’s WSO r the first hour fo Ha – ad de his rd ATION ca ed IN ov ard. Ling m TeamAPL ELIM g who has been on a King high bo t the best of Lin two ir go pa ed n p pp tio to flo tra o ed us pp wh Fr flo break. der Corwin Cole the button and lea on ip 9s ch t Kd en m lle ca na ur day. Hartley d against the to d himself behin stack in and foun t Hartley! pair. Great effor
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July 10 at 7.16am TeamAPL ELIMINATION – Stev e McHugh has been railed whe n his A-Kc ran into pocket Queens. Steve was short stac ked with 9,000 the whole beg inning of Day 2 and A-Kc was the only hand he had pick ed up. Steve, unfortunately has come to the end of his WSOP journey, however, like everyone else who has been eliminated – he has fought hard and has done his country and the APL proud! July 10 at 7.52am TeamAPL ELIMINATION – Dav id Chambers has hit the rails by a very good, or very bad call, depending who you ask. Player in the ‘hijack’ raises to 2,200. Dave flats and the rock folds. Flop comes A-6-2 – the cutoff, snap checks and Dave fires, checker calls. Same thing on the turn and on the river Dave moved 14k in with 9s. He gets called by A-10o and bows out on Day 2A. July 10 at 8.18am TeamAPL ELIMINATION – Mon a Isaac has been railed with A-Kd. Pocket aces has ended Mona’s journey here at the 201 0 WSOP Main Event. A blank heart flop doesn’t help Mona to improve on a straight or flush draw. A rag turn and river puts the last nail in the coffin.
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July 10 at 8.25am TeamAPL ELIMINATION – Ben Aldons raises pre and gets 3 callers. The flop comes K K 6 and Ben moves his 12,000 in, he gets 1 caller with, wait for it, A5d with one diamond on the flop! That’s right, you know what’s coming! Running diamonds gives A-5d the back door flush! SICK!! Ben Aldons would like to thank the BEN ALDONS Support Group for following him on his journey. July 10 at 8.29am TeamAPL member AARON PETER SON had such a great first nigh t here in Las Vegas he was the first hospitalised out of the team. Lol. Aaron decided to run the ‘STRIP’ under the influence and fell ass over end and ended up with 9 stitc hes in his chin … FACEPLANT ON THE CONCRETE!
Mizrachi chases remarkable double The 2010 WSOP Main Event will go down in history as the second largest No Limit Hold'em tournament ever held, surpassed only by the 2006 event. For the second year in a row, the title contenders will be joined by an in-form pro player at the final table, with Michael Mizarchi out to add the "big one" to the $50k Player's Championship title.
nce again, the poker world descended upon the Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada for the 2010 World Series of Poker Main Event. 7319 players from over 90 countries, including 31 representatives from TeamAPL, took to the felt in the hope of becoming the next World Champion. Given that this year’s Main Event field was the second-largest in history, it was always going to be a tough ask for anyone, with many past champions falling by the wayside, including Huck Seed, Phil Hellmuth, Jerry Yang, Chris ‘Jesus’ Ferguson and Joe Hachem (all eliminated in their Day 1 flights), as well as big names like Phil Ivey, Patrik Antonius, Daniel Negreanu and Erik Seidel all falling short of the money. But two WSOP Main Event champions had deep runs this year, with two-time world champion Johnny Chan (1987 and 1988) coming in at 156th place ($57,102) while Scotty Nguyen (1998) finished in 209th ($48,847). Our highest placed Aussie was online young gun Matthew Pearson, who cashed
in 138th place. Fellow Aussies Jackie Glazier, Jonathan Karamalikis, boxing legend Jeff Fenech and 2010 Aussie Millions Main Event champion, Tyron Krost were also among the 747 players to make the money. TeamAPL once again tasted success, with Phil Faux cashing in 577th place ($24,079) and Nick Filippopoulos pocketing $27,519 for his 487th place finish. With Craig Ivey, Jonathan Wertheim, Emma Grace and Charlie Elias’ cashes from the 2009 WSOP Main Event, TeamAPL has now earned more than AUD $300,000 – an incredible achievement! And while Australia was unable to win any bracelets in one of the 56 side events leading up to the Main Event, we were quick to adopt Kiwi Simon Watt as one of our own. The 28-year-old computer programmer from Auckland claimed New Zealand’s first ever WSOP bracelet this year, after defeating online phenom Tom durrrr Dwan in Event 11 for over USD $600,000 in prize money, adding to his 2008 APPT Auckland title. Watt also single-handedly prevented a seismic shift in
the poker economy, with Dwan rumoured to have been involved in sidebets with a number of pros worth between USD $810 million! However the biggest story coming out of this year’s WSOP is that of the Mizrachi family and in particular, Michael ‘The Grinder’ Mizrachi. With the Chip Reese Memorial Trophy already on his mantelpiece after winning the $50,000 Player’s Championship, the 29-year-old American is now the keystone player of this year’s ‘November Nine’ and is guaranteed over USD $2 million in WSOP cashes this year alone. Incredibly, all four Mizrachi brothers (Michael, his twin brother Eric, older brother Robert and younger brother Daniel) cashed in this year’s WSOP Main Event – a statistic that’s unlikely to be repeated. The remaining nine players in the 2010 WSOP Main Event will return in November to the Penn and Teller Theatre, where a new world champion will be crowned. The man to catch is 23-yearold Canadian poker player Jonathan Duhamel, who leads the November Nine with 65,975,000 in chips.
TeamAPL ON FEATURE TABLE – OMG! however, with more than 75% of his stack at the prestigious Spice Market Buffet. With the July 4 holidays in USA, the res- TeamAPL member John Rollason has in the middle he made the call. Aces in taurant wait was two hours but, TeamAPL found himself on the feature table with the BB sent Arthur to something… friends Writeand ggest toVIPs Subeing got express access were Ultimate Bet the rails.teamapl 2010 Share seated inn a couple of mins. Attach: Informatio
Jimmy by pocket Jacks. am has been railed r ne ch July 10 at 9.20 As y m ort stack Jim ATION – Our sh s held through. TeamAPL ELIMIN into pocket Jack TeamAPL HIT THE RIO! n ra d an d A9 th wi in ck sta got his TeamAPL had Thi their first glimpse s 14 Friends Like is here of what will hopefully LITERALLY! David See All be their 8am 6 of 14 g his sorrows … nin July 10 at 10.1 ow dr is rs home for the next 13 days the – David Chambe L COMEDY SPOT Red Bull! RIO POKER ROOM, the host ven- TeamAP his 10th Vodka/ on ng rti po Re e Liv e th th ue for the World Series of Poker. wi L took a big TeamAPL member Phil Faux has Day 2A, TeamAP am last few hours of July 11 at 4.28 e fortunately, th un in t ly, bu te rd na already had an interview with r. They fought ha SULTS – Unfortu ste RE lve 2A Sy Y rt DA be OF END Tall and Ro ESPN! Keep an eye out! Rollason, Justin ! hit. We lost John s, well done boys rd s ca Thi t e ou Lik th ple wi r ke 2,629 Peo po y pla n't you ca See All July 8 at 8.42am 6 of 14 los , Nick Filippopou am terson - 52,200 yers will Pe July 11 at 4.30 pla on 4 ar e A es – Th END OF DAY 2A sive 170,200! as TS WSOP DAY 1C – David Chamm UN a CO on i IP an CH TeamAPL Michael Doum bers, John Rollason, Nick Filip- 24,000, Phil Faux - 139,900 and popoulos, Steve McHugh, Aaron progress to Day 3. Peterson, Keith Christian, Mona 200/400, ns. Blinds were with pocket Quee Isaac, Raymond Eid, Robert Sylvester, July 11 at 6.38am t ou iser d ra l we itia bo In s CHAEL HO ha mes 6c 5c Jh. PhotosMifsud, Wayne Bell, Michael akes the Michael IMINATION – MI e cut off. Flop co m EL th L Ho m . AP ck fro am ts sta Te fla l his ae See All ed the rest of pp s to 1400, Mich po 2 of 86 Jimmy Aschner, Justin Tall, ise re ra be ion to Doumani, sit ly po 0, on mid Ho raises to 6,00 a set. Hartley Ling, Arthur Liew, Phillip Faux makes it 2400 to go, cket Jacks flop po e se to ly on ns ee Qu lls ro d an and Ben Aldons are our TeamAPL call short members on Day 1C. Kings. Mynard, am ils holding pocket ra e call. July 11 at 7.15 e th th s ke hit s ma ha rd David Benyamine N – David Myna o, IO Pr AT es IN ak - Mynard IM St EL wn gh L July 8 at 9.01am TeamAP Full Tilt and Hi . Pre flop showdo 00 moves all in, amine. amine snap calls ny ny Be Be to ich ls wh fal stacked with 50 to -10-6-2. Mynard e top for 14,000 10 th 2er s ov me s co me d ar co yer (AA). Bo SHUFFLE UP AND DEAL! The 2009 Button (22), button pla (KK), Benyamine nded:6 at 12.06pm FouJuly 5 September, 200
WSOP Main Event Champion, Joe Cada (also the youngest WSOP World Cham-
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WSOP $10,000 No Limit Hold’em World Championship final table Seat 1: Seat 2: Seat 3: Seat 4: Seat 5: Seat 6: Seat 7: Seat 8: Seat 9:
Jason Senti (Minnesota, USA) Joseph Cheong (California, USA) John Dolan (Florida, USA) Jonathan Duhamel (Quebec, Canada) Michael Mizrachi (Florida, USA) Matthew Jarvis (British Columbia, Canada) John Racener (Florida, USA) Filippo Candio (Sardinia, Italy) Soi Nguyen (California, USA)
7,625,000 23,525,000 46,250,000 65,975,000 14,450,000 16,700,000 19,050,000 16,400,000 9,650,000
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Daniel “Da Milf” Milford reports live from the Rio in Las Vegas on the 2010 World Series of Poker Main Even t, LIVE via the Australian Poker League’s Facebook fan page :-). Thanks.
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July 11 at 7.23am TeamAPL ELIMINATION – Tom Longden has been eliminated after flopping a full house! How you ask? Tom raised pre to 5000 and late mid flats the raise. Tom holding 10s flopped a book on a 10 7 7 boa rd. Tom snaps and moves 33,0 00 all in, however, gets what he wanted a caller! The caller turns over pocket Qs and spikes a dirty Queen on the river! July 11 at 7.32am 5 TeamAPL MEMBERS REMAIN IN DAY 2B – we’ve unfortunatel y lost 3 players early on in Day 2B (Day 2 is common ly known as the ‘wipeout’ day ).
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July 11 at 8.48am BACK TO BUSINESS – Players have now returned to the even t to continue their mission - make it to Day 3! July 11 at 8.48am TeamAPL ELIMINATION – WA’ s KERRY ALLEN has been flush ed out of Day 2. Kerry moved all in with A-8 suited on an A-6-2 flop but unfortun ately got run down by the flush draw. Kerry fought hard and was only an hour out of Day 3! Well done Kerry!
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July 11 at 4.31pm REST DAY TOMORROW – Team APL and the rest of the tournam ent have a well deserved scheduled REST DAY tomorro w. TeamAPL members, family and friends will enjoy a friendly tournament amongst themselves tomorrow followed by a five star restaurant dinner then the world renowne d Cirque Du Soleil! July 13 at 4.23am 45 MINUTES TO GO! WSOP DAY 3 – Good luck to our eight play ers - Malcolm Shortland, Phil Faux, George Apat, Toby Hart, Michael Doumani, Jade Tornquist, Nick Filippopoulos & Aaron Peterson. See you all at Day 4! July 13 at 6.14am TeamAPL ELIMINATION – Aaro n Peterson has just been elim inated. In the space of 15 minutes, Peterson was on the bad end of 2 massive hands. Aaron flopped a 10-high flush only to be outflopped by a King high flush which took him down to 20,000. Then Aaron got his stack in with A J suited and got called by 6-6. Unfortunately, the 6s held, and Aaron has now come to the end of his WSOP journey.
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July 13 at 8.36am TeamAPL ELIMINATION – Mal Shortland has bowed out of the 2010 WSOP Main Event. Mal re-raised from the button with pocket 9s, small blind wok e up with Aces and ended Mal's survival run. Well done Mal! Great effort! July 13 at 11.25am TeamAPL ELIMINATED – One of our Facebook favourites, TOB Y HART, has been eliminated from Day 3 of the WSO P Main Event! On a super agg ressive table, Toby had to sit and wait for a hand, and whe n he looked down at pocket 10s he moved his short stack into the middle and got snap ped by pocket Kings. Congrat ulations to Toby on a great effort! July 13 at 4.43pm TeamAPL ELIMINATION – In the last five hands of the day, we’ve unfortunately lost Michael Doumani and George Apat! George flopped two pair, Aces and 2s was counterfeited on the river when A-6o spiked a six. Doumani’s flopped two pair Kings and 9s was outdrawn by a set of 8s on the turn. Well done gentlem en! You’ve both been great ambassadors of the APL.
July 13 at 9.45pm UPDATE – once again due to technical difficulties, we were unable to have access online to upd everyon Two mem of posse >>> Turbo fact – Jamesate Akenhead ise. a member of bers a poker known asflyin the Hit Squad, with brothers TeamAPL are g the APL along flag. Phil Faux and Nick Filippopoulos! Phil is sitti ng Praz on just over 115 Sunny and Chaz Chattha, WSOP bracelet winner Bansi, Jim Kerrigan and Karl Mahrenholz ,000 and Nick is sitti ng the best at>>> 85,000. All to these 2 players and may the cards be kind.
TeamAPL NOW BOARDING – 31 TeamAPL members, family and friends are now boarding their flight Vegas bound! In 45 minutes flight UA870 will be taking off! See you all soon!
busted out. His pocket kings were behind when he ran into aces, and with a flop of As 10s Ad, Keith was heading home early. July 8 at 12.18pm
kings, action folded to the big blind who jammed his stack in, Arthur contemplated for quite some time, however, with more than 75% of hisapl stack in the middle he main event news made the call. Aces in the BB sent Arthur to the rails.
TeamAPL ON FEATURE TABLE – OMG! TeamAPL member John Rollason has July 8 at 3pm TeamAPL BONDING DINNER – Last found himself on the feature table with on the 2010 gasHellmuth. Las Ve night, a very tired TeamAPL group sucked Ultimate Bet Poker Phil TeamAPL ELIMINATIONS – We’ve lost a Rio inpro orts live from the rep r League’s rd ke lfo Po Mi an lf” ali Mi str a Au the niel “D it up and enjoyed aDagreat bonding dinner 79-year-old Rollason, who won the 2009 couple of players in the dying stages bevia E LIV ker Main Event, ries of Po rld SeMarket at the prestigious Wo Spice Buffet. August Pro Open has fulfilled many poker fore the break! Michael Mifsud and Ray. ks an ok fan page :-). Th Faceboin With the July 4 holidays USA, the res- players’ dreams by going head to head mond Eid have both hit the rails on sick taurant wait was two hours but, TeamAPL with the “Pokerbrat” himself! beats! Michael flopped quad 5s and was >> Welcolme Photos being VIPs got express access and were ur Dates back doored by 9c 7c! The board came Polls To Info Wall seated in a couple of mins. July 8 at 12.22pm 5d 5c 6h 8c 6c – BACK DOOR STRAIGHT FLUSH! SO SICK! July 6 at 12.06pm TeamAPL ELIMINATION – Another ng… Write somethi member of TeamAPL has been July 8 at 3.46pm Share TeamAPL HIT THE RIO! TeamAPL had nds frie to st gge Su Attach: SugTeamAPL ELIMINATION gest their first glimpse of what Filters to will hopefully be their – Rayation Inform with m o n d 0 40 /2 00 home for the next 13 days 12 of am th the blinds July 14 at 4.55 ce at Level 13 wi cash! the RIO POKER ROOM, the Eid was y 4 will commen Da Founded: 747 players will – al 4 Y fin e DA , th d 13 L an VE ain 2005 LE , m ber re rs ye Septem host venue for the World sent to pla 03 12 ly On ante of 300. Series of Poker. TeamAPL an the rail the RIO is holding at e er member Phil Faux has alph os m m This GO! The at 14 Friends Like ly 14 at 11.58a e pit, screams an ace N! 5 PLAYERS TO ready had anSee interview with Ju All racing around th HAND HAS BEGU e R ar FO rs to ND ec HA dir 14 t G! of 6 OM urnamen ESPN! Keep an eye out! h i g h the moment. To ip riffling! indescribable at d of nervous ch un so g nin afe flush! de e th , ils ra e th m fro July 8 at 8.42am How? has called a very r) cto m Same re 2p Di t .0 en 12 m July 14 at (WSOP Tourna , gut wrenchHHH! Jack Effel , nerve-racking WSOP DAY 1C – David w a y te HH inu m GGG RH 90 a RR on AAAAAR rs are now Chambers, John Rollason, untimely DINNER BREAK!! Playe Nick Filippopoulos, Steve ing DINNER BREAK! e This 2,629 People Lik See All Peterson, McHugh, Aaron 6 of 14 T! HAS BEEN BURS Keith Christian, Mona Isaac, July 14 at 2.34pm – THE BUBBLE HOOOOOO OOOOOO W Raymond Eid, Robert Syl- SHOW ME THE MONEY! vester, Michael Mifsud, Wayne bers for L TeamAPL mem Bell, Michael Doumani, Jimmy July 14 at 2.44pm congratulate AL to our e ne lik do uld ve wo ha L u s for the APL. Yo Aschner, Justin Tall, Hartley Ling, CONGRATULATIONS – The AP or ad ss their ba ed am rn d ea tatives an players have Arthur Liew, Phillip Faux and Ben being such great represen rs proud. These TE te MA or TI pp UL su e d th an ed , friends s – they have liv er tos nn wi Pho Aldons are our TeamAPL mem- company, your family dy ea alr e the WSOP and ar See All of 86on Day 1C. 2bers position here at July 6 at 12.03pmSearch
ran up last hand. His AQ pm minated in the eli and en July 14 at 4.49 rn be tu s e ha th ux on up, but a King ATION – Phil Fa le IN ub IM do EL L a o colr AP wh fo t il am se SHUFFLE UP AND DEAL! The Te tulations to Ph A Q J saw Phil in Event. Congra AK - the flop of Ma st P ain SO ag W e th of 2009 WSOP Main Event Chamux out river sent Phil Fa pion, Joe Cada (also the youngest a brick althy $24,097. lects a he
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The timeof our lives – TeamAPL takes Las Vegas The APL’s Events Manager Simone Musgrave reflects on the adventure of a lifetime alongside TeamAPL in Las Vegas for the 2010 World Series of Poker.
s I sat in the departure lounge of McCarran International Airport in Las Vegas I contemplated the previous eight days and marvelled at what a trip it had been. As someone that worked in the Casino industry for more than 18 years as a dealer, supervisor and pit boss the attraction to Vegas was very real. Standing just outside Planet Hollywood and looking down the strip at The Bellagio, Paris, Ballys and more I, was like a kid in a candy store. I am actually here, the one place I have always wanted to experience. Having a real love of poker, but not a lot of opportunity to play, I was standing in the thick of the WSOP with the likes of Doyle
Brunson (yes, I did speak to him), Joe Hachem, Phil Ivey, Phil Hellmuth jnr and others. It left me with a real desire to become part of the poker world and to learn and play as much as possible. Now the reason for the trip was to escort our TeamAPLers and watch them live their poker dreams. The first day was nerveracking, not the least bit because “Da Milf” went MIA – appears he cannot tell the time! We finally arrived at the Rio Hotel and Casino with our players for their first day of the World Series of Poker Main Event. With our players finally in their seats and the opening ceremony about to take place the sound of millions of chips clicking was deafening.
Away from the Rio, our team really gelled and had an amazing time with each other on trips to the Hoover Dam, The Grand Canyon, some memorable meals and a Cirque de Soleil show. Let’s tell you a bit about where we stayed – the infamous Planet Hollywood. With its bars, restaurants, gaming tables and shopping there was not much need to go anywhere else. The young Aussie boys claimed “Heart Bar” as their own, and I am sure they will be remembered by the staff for sometime to come! Before I left so many of the team members thanked Daniel and
myself for helping make their trip one of the most memorable of their lives, an experience that would never be forgotten. I would like to take this opportunity to thank all the members of the team for making this trip one of the most memorable times of our lives. Many of us will be friends for life.
To all the members of TeamAPL we cannot thank you enough; you all brought the APL spirit of camaraderie, loyalty and friendship with you on the trip: George Phil Mona Ron Mal Keith David Kerry Nick Hartley Wayne Kenny Tom Arthur
Thanks for keeping Daniel and I company through the many hours of waiting at the Rio and for supporting your team, you were a true captain. You also made a great shopping partner. Your sense of humour had us all laughing constantly, we thank you for your thoughtfulness and I definitely left Vegas a lot less gullible than when I arrived. Thanks for always have a big smile on your face, and don’t forget you managed to get the better of David Williams To Aaron Wow where do I start – party animal extraordinaire, take it easy and better luck next time. You have a great gift for writing and should put pen to paper more often. Your focus is second to none and many players could learn a thing or two from you. Thanks for the laughs, it is great to see someone so young appreciate another country the way you did. Come on get a haircut … said with all the love in the world! You have done yourself proud. There are not many people who could say they have done what you did. Still have those worry beads? They served you well. You are a great kid but I should be lecturing you not the other way around. Maybe we will get to the Venetian next year. I am still waiting on that song. A room with 2000 people and we could still find you. Stay cool and next time we will be stapling the itinerary to your forehead.
Each and every member of the team contributed to make the trip such a great success. We hope to see you at one of the APL Poker Tours or once again on TeamAPL.
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C UP Psarras joins Aussie poker elite
Only days before we went to press, an email came through to HQ – “Hi, my name is Evan Psarras, AKA kevinnok, winner of WCOOP Event 22. Feel free to contact me for a story or blog.” Naturally, we had to give him a call, and as Shuffle discovered, there’s plenty more to this story! Meet just the second Australian player to have captured a WCOOP title!
n 2009, Aaron azzabentonaces Benton created Aussie online poker history when he worked his way through a field of 4581 players in a major online tournament to pocket USD $262,500. It marked the beginning of an amazing year for the former APL player, culminating in his victory in the APPT Grand Final at Sydney’s Star City Casino. Since then, he’s made two ANZPT Main Event final tables and amassed more than AUD $650,000 in live tournament cashes. To 2010, which has been a breakthrough year for Benton’s former housemates, Brendon brendooor Rubie and Rennie steel144 Carnevale. Carnevale took out this year’s ANZPT Adelaide Main Event in February before Rubie picked up the Melbourne Poker Championships Main Event in May. We also can’t forget the successes of Jonathan Karamalikis, who’s collected more than USD $350,000 in tournament
winnings this year alone, including two major Australian High Roller event titles at ANZPT Sydney and the Victorian Poker Championships, plus other big names like Jarred flopnutsonyou Graham, Joel strongplay Dodds, James ANDY_McLEOD Obst, Ben Delaney and Daniel Neilson. Clearly, there’s a growing trend of young online players taking the live poker scene by storm. And should this trend continue, keep an eye out for Sydney’s Evan Psarras. Known online as kevinnok (“I always tell new people I meet that my name is “Kevin, no K”), the 25-year-old APL player recently shattered Benton’s record of the largest online tournament cash by an Australian after collecting USD $340,698.50 from his win in a PokerStars World Championship of Online Poker (WCOOP) event, sending Australian poker forums and social networking sites into a frenzy. For Psarras, it still hasn’t sunk in. “For some reason, other people are
a lot more excited than I am right now,” Psarras said. “Everything’s happened so fast ... I knew I’d been playing well and I had a feeling that there was going to be a big win around the corner – I just never expected it to be this big.” After watching Greg Raymer win the 2004 WSOP Main Event on ESPN, Psarras first took up the game by teaching himself in freeroll tournaments on PartyPoker. “I’ve always been a firm believer in (selfeducation),” Psarras explained. “I’ve never read any poker books or anything like that. I enjoy playing online tournaments and live cash games – I quickly moved on to playing live cash games at Star City and more and more tournaments online.” Psarras’ passion for the game was also shared with his late father, who insisted that he continue following his chosen path, even before he died two years ago: “My father was diagnosed with cancer, so for 14 months I deferred my commerce
degree at university and spent most of my time in between the hospital with Dad and playing poker. My mum’s always been very anti-poker though, she’s always on my back, telling me, ‘If you spent as much time at uni as you did with poker’. I think after this, she might have changed her mind!” Despite his mother’s opinion, Psarras had plenty of support from his brother George and his good friend ‘Panda’ during the WCOOP event: “Panda was railing me over the phone almost the whole way. We developed this strange ritual – every time there was a break, Panda and I would always go to the bathroom, even if we didn’t need to. He told me he’d been closing the bathroom door the same way all day to make sure I wasn’t jinxed!” “George was a pest though. He always kept calling and asking me, ‘you still in?’ and then came in to see
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me just as we got into the top 15 (the minimum payout at that stage was USD $13,350). He pointed at the screen and said, ‘Hey, you’ve got enough for our trip to Europe!’ I said, ‘I’m not looking at the 13k, I’m looking at the (original first prize of) 470k – now get out of my room!’” Psarras maintained a “pretty tight image” throughout the early stages of the tournament: “With the deep structure, I didn’t play many big hands but I wasn’t far behind the average stack by the end of Day 1,” he recalled. “From Day 2, my stack never went below 50 big blinds ... when we got down to six tables, I opened them all up and started taking notes and I found that most of the players were really aggressive. They were knocking each out pretty
quickly, so I didn’t have to do much until the final table – and though I was the short stack, I still had over 50 BBs.” “I then got really lucky against MISHELA (fellow Australian player Mishel Anunu). I’d noticed earlier that he’d raise or shove with small pockets UTG and he’d knocked a few players out hitting sets on the river, but in one of the first hands on the final table he made a standard raise UTG; I looked down at pocket tens so I just flat-called. He bet three-quarters of the pot after the flop, I shoved and he snap-called with pocket aces, but I hit a ten on the river and doubled up!” “From there, players just started dropping out again so I sat back and waited. When we got down to four-handed we proposed a deal but skylarsash rejected and
ironically he was the next to go. "Then, after the three-way chop I thought, ‘I can relax now, just go for it and try to win the title’. Once I doubled up through AlwaysFelted, I just ran over them and took it down.” With the WCOOP bracelet now safely around his wrist, Psarras is looking forward to playing live events, but not before he finishes his studies: “I’m going to wait until I get my degree, then head over to Europe next year – with George, of course – and maybe play some of the smaller events in the WSOP as well. In the meantime, I’ll keep playing online and I’ll certainly play a few more WCOOP tourneys ... you never know, by the time you print this, I might have won another bracelet!”
Big buck$ – 10 of the best Aussie online scores •Evan kevinnok Psarras (September 14, 2010) PokerStars WCOOP Event 22, $530 NLHE (2-day event) 1st: $340,698.50
A proud poker family Evan is not the only Psarras family member who’s had success in poker – his brother, 27-year-old George Psarras, is a standout player in the APL ranks, chalking up more than 23 wins in and around the St.George-Sutherland Shire region since 2006, plus two deep runs in back-to-back State Finals that same year. George finished in third place the first time, narrowly missing out on a seat into the WSOP Main Event, but followed it up with a stunning victory three months later, taking home AUD $10,000. And although Evan has moved on to playing online tournaments and cash games at Star City Casino, he still relishes the chance to play against his older brother. “APL was the breeding ground for both of our poker careers. I introduced George to poker and we used to play a lot of events together, but as I was still at university and playing more poker online, he’s played far more APL games than I have and he’s done really well,” he said. “Our home games are awesome, but we’re betting into each other so often that everyone else gets out of the way and just let us battle it out!”
• Aaron azzabentonaces Benton (May 18, 2009) Full Tilt Poker FTOPS XII Main Event ($2.5m guaranteed) 2nd: $262,500
• Matthew onmyVplates Pearson (March 8, 2009) TitanPoker $2.5m guaranteed 3rd: $ 200,000 • Jay SEABEAST Kinkade (May 13, 2010) PokerStars SCOOP $1050 NLH Rebuy event (H) 1st: $205,110 • Charles PeepOnTheSly Chua (June 2008) Mansion Poker $1,000,000 Guaranteed 1st: $200,000 • James Andy McLEOD Obst (April 7, 2009) PokerStars SCOOP $3150 Mixed Hold’em $800,000 guaranteed 1st: $ 184,000 • Max s0stndrd Veenhuyzen (March 3, 2008) PokerStars Sunday Million $1.5m guaranteed (prize pool $1,612,600) 1st: $160,103 •Jonathan xMONSTERxDONGx Karamalikis (November 13, 2008) $320 NLHE Full Tilt Poker (prize pool $1,128,387 2nd: $157,084 •Jay SEABEAST Kinkade (January 3, 2009) Full Tilt Poker $750,000 Guarantee (prize pool $837,600) 1st: $147,911.78 •Daniel Kochan Kochan (October 8, 2008) PokerStars Sunday Million $1.5m guaranteed (prize pool $1,647,200) 2nd: $ 134,246.80
Big buck$ – 10 of the best Aussie online scores Spring 2010
WCOOP WCOOP WCOOP WCOOP WCO How Evan’s victory unfolded 5799 players registered for WCOOP Event 22 ($530 NLHE TwoDay Event), which for our locals meant a 4am start on Monday, September 13. Despite the guaranteed USD $3 million prize pool, there was an overlay of more than $100,000 for the 765 competitors who made the money. At the end of Day 1, 209 players remained and skylarsash led them all with 1,243,349 in chips. After a much-needed sleepin, Day 2 of the event got underway on Tuesday at 8am AEST and more than 10 hours passed until the final nine players were decided:
From there, it was all kevinnok. He first disposed of AlwaysFelted after first doubling up through him and then sent him packing in third place when his Ad Qs held up against the Ah 7s of AlwaysFelted on the board of 2c 7h Qc 8h 6c. The chip counts were almost even going into heads-up play, but kevinnok wore PeoplsChamp1 down with sheer aggression and had him outchipped by more than three-to-one before the final hand of the tournament played out. After the flop of 4s Qh 8s, PeoplsChamp1 checked and kevinnok led out before PeoplsChamp1 check-raised. Kevinnok shoved and PeoplsChamp1 called with Ks 5s for the second-nut flush draw, but kevinnok showed As 10s for the nut-flush draw. The turn and river ran out 10d, 3d, confirming kevinnok as champion!
Final table chip counts Seat 1: Seat 2: Seat 3: Seat 4: Seat 5: Seat 6: Seat 7: Seat 8: Seat 9:
AlwaysFelted skylarsash kendog39 Evan kevinnok Psarras totya0611 O-Totoro PeoplsChamp1 Mishel MISHELA Anunu 7cardspoker
(11,915,385) (4,020,440) (7,893,139) (2,598,932) (6,685,572) (3,675,178) (12,957,596) (4,959,817) (3,283,941)
MISHELA was the first to depart the final table in ninth place. After taking a huge hit to his stack from fellow Aussie kevinnok, he was unable to recover and finally pushed all-in with Ac Ks, but was unable to win the flip against skylarsash’s 9c 9d. 7cardspoker then moved all-in with Jh Js before kevinnok called with A h Kc, with the flop of 10s Qh Kd enough to eliminate 7cardspoker in eighth place. Kevinnok also claimed the scalp of totya0611, sending him to the virtual rail in seventh after they got their money into the middle on a board of 7h 2s 8c 5s. Totya0611 showed 8s 4c and kevinnok turned over 9c 7s, but the 9h hit on the river to give him two pair. Kendog39 was the next to go, falling in sixth place moving allin with Kc Qd, but failed to improve against the As 7s of O-Totoro. O-Totoro and AlwaysFelted then found themselves in a preflop raising war before O-Totoro pushed all-in with Qh 7h. AlwaysFelted called with 9d 9s and O-Totoro busted in fifth place after the board ran out eight-high. When the final four returned from the break, they decided to take a look at the numbers and struck up a deal. All seemed to be on board but skylarsash declined. As luck would have it, skylarsash was eliminated in fourth place after moving all-in with Ks 10c, only to be taken out by AlwaysFelted who held Ah Kh. The three remaining players then settled on a new “chip-chop deal”.
PokerStars WCOOP Event 22, $530 NLHE (2-day event), 5799 entries, 765 players paid 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9
Evan kevinnok Psarras (Australia) PeoplsChamp1 (USA) AlwaysFelted (USA) skylarsash (Canada) O-Totoro (Finland) kendog39 (USA) totya0611 (Hungary) 7cardspoker (Colombia) Mishel MISHELA Anunu (Australia)
$340,698.50* $372,761.03* $352,830,47* $169,500 $127,500 $97,500 $67,500 $37,500 $24,000
*Denotes three-way chop agreement. All amounts are in USD; report courtesy of the PokerStarsBlog
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WA celebrates its first APL Main Event champion Western Australia could be considered an outpost of the Australian Poker League. Although WA is our largest state, the APL community is relatively small compared to other states. Regan Lake was the toast of the west after he qualified for the inaugural TeamAPL squad and made the trek to Las Vegas to play in the 2009 WSOP Main Event. That all changed last month when WA duo Khai Nguyen and Danny Breadsell filled the top two placings in the first APL Poker Tour (APLPT) event at the Jupiters Casino on the Gold Coast.
hai Nguyen, a 39-year-old school teacher from Perth, took home $100,000 in cash and prizes after besting a field of 214 players in the first APLPT Gold Coast Main Event. The action kicked off with 105 players taking to the felt for first of two day one flights in the first major APLevent held in Queensland. 2010 APL Player of the Year George Apat, APLPT Sydney third-place finisher BJ Beckett, Queensland APL ambassador Mitch Caton, NSW husband-and-wife team Joe and Nancy Cisca, 2007 APL TOC winner Rodney Davidson and New Zealand APL phenom Natasha Kemara were among
the big names who took their seats. All those players made it through to day two but it was Joshua Schubert of Taree, NSW who finished atop the chip count at the end of the day with 64,800. For flight two, 109 players took to the felt with notables including 2011 TeamAPL member John Azzi, fellow New South Welshmen Derick Hoi and Sasho Ognenovski along with Queenslander Matt Vaughn. Aaron Talot, Andrew Caltabano and Marius Wytenburg were the big movers, but it was Khai Nguyen who emerged the chip leader on 60,300. With 50 players from each flight qualifying for day two, an average stack of just over
20,000 and blinds resuming at 800/1600 (ante 200), chips flew around the felt early on, with almost a quarter of the field eliminated within the first two levels. Nguyen was almost out of the tournament in the early stages, but after eliminating Queensland’s Freddy Fares he maintained his stack all the way to the final table. Rodney Davidson was not so lucky, sent to the rail at the hands of Schubert after his A-J was outdrawn by Schubert’s Q-9 when a nine hit on the flop. Kemara was New Zealand’s last hope but she fell short of the money after first being crippled in an earlier hand and then moving the last of her money into the Spring 2010
apl poker tour middle with A-10 only to lose a flip against George Venianakis’ pocket sixes which improved to a set on the river. The dubious title of “bubble boy” went to Queenslander Frank Marino when he moved all-in on a queen-high board with Q-J but was crushed by Charles Fredericks’ A-Q. Fredericks also sent Schubert packing in 36th place, with the Day 1A chip leader’s pocket sevens cracked by Frederick’s A-8 when an ace spiked on the turn. In a cruel twist of fate, Fredericks bubbled the final table after running his pocket eights into the pocket jacks of George Apat to bow out in 11th place. At least one player from every Australian state made the money, with Neilsa Ilsley one of two Victorians to cash (22nd). Beau Polley (28th) and Adam Clydesdale (26th) were the highestplaced Tasmanians, while South Sydney’s Taryn McCarthy was the highest-placed female, finishing 13th. Shortly before 4pm, the field of 100 was reduced to a final table of 10:
In the second hand of final table play, Alex Kostecoglou ran his A-K into Danny Breadsell’s pocket queens and was crippled to less than 35,000 before moving it in shortly after with A-Q, only to be sent packing in 10th place when he failed to improve against George Apat’s pocket 10s. Nguyen then managed to score a crucial double-up through Breadsell before Sasho Ognenovski was crippled and then felted by Matt Vaughn when Vaughn’s pocket 10s improved to a set on the river against Ognenovski’s A-K. Left with just 2000 in chips, Ognenovski, a personal trainer and bodybuilding champion, moved all-in shortly after with J-8 but Vaughn finished him off with A-J. South Australian video store clerk Steve Pope was then ejected in eighth place after moving all-in for his last 26,000 in chips with 10-9 but was picked off by Breadsell who snap-called with A-9. Fellow South Australian and George Apat followed soon after in seventh place when John Abbott’s pocket 10s improved to a king-high straight against his A-K. Left with just 64,000, the 2010 APL Player
rail in sixth place when Abbott tabled K-9 for two pair. George Venianakis then departed in fifth place – having been card dead for most of the afternoon, he finally made a move with Ah-6h, but despite being in good shape to chop against Breadsell’s As-6s, the board was spread Qs-8s-4c-2d-Js to give Breadsell the nut flush and move him up to more than one million in chips. Incredibly, Breadsell didn’t slow down, continuing to raise and open-shove over and over again, but in one of the rare hands he did fold, Steve Walker and Nguyen found themselves with their money in the middle on a board of 6-5-8-5. Walker tabled J-7 for an open-ended straight draw but Nguyen had hit trips with 5-3. The river bricked out and Walker was off to the cage to collect for his fourth place finish. By this stage, Breadsell held almost half the chips in play, but he handed Abbott a virtual double-up after raising to 200,000 before the flop and folding after Abbott moved all-in for 251,000 and then after raising to half a million in chips, he snapfolded when Nguyen shoved over the top
Seat 1: George Venianakis (NSW) 459,000
of the Year fell to Nguyen when he tried to make a move with 9-5 from the small blind but ran into Nguyen’s J-8 from the big blind. With Nguyen now up to more than 600,000, Breadsell began to turn up the heat on his opponents, raising and openshoving at any given opportunity. His ultra-aggressive and somewhat unorthodox strategy saw the rest of the players shut down and look for better opportunities to get their money in, but not before Queensland lost their last contender after Matt Vaughn moved all-in on a flop of K-3-6-9 with K-8, but found himself heading to the
and gifted his fellow Sandgroper the chip lead. From there, Nguyen took control and waited for his moment, which came when his other two opponents both got their money into the middle from the button and the small blind respectively. Nguyen looked down at his hand and snap-called, showing A-K against Breadsell’s K-7 and Abbott’s A-7. Another ace appeared on the flop and Nguyen knew he had both players well covered. You couldn’t have found a bigger smile in the entire casino.
Seat 2: Danny Breadsell (WA) 234,000 Seat 3: Matt Vaughn (QLD)
Seat 4: John Abbott (NSW)
Seat 5: Steve Walker (NSW)
Seat 6: Steve Pope (SA)
Seat 7: Alex Kostecoglou (NSW) 251,000 Seat 8: George Apat (SA)
Seat 9: Khai Nguyen (WA)
Seat 10: Sasho Ognenovski (NSW) 56,000
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MEET Gold Coast champion Khai Nguyen Shuffle Magazine: Khai, congratulations on your victory – looks like you’ve picked up a bit of cash to retire early!
SM: Any previous tournament results before this, APL or otherwise and how did you qualify for this event?
KN: Well, not retiring yet, but I’m certainly going to keep playing APL and keep on teaching – I’d only ever give it away if I won a million!
KN: Never won a regional final before, but two months ago I did and that’s how I qualified for this event. I won a couple of small tournaments at Burswood and in my regular APL games but nothing like this.
SM: Good plan. You mentioned that you’re a teacher? KN: Yes. I’m 39 and I’m a physics teacher at Chisholm Secondary College. I came to Australia in 1989 from Vietnam – you can tell by the surname! I’m married and have two boys – Kevin (13) and Jeff (11). SM: How did you first get started in poker? KN: About six years ago, I played my first game at Burswood Casino but then I found APL shortly after and just kept playing with them.
SM: How has your experience been up here at Jupiters? KN: It’s beautiful! Beautiful poker room, beautiful staff, the structure was really, really nice and the APL staff were wonderful too. SM: Talk us through a little bit of the final table – your fellow Western Australian Danny Breadsell was showing a lot of aggression but you managed to take the whole thing down in extraordinary circumstances. KN: I had noticed Danny’s style of play; he had been pushing around a lot as he
was chip leader and every time he raised he put in more than enough to put both Steve (Walker) and John (Abbott) all-in. They couldn’t afford to call, so I thought I’d just let Danny keep pushing them around, because I was the only one who could afford to fold and I knew that I’d get him eventually, which I did. SM: Do you think that the APL Poker Tour has a promising future? KN: Certainly – look at me, I can vouch for it! It’s quite big and it’s growing really, really fast. I love the APL and I love the people who play in the APL, so I’ll try to win a ticket to the Melbourne first and see how we go. SM: You’ve also qualified for TeamAPL and the 2011 WSOP Main Event. KN: It’s been my dream for more than 10 years. I follow all the action and watch it all the time, especially Scotty Nguyen, my idol – no relation! I’m hoping to take my family with me, but I know I’m going to enjoy the experience and meet some wonderful people. I do hope that one of our TeamAPL players will make it to the final table!
apl poker tour
APLPT Gold Coast Main Event results How it ended the final hand In one of the most incredible final hands ever recorded in Australian poker tournament history, Khai Nguyen was confirmed as the winner of the APLPT Gold Coast Main Event without a single of hand of heads-up play. Just before 7.30pm, Danny Breadsell moved all-in from the button pre-flop with Ks-7h for 550,000 and was called all-in 245,000 by John Abbott who showed Ac7c. They were both covered by Nguyen who snap-called from the big blind with As-Kd. The board of Ah-6s-10h-8c-2s was enough to end the tournament right there and then and Nguyen was crowned champion, taking home $80,000 in cash as well as a $20,000 TeamAPL package, including a seat into the 2011 WSOP Main Event. Breadsell completed the Western Australian quinella, adding $30,816 to his bankroll while Abbott pocketed $20,330 for finishing in third.
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34
Khai Nguyen (WA) Danny Breadsell (WA) John Abbott (NSW) Steve Walker (NSW) George Venianakis (NSW) Matthew Vaughn (Qld) George Apat (SA) Steve Pope (SA) Sasho Ognenovski (NSW) Alex Kostecoglou (NSW) Charlie Fredericks (WA) William Cooper (NSW) Taryn McCarthy (NSW) John Kanaley (NSW) Marius Wytenburg (Qld) Lou Sciascia (WA) Leigh Harper (Qld) Raymond Braybon (NSW) Craig White (Qld) Scott Sullivan (Qld) Stan Andrews (Qld) Neilsa Ilsley (Vic) Gray Viane (NSW) Danae Lewis (Qld) Tina Elsgood (NSW) Adam Clydesdale (Tas) John Azzi (NSW) Beau Polley (Tas) Anya Hunter (Qld) BJ Beckett (NSW) Bin Yao (NSW) Colin Christensen (Qld) Rino Verussio (SA) Michael Bannah (Qld)
$80,000 + TeamAPL package $30,816 $20,330 $18,190 $16,050 $13,910 $11,770 $9630 $6206 $4173 $4173 $4173 $4173 $4173 $4173 $4173 $2033 $2033 $2033 $2033 $2033 $1070 $1070 $1070 $1070 $1070 $642 $642 $642 $642 $642 $642 $642 $642
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“Wish you were here”: t s a o C ld o G T P L P A Postcard from
The APL took over Jupiters on the Gold Coast for the second event of the inaugural APL Poker Tour. Landon Blackhall and snapper Shannon Morris were there to capture all the behind-the-scenes happenings. Tough gig boys! If there’s one thing that we always look forward to on tour, it’s the parties. Queensland was no exception and the APL threw the players a huge bash down the road at the Platinum Nightclub in Surfer’s Paradise. The Wild Turkey was flowing and the scent of Playboy Fragrances permeated the air as the players and staff let their hair down. DJ Nacho Pop was on deck to throw down some beats, while Australia’s Face of Playboy Sheridyn Fisher and her bunnies treated the crowd to both swimwear and lingerie fashion parades. Just in case you were wondering, yes, the night was awesome – here are some of the highlights.
apl poker tour
If there was more determined to win this event than all the others, it would have been 35-yearold Sydneysider John Abbott. Having started the final table second in chips, he played a solid game but had to endure an aggressive threehanded battle between him, Danny Breadsell and Khai Nguyen before finishing up in third place – a valiant effort considering his ongoing battle with leukaemia. “I’ve just finished treatment and I’ve got tests next month to find out if I’m all clear,” the former machine operator explained. “I’m happy with the result, but I would have loved to have won it – the money will help me though.” Abbott only started playing poker this year but he’s keen to play on for as long as he can and in as many major tournaments as possible. “My experience here at Jupiters has been awesome, just great,” he said. “I think everyone played really well, but now I’m just looking forward to Melbourne – I’ve already got my ticket.”
There was barely a spare seat to be found down in the Jupiters Poker Room as a sell-out field of 80 teams took to the felt for the $132 buy-in Teams Event. The majority of the field were Queenslanders and the final table was an all-local affair, save the duo of APL franchisee manager Clint Dean and Rachel Beard from Western Australia, who finished in sixth place. Jo-Jo Circus (featuring husband-and-wife APL franchisees Ross and Cindy Jones) put on a dominant display, eliminating the first three teams on the final table but two of their regular players, Jazmine Sayeed and Nathan Duffield were quick to catch and went into the heads-up battle against Jo-Jo Circus with a 4:1 chip lead. Despite the field being whittled down to two in under three hours, the headsup battle took more than 90 minutes to complete. Eventually, Duffield openshoved from the button pre-flop with As-2c and was called all-in by Ross Jones who tabled Jd-9d. The dealer spread the board of Ad-8c-10s-10h-Kh, sealing the deal for Jaz and Nathan who took home $2500 and automatic qualification into the next APLPT Teams Event in Melbourne. Jo-Jo Circus received $1500 for their efforts.
Overcoming the odds
Teams turn out in force
Muscle man on the march Sasho Ognenovski earned plenty of respect for his final table finish in the APLPT Gold Coast Main Event although the Sydneysider is no stranger to the sporting spotlight. Since his teens, Ognenovski has been competing as a natural bodybuilder. He recently claimed the biggest title of his career when he took out the ANB Asia Pacific Championships in the men’s under 90kg category. He didn’t need much encouragement to display his impressive frame for the ladies on the rail shortly after his elimination.
Pope’s new religion > Steve Pope turned in a career best result with eighth in the APLPT Gold Coast. He loves his APL and poker in general, and is even thinking about making a career out of the game. “I’m looking for a chance to become an APL tournament director or a dealer at Adelaide Casino. I’m so thrilled with my result here that I’ll probably chase a seat for the next APLPT event in Melbourne,” the 34-year-old said. “I loved it here at Jupiters. The best part was on day one when I picked up aces in the small blind and the big blind shoved for 30k over the top and doubled me up I just kept going from there.”
ur p osu d t a hen O
APLPT heads to Crown
Season finale With two out of the three APL Poker Tour events now run and won, the focus now turns to the world-famous Crown Casino in Melbourne for the final stop of the inaugural season.
ontinuing from the success of the Wild Turkey Poker Classic and the Wild Turkey Grand Slam, the APL Poker Tour Melbourne will provide even more opportunities for everyone to take their shot at poker stardom. The staff at APL HQ have been working tirelessly with Crown Casino Director of Poker Operations Jonno Pittock and their team to create an APL Poker Tour schedule like no other. To begin, there is no limit to the number of entries for the APLPT Melbourne Main Event, which is sure to be boosted by the APL Poker Tour Satellites running daily. With a minimum $25 buy-in, it’s a small price to pay to make your dream of playing in the 2011 WSOP Main Event a reality. It doesn’t stop there – on Friday, November 26, everyone will have the chance to secure a seat into the southern hemisphere’s biggest poker extravaganza – the 2011 Crown Celebrating its 13th birthday this year, there is much to celebrate at Crown. Aussie Millions Poker Championship. For only $240, you’ll With the opening of the new 658-room AUD $300 million Crown Metropol, have the chance to rub shoulders with the world’s best Crown is now able to offer guests more than 1600 rooms and suites across without having to suffer through jet lag! the three hotels. The ever-popular APL Poker Tour Teams Event is back Crown Towers is the landmark hotel physically and metaphorically. and like the Main Event, is also uncapped. A special $150 The 39-story elliptical tower contains 482 guestrooms with floor to ceiling No Limit Hold’em open event is also on the cards and if windows and gold-plated taps. that wasn’t enough, the fifth instalment of the Joe Hachem Linked to the Entertainment Complex via an air-bridge is Crown Deep Stack Series begins on the weekend of the APLPT Promenade Hotel, which features 465 guestrooms, including 18 studios and Melbourne Main Event, featuring some of Australasia’s best three suites, the purpose-built Crown Conference Centre, 280-seat Mesh and brightest poker players, including the 2005 WSOP Main restaurant, 80-seat Tonic Bar and The Deck leisure centre with its 25-metre Event champion and Melbourne’s own, Joe Hachem. infinity indoor pool, activities room and two sun decks. Of course, the icing on the cake is the Playboy Fragrances Crown’s new third hotel tower, Crown Metropol, opened in April 2010 with Players Party, featuring Australian Face of Playboy Sheridyn 658 rooms, and at a cost of more than AUD $300 million. The hotel reflects Fisher and the gorgeous Playboy Bunnies, plus the smooth the urban and metropolitan context of the hotel’s design and location. sounds of DJ >>> Nacho Pop.fact With– so much on offer,isthis is one of a poker posse Turbo James Akenhead a member known the Hit34Squad, with brothers Inclusive of 579 hotelasrooms, studios,along 12 spa accommodation rooms, 32 APL Poker Tour extravaganza that you simply cannot miss! Sunny and Chaz Chattha, WSOP bracelet winner lofts Praz and Bansi, Kerrigan andresidence. Karl Mahrenholz >>> oneJim apartment-style
Where to stay at Crown
apl main aplevent pokernews tour
APL Poker Tour Melbourne schedule (Crown Casino, November 24-29) November 24 November 25 November 26 November 27 November 28 November 29
10.10am 10.10am 10.10am 3-7pm 7.10pm 8-10am 10.10am 12.10pm 4.30pm 7.30pm 10.10am 2.10pm 8.10pm 10.10am 2.10pm 7.10pm
APL Poker Tour Satellite APL Poker Tour Satellite APL Poker Tour Satellite APLPT Melbourne Main Event Registration^ 2011 Aussie Millions Satellite APLPT Melbourne Main Event Registration^ APLPT Melbourne Main Event Day 1 Flight 1^ APL Poker Tour Satellite No Limit Hold’em Playboy Fragrances Players Party APLPT Melbourne Main Event Day 1 Flight 2^ JHDSS 5 Opening Event (15k bank) APLPT Melbourne Teams Event APLPT Melbourne Main Event Day 2^ JHDSS 5 No Limit Hold’em (10k bank) JHDSS 5 Teams Event (12k bank)
$25/$25 rebuys* $25/$25 rebuys* $25/$25 rebuys* $240 ($200 + $40) $25/$25 rebuys* $150 ($120 + $30) $340 ($300 + $40) $120 ($100 + $20)# $180 ($150 + $30) $200 ($170 + $30)
* Denotes entry to APL players only # Denotes entry to APL players and staff only ^ Denotes entry to APL Poker Tour qualifiers only
Things to do around Melbourne
Crown, a world of entertainment
While sport is Melbourne’s heartbeat, the city is also recognised for its style and passion for fashion. From high-end boutiques in Collins St, up and coming designers in Brunswick St, Fitzroy or outlet bargains in Bridge Rd, Richmond and Docklands there are a plenty of ways to spend your winnings. One of the best ways to get a feel for this diverse city is by seeing it from 88 floors up at Eureka Skytower. The viewing platform is the highest in the Southern Hemisphere and the only observation deck in the world that takes you to “The Edge”. The glass cube suspended almost 300 metres above the ground is not for the faint hearted, and if you’re brave enough to venture into The Edge make sure you take a souvenir photo home for proof. If you want to taste a genuine Melbourne experience, head to one of the city’s closest beach – St Kilda – to work on your tan. Take a tram to the seaside suburb and stroll along the pier, ride the roller coaster at historic Luna Park and relax with coffee and cake on bustling Acland Street. After dark, sample one of the numerous bars and clubs or catch a band at the Esplanade Hotel. Known as The Espy, the pub has been bringing live music to Melbourne for more than 100 years. You could also visit the Antarctica Penguin exhibit at Melbourne Aquarium at Southbank or be inspired by an exhibition at The National Gallery of Victoria on St Kilda Rd. For more tips to make your Melbourne trip complete, check out www.visitvictoria.com.
Crown Casino opened its doors in 1994 at Melbourne’s World Trade Centre, and in 1997 relocated to the South Bank of the Yarra River as part of an AUD $2 billion development. Crown is the largest and most successful entertainment complex in the Southern Hemisphere and one of the largest in the world. It is visited by up to 16 million people each year and dubbed a ‘World of Entertainment’, Crown lives up to this grand claim with its excellent restaurants (including players’ favourite Nobu), a 14-screen cinema which includes the exclusive Gold Class cinemas (small private screen rooms with food and beverage service and plush recliners), bowling alley, tennis courts and award-winning spa. The newest additional to the Complex is the five-star hotel, Crown Metropol, taking the total number of bedrooms in the complex to over 1600, and comes with its own über-restaurant when Gordon Ramsay spreads his Maze chain to Melbourne. The Crown Poker Room launched with just 21 tables in 1997, three years after the casino opened. Legions of locals have been swept up in the Australian poker boom that was ignited when Melbournian and Crown Ambassador Joe Hachem became the 2005 World Series of Poker Champion, scooping up AUD $10 million in prize money for his efforts. This enormous win, along with the made-for-television poker tournaments, where concealed cameras reveal each player’s cards to the viewer, elevated the game and opened up a player’s-eye-view. Like every other nation on the planet, the popularity of poker skyrocketed in Australia as a result. These contributing factors have seen the Crown Poker Room swell from 21 to 72 tables. Along with a recent licence awarded, takes the total poker tables to 100, making Crown’s Poker Room the largest poker room outside North America.
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How the Aussie Millions came to be It’s every poker player’s dream to head over to Las Vegas to play in the World Series of Poker. Sadly, not all of us will get that chance, but the good news is that we’ve got our own major international poker event to look forward to every year! In this edition of Shuffle we look at the early years of tournament poker in Australia and how the Aussie Millions Poker Championship became the world-class extravaganza it is today.
he Australian poker landscape was vastly different 30 years ago. Poker basically meant five-card draw – mostly for matchsticks around the kitchen table. If someone mentioned “World Series”, you would have instantly thought of baseball, not poker – and you wouldn’t have known where Omaha was, let alone how to play it. Long before Joe Hachem’s WSOP Main Event victory, a handful of dedicated people were regularly crammed into smoke-filled card rooms, playing high-stakes poker games in casinos (both legal and illegal) around the country. In fact, a man by the name of Mark Heffernan won Australia’s very first official poker tournament at the Wrest Point Casino in Tasmania back in 1981. In 1987, the Adelaide Casino established itself as the home of the Australasian Poker Championships, which for many years was considered the most prestigious poker tournament in the region – even 1972 WSOP Main Event winner and poker icon “Amarillo Slim” Preston played there! Casino Canberra was the next property to step up to the plate, and from 1996 to 2002, it host-
ed the National Poker Championships. These tournaments are considered to be the predecessors to the Aussie Millions. In 1998, one year after Melbourne’s Crown Casino relocated from the World Trade Centre to the multi-million dollar Southbank complex, three of Australia’s poker stalwarts – Steve Fox, John Beagle and Keith ‘Bendigo’ Sloan – helped establish a dedicated poker room, which led to the first Crown Casino Poker Championship being played later that year. A field of 74 players took part in the $1000 buy-in Limit Hold’em Main Event, with Australia’s Alex Horowitz winning the title along with $25,900 in prize money. In 1999, the number of players increased to 109, helped by a strong international contingent, featuring 15 satellite qualifiers from the Gila River Casino in Arizona, as well as 1983 WSOP Main Event champion Tom McEvoy. The final table was an allAussie affair, which included Billy ‘The Croc’ Argyros and Sammy Khouiss. Milo Nadalin defeated fellow Aussie Adam Haman heads-up to take down the lion’s share of the $109,000 prize pool.
hand history The year 2000 marked the start of many of today’s Aussie Millions traditions, with the introduction of several high stakes events, as well as moving the schedule to January and a change to No Limit Hold’em for the Main Event. Australia’s Leo Boxell won that year, while fellow Aussie Sam Korman was the last man standing in 2001. The buy-in for the Main Event was raised to $5000 in 2002; John Maver took down the title and the first-place prize of $150,000, defeating a field of 66 players. In 2003, the Crown Casino Australasian Poker Championships officially became known as the Aussie Millions and the Main Event buy-in was raised to $10,000 for the first time, attracting a field of 122 players. The heads-up battle between Aussie Leo Boxell and Englishman Peter Costa was a hard-fought affair, but in the end, the Old Enemy would prevail as Costa took home just under $400,000 for his victory. A field of 133 players took to the felt in 2004 with England’s Tony Bloom defeating America’s Jesse Jones heads-up and took home $426,000 in prize money. In the next two years New Zealanders dominated the Aussie Millions. Jamil Dia became the first person to win a milliondollar prize at an Australian poker tournament after besting a field of 263 players in 2005. Fellow Kiwi Lee ‘Final Table’ Nelson then took it down in 2006, winning almost $1.3 million after conquering a field of 418 players, which included some of the world’s best – Phil Ivey, Daniel Negreanu, John Juanda, Mike Sexton and Antonio Esfandiari – just to name a few. It was also the first year that the Aussie Millions Main Event was televised. In 2007, the Aussie Millions Main Event field skyrocketed to 747 players. The final table had a truly international flavour, consisting of one Australian, one German, an Irishman, a Canadian, two Americans and a Dane. American Kristy Gazes became the first female to reach an Aussie Millions Main Event final table, but in the end it was precocious American Jimmy ‘gobboboy’ Fricke who went heads-up against “The Great Dane”, Gus Hansen – and it was Hansen who emerged victorious, taking home AUD $1.5 million in prize money. In 2008, the largest Aussie Millions Main Event field in history (780 players) converged on Crown and Australia had a great chance to keep the title on home soil, with the final table consisting of four locals. Aussie young gun Michael Chrisanthopoulos, who started with a massive
chip lead but fell agonisingly short in third place. The two foreigners – American pro Erik Seidel and 21-year-old Russian wunderkind Alexander Kostritsyn – were the last two players standing; Kostritsyn emerged victorious, taking home AUD $1.65 million in prize money and the record for the youngest ever Aussie Millions Main Event champion. Finally, in 2009, it was our turn. Though the poker world was not immune from the global financial crisis (only 681 players made the trek to Melbourne), it certainly didn’t make the challenge of winning the Main Event any easier. Joe Hachem sent out a clear message to the local contingent – “get your act together” – and Adelaide’s Stewart Scott answered the call, taking home a record AUD $2 million payday and becoming the first Australian to keep the Aussie Millions title on home soil. This year’s Aussie Millions series proved a huge success, with the Opening Event alone receiving 1143 entrants, making it the largest casino poker tournament field in Australian history. In another first, the public had access to all the action from start to finish, with the Studio 3 nightclub transformed into a made-for-TV viewing gallery. The Main Event final table featured two online phenoms in the form of Annette annette_15 Obrestad and Sorel Imper1um Mizzi, but it was 23-yearold Sydneysider Tyron Krost who reigned supreme, pocketing a cool $2 million for his victory and defeating a field of 746 players. It’s incredible to think that from such humble beginnings, the Australian poker scene has evolved into what it is today. Though the events of 2005 certainly helped things along, we can’t forget those before us who have supported poker in its early years. With an event like the Aussie Millions, the future of the game is assured – and who knows, someday it might be you that becomes the toast of the Aussie poker nation! • Next year’s Aussie Millions Poker Championship will feature 20 events, including the $10,000 Main Event, the $100,000 Challenge and the $1650 Feature Event with Bounties, as well as the ever-popular High Stakes Cash Game series. We’ll have a full Aussie Millions preview for you in the next edition of Shuffle, but if you want to find out more in the meantime, log onto > www.aussiemillions.com.
Fast fact: 2006 Main Event winner Lee Nelson holds the record for the most final tables (11) and most titles (four) at the Aussie Millions.
Big reputations, big bankrolls & big money
The Aussie Millions has a number of unique events on its calendar, but none more prestigious than the $100,000 Challenge. In its sixth year on the schedule, this event remains the world’s biggest buy-in tournament. Each year, the best-of-the-best in tournament poker battle it out with a mixture of cash-game specialists and high stakes gamblers. For some, the AUD $100,000 buy-in is a mere drop in the ocean. Past champions are Dan Shak (pictured), David Steicke, Howard Lederer, Erick Lindgren and John Juanda. In 2006, there were 10 players, in 2007 the field increased to 18 while in 2008 there were 25 contenders. There were 23 in 2009, and 24 entries in the most recent edition.
Aussie Millions honour roll
2003: Peter Costa (UK)
2004: Tony Bloom (UK)
2005: Jamil Dia (NZ)
2006: Lee Nelson (NZ)
2007: Gus Hansen (Den)
2008: Alexander Kostritsyn (Rus)
2009: Stewart Scott (Aust) AUD $2,000,000 2010: Tyron Krost (Aust) AUD $2,000,000
Did you know? Seven WSOP Main Event winners have played in the Aussie Millions Main Event (see below): Dan Harrington (USA) 1995; Huck Seed (USA) 1996; Scotty Nguyen (USA) 1998; Chris Ferguson (USA) 2000; Carlos Mortensen (USA) 2001; Greg Raymer (USA) 2004 and Joe Hachem (Australia) 2005.
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off the felt
Gettin’ caddy stacked One of the great things about the APL is the number of golf clubs that regularly host APL events – Port Macquarie, Campbelltown, Tumut, Amstel, Massey Park, Bulimba and Mollymook just to name a few. Here’s a great way to combine the best of both worlds.
he Shuffle team love nothing more to get out on the golf course, create divots for greenskeepers and generate fear in anyone walking within 100 metres and a 180° radius of our golf ball. But that doesn’t stop us loving a hit around the local course – and even better when we combine a round of golf with poker. Wanna add a little spice to your next putt ‘n’ poker day? The game is called Three-Putt Poker and it is gaining popularity as the game of poker becomes more popular. Now, this game is probably not made for the golfer trying to make it to scratch golf. But if you’re looking to add a little fun to your round you will probably enjoy it. Try this great game with you buds the next time you hit the golf course. The rules of this poker/golf game are set up to improve your putting while still having a good time. When your round begins, the group of players must post an ante. Once this is done and the pot is all square each player will receive one playing card that they will put in their pocket. When a player one putts a hole they will receive another playing card but if that player three putts a hole they must put additional money into the pot. The player that has the best hand at the end of nine holes will win the money in the pot. The whole process starts over again on the back nine holes with the players putting in their ante again. This game might not be for the player that is trying to make the PGA Tour, but if you and your mates are just trying to get out there and have a good time and playing for the fun of it, this is a great way to have fun and change things up a bit. Enjoy.
How it works Example: Three players start the day by putting up an ante of $10 each which makes the pot $30 to start. • Player 1 – one putts twice; three putts twice = + $2 in the pot and 2 extra playing cards totalling 3 cards • Player 2 – one putts 3 times; three putts 4 times = + $4 in the pot and 3 extra playing cards totalling 4 cards • Player 3 – one putts 0 times; three putts 7 times = + $7 in the pot and 0 extra playing cards totalling 1 card • Player 4 - one putts 0 times; three putts 0 times = + $0 in the pot and 0 extra playing cards totalling 1 card The cards are shown after the front nine, player 1 holds 8c-7s-9h, player 2 holds 10h-Kh-2h-3h, player 3 holds Ah and player 4 holds 2d. Player 3 wins the pot ($43) because they hold the best hand, which is ace high. The great thing about the game is that even though you may be the worst putter in your group, you still have the opportunity to win the pot.
p eu s l d oafi phre
Venue profile: VIC
Venue profile: VIC
Venue profile: NSW
Queanbeyan Kangaroos RLFC
1 Matisi St, Thornbury, Vic Contact: (03) 9484 0477, www.furlanclub.com.au
223 High St, Shepparton, Vic Contact: (03) 5821 9822, www.gvhotel.com
APL games: Tuesday nights, registration at 6pm; Sunday nights, registration at 5pm
APL games: Thursday nights, registration at 7.30pm
Cnr Stuart St & Richard Ave, Queanbeyan, NSW Contact: (02) 6297 6222, www.roosclub.com.au
Established in 1957, the Furlan Club is one of the most prominent ItalianAustralian social clubs in suburban Melbourne, but membership is open to all and their numerous bars and function rooms can cater for up to 600 people for any occasion. Have a hit out on the squash courts, play a game of bocce, some soccer or even a round of golf. If you’re not into sport, you could always take part in traditional folk dancing classes and other cultural activities, then tuck into a delicious wood-fired pizza at The Ristorante and relax afterwards with a drink in the Lounge Bar.
Venue profile: NSW
The multi-award winning GV Hotel, nestled in the heart of Shepparton, has undergone major renovations in the past two years and is now the premier entertainment venue in the Victorian Highlands. As well as some of the region’s best dining, you can belt out a ballad with karaoke on Wednesdays, wind down after work with a group of friends with a free platter of finger food while sampling the 30+ beers on tap during happy hour on Friday, or cure that Saturday night fever by dancing the night away to the sounds of Australia’s best live bands and DJs.
Venue profile: SA
APL games: Thursday nights, registration at 6pm
There might not be any APL games in Canberra yet, but our friends in the national capital can hop over the border on Thursday nights and take to the felt at the Queanbeyan Kangaroos club. There’s plenty to keep you occupied, including a massive bar with two huge projector screens, TAB, pool tables, arcade games, 13 beers on tap and heaps of sporting memorabilia. Be sure to also try something from the home-style menu of the Peppers bistro. You might even get the chance to go heads-up with a local celebrity – 2009 TeamAPL member Terry Adams hails from the area!
Venue profile: QLD
Warilla Bowls & Recreation Club
Moreton Bay Sports Club
Jason Ave, Barrack Heights, NSW Contact: (02) 4295 9595, www.warillabowls.com.au
73 Ormerod St, Naracoorte, SA Contact: (08) 8762 2400, www.naracoortehotel.com.au
175 Boundary St, Tingalpa, Qld Contact: (07) 3390 6877, www.mbsportsclub.com.au
APL games: Monday nights (Pro - $11), registration at 6pm; Thursday nights, registration at 6pm
APL games: Thursday nights, registration at 7pm
APL games: Tuesday nights, registration at 6pm; Sunday nights, registration at 5pm
Located 30 minutes south of Wollongong, the Warilla Bowls & Recreation Club is one of the largest bowling clubs in the country, hosting four outdoor rinks and a world-class eight-rink indoor green as well as a fully-equipped gym, tennis courts and snooker tables. After you’ve gone for a roll, indulge in something from the a-la-carte menu at Emeralds Restaurant or go nuts at the all-you-can-eat buffet at the Seaview Restaurant before retiring to one of the 19 three-star holiday cabins overlooking Little Lake. Membership to the club is as cheap as chips, starting from as little as $2 a year!
The Naracoorte Hotel was established way back in 1847 and today not much has changed, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t pass up on visiting this gem just over the south-west border of Victoria. Breakfast is served daily in The Atrium and Billy Mac’s Bistro caters to all ages and tastes, with an ever-changing menu featuring five new items weekly. To wind down after a bad beat, we recommend having a couple of Coopers out in the Willow Beer Garden before a game of pool in the Sports Bar. Accommodation is also available, starting from just $89 a night.
Home of the Brisbane Wolves Football Club and the Wynnum-Manly Sea Eagles Cricket Club, the Moreton Bay Sports Club is located just off Wynnum Road and only half an hour from the Brisbane CBD. The hearty meals from Spinnakers Restaurant are available for lunch and dinner daily and with nothing on the menu over $23, it’s an ideal and costeffective way to fuel up for a night of poker. And after you’ve had a beer or three to celebrate your victory at the tables, you can save yourself even more of your hard-earned by catching the courtesy bus back home.
apl venue review
CASINO PROFILE: QLD
Jupiters Casino Address: Broadbeach Island, Gold Coast QLD Contact: (07) 5592 8100, www.jupitersgoldcoast.com.au Poker: The Jupiters Poker Room is located in the basement level of the Jupiters Casino complex, open 24 hours, seven days a week. For all event details, check out the casino website. The Jupiters Casino first opened its doors to the public in 1986, but only hosted its first major poker tournament in 2009, sharing the honours with Brisbane’s Treasury Casino for the ANZPT Queensland event. Fast forward to 2010 and it’s clear that Jupiters has put up its hand to become the poker destination in the Sunshine State, having hosted this year’s ANZPT event and, most recently, the second event of the APL Poker Tour. With 16 poker tables, a private lounge and bar area, as well as all the creature comforts you’ve come to expect in any world-class poker room, you’ll feel like a high roller (it was the old high roller’s room). Don’t let that stop you from exploring the rest of the complex – there’s so much to see and do, with more than 70 gaming tables, 1300 poker machines, seven restaurants and five bars, plus plenty of live entertainment at the Jupiters Theatre. Be sure to also get out and about – head to Surfer’s Paradise and check out the thriving club scene, indulge in some retail therapy at Pacific Fair, take a scenic trip around the city on the monorail or just head on down to the beach for some sun, sand and surf. When you’re all done, head back and relax poolside with a massage before ordering room service (the club sandwich is highly recommended) and settling down for a well-earned rest in one of the 593 hotel rooms. So, what will you get up to?
Venue profile: NZ
Porirua Club 1 Lodge Place Porirua, NZ Contact: (04) 237 6143, www.poriruaclub.co.nz APL games: Tuesday nights, registration at 6pm; Sunday nights, registration at 5pm
Venue profile: TAS
It’s a 20-minute drive north of Wellington, but it’s worth it. The Porirua Club is one of New Zealand’s premier APL venues and offers a diverse range of activities and entertainment options. Try your hand at some classic card games like euchre or cribbage, or play a game of snooker or darts. If staying inside’s not your thing, you can play rugby or softball with the locals. You can also join in for a fishing trip out in Porirua Harbour, but if you don’t end up catching anything, at least you can always find something good on the dinner menu at the Eastwood Bistro.
The Brass Monkey Hotel
4 Cambridge Rd, Bellerive, TAS Contact: (03) 6244 2333, www.waterfronthotel.net.au
Cnr James & Williams Sts, Northbridge, WA Contact: (08) 9227 9596, www.thebrassmonkey.com.au
APL games: Wednesday nights, registration at 6pm
APL games: Tuesday nights, registration at 6pm
Venue profile: WA
Bellerive may be home to one of the most famous cricket grounds in Australia, but it’s also the home of the renowned Waterfront Hotel, which is only minutes from the centre of Hobart and perched right near the crystal clear waters of Kangaroo Bay. Light, breezy and spacious, you’ll feel right at home as you relax with a cocktail at cBar with your friends, or dining on mouth-watering seafood and sipping a glass of Tasmanian Riesling in Sails Restaurant before trying your luck on the latest gaming machines in the Oasis Gaming Lounge. A slice of heaven in the Apple Isle!
It’s not your typical pub, but then again, The Brass Monkey Hotel was never meant to be that way. Nestled near the heart of the Perth CBD, old-world architecture and charm meets funky and modern decor and cuisine. If you like to keep things simple, order a pub meal and eat it out in the courtyard or in The Lounge, or for something a little more fancy, try the wine and tapas menu at the GrapeSkin Cafe while listening to some live jazz. If you’re just there for poker on Tuesdays, make sure you take advantage of the $15 pizza special.
k ar sh
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Nickname: Seagull (“I’m always taking people’s chips”) Age: 35 State: Victoria Region: Melton/Hume, Brimbank Maribyrnong Occupation: Systems engineer APL debut: 2006 Preferred venue: The Club, Caroline Springs Favourite hand: 8-6 suited Major tournaments/achievements: August 2010 Player of the Month
Name: Nickname: Age: Country: Region:
Holden or Ford? Holden Would you check-raise your own grandmother? Only if I had the nuts, because she’d probably call! You’re dealt pocket aces in the small blind on the bubble of a WSOP Main Event satellite, you have the second shortest stack and Phil Ivey is in the big blind with the big stack – what do you do? If I was significantly short, and if Phil’s been playing aggressively, I’m very confident he’d try to bully me out of the pot so I’d just limp and reraise all-in to any bet. If he puts me all-in with a very large bet, then I’d be at least 4:1 to win if I decide to call. Favourite holiday spot? The Gold Coast – it caters nicely for my kids
Tony Gallacher Deejay 25 New Zealand Central North/ Rotorua Club DJ End of 2009
Occupation: APL debut: Preferred venue: Copper Donkey Irish Bar, Rotorua Favourite hand: A-2 suited Major tournaments achievements: June 2010 Player of the Month; August 2010 Player of the Month – these are my biggest achievements to date, but I haven’t played a lot of poker as I only started 12 months ago! Chicken or beef? Chicken What was the first CD you bought? Sublime Cats or dogs? Dogs What’s the weirdest thing you’ve ever seen at a poker game? Probably my TD Layvone Evans. His dealing is pretty sick – if you’re behind, just raise, because you’re going to suck out almost every time! I’ve lost count of how many bad beats I’ve had on final tables through his dealing. Who’s the hottest poker player? Veronika Larsen – I had to Google that one
How would you torture Phil Hellmuth for crimes against fellow poker players? Bound and gag him, then lock him in a room with Daniel Negreanu and watch Daniel explain how Phil could improve his game. Name three bands you’d have for a backyard concert. Coldplay, The Fray, The Script Five-star restaurant or backyard BBQ? Five-star restaurant If you had a movie made about your life, which actor would play you? Leonardo Di Caprio
If you won the WSOP Main Event, what would you spend your money on? I’d put a lot of money aside for future WSOP
Main Event buy-ins and to create a bankroll. I’d buy a nightclub and a few cars that I’ve always wanted. I’d put some into a few properties as back-up and blow the rest on travel if there was any left!
rising apl stars
Look left and look right when you next take a seat at your local APL venue, you’ll never know when one of these sharks will be circling.
New South Wales
Ballina, Byron Bay, Lismore
Name: Nickname: Age: State: Region: Occupation:
Byron Bay Bowls
Major tournaments achievements: August 2010 Player of the Month – I am the perennial bridesmaid when it comes to majors. I can’t even win the Byron Classic at Hubby’s house!
Phil Green “The Phoenix” 46 Queensland Brisbane Full-time poker player (mostly cash games, but only just started playing APL this year) Moorooka Bowls Club, August 2010
APL debut: Preferred venue: Souths Sports Club, Acacia Ridge Favourite hand: Pocket aces Major tournaments achievements: August 2010 Player of the Month
What’s your guiltiest pleasure? Sara Lee ice cream, enough said. Lady Gaga or Katy Perry? Katy Perry
Who is your favourite poker player and why? Phil Gordon. His little green and little blue books helped my game immensely!
Beer or Bundy? Bundy What was the first concert you attended? Eurythmics at Athletic Park in Wellington Where is Omaha? Nebraska, USA
What three things would you save from a house fire? My laptop, my camera and my painting of Martin Luther King
Which poker player do you hate and why? Tom Dwan, because he is an awesome player and the same time really freakylooking
Facebook or Twitter? Facebook Should poker become an
What is your favourite TV show? Entourage AFL or NRL? Which team do you follow? NRL (Warriors) Tom Dwan
Olympic sport? In one word – NO Steak or parma? Steak Jennifer Hawkins or Miranda Kerr? Jennifer Hawkins. McDonald’s or KFC? KFC – Zinger Burgers, yum yum!
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Nick Filippopoulos has led a rich and fulfilling life since arriving in Australia as a youngster. The 57-year-old father of three has now also lived the ultimate poker dream, playing and cashing in the 2010 WSOP Main Event as part of TeamAPL. The man they call â&#x20AC;&#x153;The Professorâ&#x20AC;? took some time out in between serving customers at his pasta shop in Pymble to reflect on the journey.
nd: o y e b & m APL
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Back to the g
The Vegas experience
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Poker success is measured in several forms, but we all know the universal language of the game. These 10 players certainly know how to talk the talk.
Top 10 – All-time money earners (USD)
Phil Ivey (USA), $13,531,757
If you don’t know who Phil Ivey is by now, you’ve been living under a rock. The “Tiger Woods of Poker” has eight WSOP bracelets, a WPT title and now the number one ranking on the all-time money list after his runner-up finish in this year’s Aussie Millions $100,000 Challenge.
Daniel Negreanu (Canada), $12,680,705
The 36-year-old Canadian they call “Kid Poker” is one of the most recognised players on the circuit and regarded as having the best read in the game. As well as racking up two WPT titles and four WSOP bracelets, Daniel Negreanu has also contributed to Doyle Brunson’s book Super System II.
Jamie Gold (USA), $12,223,798
Hollywood producer-turned-poker player Jamie Gold won the WSOP Main Event title in 2006, defeating the largest field in history to win the coveted bracelet and USD $12,000,000 in prize money, but most of that was lost to Bruce Leyser after a legal dispute resulted in a settlement earlier this year.
Peter Eastgate (Denmark), $11,308,359
The 25-year-old Danish wunderkind broke Phil Hellmuth’s long-standing record of the youngest-ever WSOP Main Event champion when he won over USD $9 million in 2008. Since then, Peter Eastgate has added a runner-up finish in the 2009 EPT London Main Event and an eighthplace finish in the 2010 NBC National Heads-Up Championship.
Scotty Nguyen (USA), $10,828,112
What’s not to like about Scotty Nguyen, baby? The charismatic “Prince of Poker” has lived the dream since moving to Las Vegas from Vietnam in 1974, winning the WSOP Main Event in 1998 and has since added a WPT title and the 2009 WSOP $50,000 H.O.R.S.E. trophy to his resume.
Joe Hachem (Australia), $10,732,530
Long story short, Melbourne’s own Joe Hachem helped start “The Great Australian Poker Boom” after winning the 2005 WSOP Main Event. Hachem proved it was no fluke when he won the WPT Five Diamond World Poker Classic the following year, then followed it up with victory in the 2009 EPT London 8-Game Championship.
John Juanda (USA), $10,368,260
John Juanda is one the most respected players on the global poker circuit, renowned for his cool, calm and collected manner at the tables. He’s also one of the most decorated, having won three WSOP bracelets, including the 2008 WSOP Europe Main Event, as well as making six WPT final table appearances.
Allen Cunningham (USA), $9,947,779
Erik Seidel (USA), $9,754,785
Before the time of online players like Tom Dwan and Bertrand ElkY Grospellier, Allen Cunningham was one of the “new kids on the block”, quickly earning a reputation as an accomplished poker player, winning five WSOP bracelets between 2001 and 2007 as well as taking down the WSOP Circuit Event at Caesars Palace in 2008.
Despite finishing runner-up to Johnny Chan in the 1988 WSOP Main Event and also to Alexander Kostritsyn in the 2008 Aussie Millions, Erik Seidel has enjoyed plenty of success in poker, amassing eight WSOP bracelets and 19 career victories, his most recent being the 2010 Aussie Millions $10,000 Pot Limit Omaha event.
Carlos Mortensen (Spain), $9,703,842
The man they call “El Matador” burst onto the scene in 2001 with three consecutive major tournament victories, including the WSOP Main Event in May that year. Carlos Mortensen also won this year’s WPT Hollywood Poker Open event, tying with Gus Hansen for the most WPT titles won with three.
While there’s no doubt that No Limit Texas Hold’em is the jeu du jour for major tournaments, more players in the elite ranks are branching out into other variants of poker in order to find more action more often, particularly in high-stakes cash games. The most popular of these “other” poker games is Omaha and while it may seem complicated at first, it’s surprisingly easy to learn– but with so many cards in play, it’s even harder to keep your cool when you get outdrawn more often than not! The game is played using either limit or pot-limit betting and while Omaha can cater for up to 10 players, it’s best played with six to eight players. Dealing the game is a cinch – instead of two hole cards, each player is dealt four cards before the first round of betting. From there, the rest of the game is the same as Hold’em – three cards on the flop, one on the turn and one more on the river, with a betting round after every street before showdown. The object of the game is to form the best five-card hand, using only two of the four cards in your hand, plus three out of the five community cards. It can take new players some time to get used to Omaha (particularly if they’ve been playing Hold’em for so long), so to ease into it at your next home game, try running a Hold’em/Omaha rotation tournament, changing between games at the end of each blind level. Omaha is a pleasant (albeit tilt-inducing) change from the usual, but it’s a whole lot of fun! • Omaha is the ‘O’ in the popular mixed game H.O.R.S.E. and shares its name with a town in the American state of Nebraska. The best starting hand in Omaha is A-A-K-K (double-suited), unless you’re playing Omaha Hi-Lo, where the best hand is A-A-2-3 (double-suited). • Professional poker player Robert Turner is credited as the creator of Omaha and it was spread for the first time in Las Vegas at the Golden Nugget Casino in 1983. • In the same year, the World Series of Poker incorporated a $1000 Limit Omaha event into their schedule, which was won by renowned poker author David Sklansky.
What are the odds ... of cracking pocket aces with Jh 10h on a flop of Kh 7h Qs? Answer: Aces: 54% chance, Jh-10h: 46% chance. Despite being almost a 4:1 underdog pre-flop, the J-10 has now scored 14 outs for an up-and-down straight draw and the flush draw – it’s practically a coin flip!
Famous last hands Mike McDermott (Matt Damon) vs. Teddy KGB (John Malkovich), Rounders, 1998: On a board that read 6-710-3-A, McDermott checked on the river before KGB announced that he was allin. “That ace could not have helped you,” Teddy said as he splashed the last of his chips into the pot. “I bet it all.” “You’re right Teddy, the ace didn’t help me,” McDermott replied, before snap-calling and rolling up 9-8 suited. “I flopped the nut straight.” This sent KGB on uber-tilt, causing security to intervene, but he quickly calmed down and ordered his staff to “pay that man his money” before leaving the room.
Ultimate destination PokerStars Caribbean Adventure, Atlantis Resort & Casino, The Bahamas: January 7-16: What better way to kick-start the new year than with a trip over to the Bahamas for the largest poker tournament series outside of North America? The PCA is the perfect blend of luxury, entertainment and of course, poker. Even if you get knocked out early, you’ll be able to enjoy everything the Atlantis Resort has to offer – and be sure to bring the whole family, as this is one event that everyone will enjoy!
No Limit laughs A group of guys were playing in a dodgy home game. One of them laid down the winning hand, and another jumped up, yelling, “He’s cheatin! He’s not playin’ the cards I dealt him!”
Isn’t that …? Two people who’ve had a brush or two with the law and also qualify for separated at birth status: the star of Kung Fu and Kill Bill David Carradine and six-time WSOP bracelet winner Layne “Back-to-Back” Flack
Did you know? Former US president Warren G. Harding once gambled and lost a box of priceless White House china in a poker game during his brief term in office from 1921-23.
• This year’s WSOP $10,000 Pot Limit Omaha World Championship was won by 25-year-old American pro Daniel Alaei, taking his WSOP bracelet total to three – one of which was the $10,000 Omaha Hi-Lo World Championship in 2008!
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TURNCARD Name: Doyle Brunson Nickname: Texas Dolly Age: 77 Lives: Las Vegas, NV, USA Major honours: 1976, 1977 WSOP Main Event winner 10 WSOP bracelets Poker Gall of Fame inductee 1988 2004 WPT Legends of Poker winner Tournament winnings: USD $6 million
Doyle Brunson Doyle Brunson is rightly regarded as the elder statesmen of poker. Since the first World Series of Poker was played in 1970, Brunson has been a part of the tournament’s fabric. And it’s sure come along way since that first reunion of former Texas road gamblers at the Horseshoe Casino four decades ago, as he discussed with Shuffle during a break in play at this year’s WSOP. 60
pro interview Shuffle Magazine: Doyle, tell us about the man responsible for the WSOP, Benny Binion. What kind of man was he? Doyle Brunson: Benny Binion was probably the wisest man that I ever knew. He wasn’t an educated man – he wasn’t book-smart – but as far as common sense goes, and knowing people, he could relate to a person right away. He was absolutely amazing. Benny knew what people wanted and he gave it to ’em. He wasn’t a greedy type of man; he was willing to spend some money to make some money. His contribution to poker is immeasurable, simply because of the way he handled the World Series in the early days. SM: What would Benny have made of the explosion in poker’s popularity? DB: Well, like everyone else, he couldn’t have expected this. He used to say to me, ‘You know, Doyle, someday we may have a hundred people in this tournament.’ It was entirely different back in those days. It was kinda like a homecoming. The World Series of Poker was like a yearly reunion for all the road gamblers from around the country – and there weren’t that many of us; but the competition was fierce and the players were the best in the world. To my mind, they were so much better than today’s players; you can’t even compare ’em. SM: What are your recollections of that first-ever event, back in 1970? DB: That first event was really designed to get people here for the side action; it wasn’t really about the tournament itself. Most of the players came for the side games, but when the tourists saw what was going on, they came to watch. That’s what stimulated Benny’s interest; he saw how people were fascinated by what was going on, and that’s why he went ahead and pursued the Series like he did. SM: Tell us a bit about the first winner, Johnny Moss. DB: Johnny was the premier player back in those days. If I ever had a mentor, it was him. Not that he tried to teach me; I just observed him. I’d played with him for years and years down in Texas. I picked up much of the way I play from him, because I saw how successful he was. SM: He won again the next year, too, and then, in 1972, it was Amarillo Slim. What was Slim’s contribution to the game?
SM: 1976 marked your first WSOP win. What did it mean to you?
What is the “Doyle Brunson” hand? Only four men have won the World Series of Poker main event twice – incredibly, all won successive titles. Even more remarkably, Brunson, won his 1976 and 1977 titles with the same starting hand and made a full house in both cases. Brunson’s name is also closely associated with another hand, mentioning on several occasions that he tries not to play A-Q.
Did you know? Doyle Brunson penned arguably the most famous book in poker history. Although now slightly outdated by hundreds of poker primers, Super/ System: A Course in Power Poker still offers an excellent grounding in all forms of the game. At the time of its release in 1976, Brunson was maligned by fellow pros for giving away too many secrets. Super/ System II, released in 2005, was the most anticipated book in poker history, and it was considered the highest honour possible to be asked to pen a chapter by Brunson.
DB: It didn’t seem like it was that significant a milestone at the time. I think that everybody thought that I was the best player then, and in truth, I think I was. So it just seemed fitting that I won. The tournament still didn’t have that much prestige back then. SM: So when did the WSOP start to become a prestigious event? DB: Well, it was a gradual thing. The tournament has grown every year since its inception. But I think it was probably when the television hit – around the mideighties – that was when it really took off. SM: What does the World Series mean to you today? DB: It’s a milestone in the evolution of poker. It’s just edifying to walk in there and see thousands of people, all ready to start the World Series. It almost brought tears to my eyes last year – this sea of poker tables and people. I can only imagine what guys like Johnny Moss, Paul Harvey, Doc Ramsey, Pat Renfro, Benny Binion – all the old-timers – would say if they could see this. I think the event itself has lost a little prestige, though, in that anybody can win it – some winners in the last few years have come off the internet and not been accomplished poker players. But that just shows what a wonderful game poker is – in a short period of time anybody can beat anybody. SM: What do you make of the whole media circus that surrounds the event now? DB: I think it’s just that America’s found out what I’ve known for many, many years – that poker’s the greatest game there is. It’s become fashionable. When I go into an airport, I just can’t believe the people that come up to me. I always ask them where they’re from, and they’re from everywhere. It’s just unbelievable. SM: Can a big name pro ever win the World Series again? DB: I doubt it. I’ll sit down at the table and some of these kids will say, “Well, I know you got me beat, but I just want to break the legend. So they put all their money in there and, sooner or later, one of ’em’s gonna get you. I imagine I play more all-in pots than anybody in these tournaments, simply because everybody wants to beat me. It’s really difficult to win one of these things.
DB: Slim was more a promotion guy than any of the rest of us. He promoted himself
all the time and he had a certain charm that the public loved. He had all his own corny little sayings that the press picked up on. Once he won the tournament, he really worked hard at it; he went on all the talk shows and did extensive interviews. Slim did a lot for the game of poker – he was the first “poker celebrity.”
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Fun with Fortune and Freedman When it comes to APL and Melbourne, Malcolm Fortune and Nick Freedman have the northern and eastern suburbs nicely sorted. Two of the most popular and hard-working franchisees in the country, Fortune and Freedman host thousands of players at scores of venues every week.
About the region
“Donna Moore (pictured right) is one of our prominent players in our region. She’s a previous state champion and also played in the first episode of Australian Poker Hero. Then there are big personalities like Darren ‘Merv’ Hughes and Paul ‘Gumboots’ Collins. ‘Gumboots’ got his name after walking into an event one night in Pakenham – it had been raining – and he still had his wellies on!” Fortune went on to explain that once you get a nickname, you’re in Team Happy Trippers for life: “There’s a ‘Zipper’ – think of the movie There’s Something About Mary – also Shane ‘Zombie’ Johnson and Con ‘Bhudda’ Mavridis. Our staff all have nicknames too: Nick is ‘Mr. Happy’, I’m known as ‘Dibs’ and Kayla, one of our TDs, is known as ‘Blondie’. “There’s also Nicole ‘Cold Deck’ Morris (who appeared on episode three of Australian Poker Hero, right). She used to play one day a week in our region and many more games in others, but she snuck through our ranks to secure a seat into the 2009 Wild Turkey Grand Slam. I gave her a call and invited her to become part of Team Happy Trippers. She was really nervous at first because it was her first major event and she really didn’t know any of our guys, but they really helped her settle in. As a result she made the money and we’ve since adopted her as one of our own!”
From the far north country town of Yea, to Lilydale in the east; down to the southern suburb of Pakenham and across to Gisborne in the west – there’s barely any rest for APL franchisees Malcolm Fortune and Nick Freedman, having worked tirelessly for over three years managing all six of their Victorian regions – Glen Eira-Bayside City Council, Moreland-Darebin, Monash, Port Phillip-Stonnington, Whittlesea-Nillumbik and the Yarra Ranges. One could only imagine how they manage to cope with it all, but despite all the hardships, they’re still enjoying the ride. “It’s a lot of hard work and if you don’t take the time to listen to the players and not allow them to have contact with you, then you’re not going to keep anybody happy for long,” said Fortune. “We’ve had a lot of ups and downs along the way; dealing with employees and venues and plenty of outside competition. It’s been tricky and we’re kept on our toes, but at the end of the day, when I get to events, I still have fun.” The hard work is indeed paying off – thousands of players are voting with their feet, playing in more than 30 venues that span across the outskirts of the Melbourne metropolitan region every week. Within those players is a dedicated troupe of regulars that call themselves “Team Happy Trippers” who not only have big personalities but big results to boot.
Regions: Glen Eira-Bayside City Council (VGB), MorelandDarebin (VMD), Monash (VMO), Port Phillip-Stonnington (VPS), Whittlesea-Nillumbik (VWN), Yarra Ranges (VYR) Venues: Abruzzo Club, Broadford Hotel, Bryce’s Tavern, Casa D’Abruzzo Club, Castello’s Foresters Arms, Castello’s Pakenham Hotel, Castello’s Pakenham Inn, The Crown Hotel, Caulfield RSL, Elwood RSL, Fairfield/Alphington RSL, The Furlan Club, The Grand Hotel, Hampton RSL, Kalkallo Hotel, Kilmore Trackside, The Local, Paradise Valley Hotel, The Pine Grove Hotel, St Kilda Army/Navy Club, South Oakleigh Club, Victorian Tavern, Whittlesea Bowls Club, Xplicit Gentleman’s Club
Who’s making a mark
Doin’ it for the kids
Other players from their regions have tasted success, including rising star Lucio Esposito (below), who has won the Victorian Player of the Month race twice this year as well as the State Final in January, but some would argue that the biggest success stories would be that of Mike Chrisanthopoulos (third-place finisher
in the 2008 Aussie Millions Main Event) and TeamAPL member Ken Pattugalan (above). “Ken came third in the Wild Turkey Poker Classic in 2008 to get his seat and went over to Las Vegas last year,” Fortune said. “He was all ready to go but he got a phone call from home and was informed that his mother had a heart attack, so he had to pull out and head back to Australia. “He got home just in time to see her before she passed, but fortunately he was able to go back this year and play. He didn’t cash, but he lived the poker dream and let’s face it, there’s not many of us who’ll be able to do that!”
Rising from the ashes But it hasn’t all been smooth sailing for their regions, with the Whittlesea region in particular suffering through the Black Saturday bushfires. “The whole situation affected so many people,” Freedman said. “A lot of people lost their houses and others lost loved ones – it was massive.” Fortune also recalled his experiences: “It even affected our players over in Pakenham and we had to cancel games in Healesville for one week because of the fire danger, but one guy’s story stood out and that was Charlie Borg’s. His family lost four houses and at one stage he was staying with one of our TDs for a few nights. He’s really into his poker and he lost all the tables he owned, so we phoned up head office and managed to get him a new table.” In the end, whether the times are good or bad, it’s the community spirit that truly shines through. “We’re really proud of the fact that we’ve been able to foster a friendly, family-oriented atmosphere,” Fortune said. “In fact, that’s the reason why some clubs are still with us, particularly the larger sports clubs and RSLs, because we encourage our players to get involved and always try to cater to their needs.” Freedman agrees: “We’ve always had a strong belief in the APL and I feel that even now the APL is still the premier poker provider here in Victoria,” he said. “We’ve developed a solid relationship with our players and our venues and despite other leagues trying to muscle their way into our region, the venues have all stood firm with us. That’s a big testament to the quality of our product.”
Wednesday night APL games at the Caulfield RSL are a bit crazy – in fact they’re just downright ludicrous – but the costumes are all for a good cause. What started as a fun night out has since turned into a tradition, all in the name of raising money for Very Special Kids. Each night, a different theme is picked out and entry into the event is by a gold coin donation. Themes for these games in the past have included Kings and Queens, Pyjama Day and most recently “M-Day”, where everyone came dressed as something beginning with the letter M. There were mobsters, a mummy, Mario Bros, a pair of M&M’s – even some players dressed up as APL franchisee Malcolm Fortune! The Casa D’Abruzzo Club is also in on the action, raising funds by raffling off custom poker apparel, donated by Whittlesea APL icon Kerry Walton, known by all as “Santa”. The white bushy beard is a dead giveaway, but Walton truly lives up to his jolly moniker, working as a professional Santa Claus in and around Melbourne!
Regular events Day Mon Mon Mon Mon Mon Tues Tues Wed Wed Wed Wed Wed Wed Wed
Venue Casa D’Abruzzo Club Victorian Tavern Fairfield/Alphington RSL Castello’s Pakenham Inn Bryce’s Tavern South Oakleigh Club Kalkallo Hotel The Furlan Club Caulfield RSL Hampton RSL The Local The Grand Hotel Whittlesea Bowls Club Broadford Hotel
Region Registration VWN 6.30pm VWN 6.30pm VMD 6.30pm VYR 6.30pm VYR 6.30pm VGB 6.30pm VWN 6.30pm VMD 6.30pm VGB 6.30pm VGB 6.30pm VPS 6.30pm VYR 6.30pm VWN 6.30pm VWN 6.30pm
Start time Type 7.30pm Free 7.30pm Free 7.30pm Free 7.30pm Free 7.30pm Free 7.30pm Free 7.30pm Pro ($11) 7.30pm Free 7.30pm Free 7.30pm Free 7.30pm Free 7.30pm Free 7.30pm Free 7.30pm Free
Thurs Thurs Thurs Thurs Thurs Fri Fri Fri Sat Sund Sund Sund
The Crown Hotel VYR The Pine Grove Hotel VYR Kilmore Trackside VWN Xplicit Gentleman’s Club VMD Elwood RSL VPS Castello’s Foresters Arms VMO Paradise Valley Hotel VYR The Furlan Club VMD Abruzzo Club VMD St Kilda Army/Navy Club VPS South Oakleigh Club VGB Castello’s Pakenham Hotel VYR
6.30pm 6.30pm 6.30pm 6.30pm 6.30pm 11pm 6.30pm 6.30pm Noon 2.30pm 6pm 6pm
7.30pm Free 7.30pm Free 7.30pm Free 7.30pm Pro ($11) 7.30pm Free Midnight Free 7.30pm Free 7.30pm Free 1pm Free 3.30pm Free 7pm Free 7pm Pro ($11)
s nt e v le p a
All you need to know about major APL and major regional poker tournament series coming up in 2010
The original home of Aussie poker is gearing up for an exciting new tournament series, featuring 16 events with buy-ins from as little as $45. The Main Event is expected to generate a prize pool worth more than $300,000.
▲ October 8-11 – ANZPT Melbourne, Crown Casino, Melbourne, VIC The ANZPT’s penultimate event has been given an overhaul, with plenty of side events culminating in the $2700 Main Event. Can hometown hero Tony Hachem make it back-to-back ANZPT Player of the Year titles?
October 25-30 – ANZPT Darwin, SKYCITY Darwin, Northern Territory
October 31 – APL Battle of the Regions, Venue TBC The APL’s Battle of the Regions is back by popular demand in 2010! With an affordable $640 buy-in per team plus APLPT tickets up for grabs, be quick and grab an entry form from your Tournament Director.
November 14 – APL Pro Open, West Leagues Club, Leumeah, NSW Time to up the ante and head to Sydney’s south-west – the November APL Pro Open in Leumeah will be one of your last chances to qualify for the APLPT this year.
November 6-8 – WSOP Main Event final table, Rio Hotel & Casino, Las Vegas, USA
▲ Canterbury may be the home of the Bulldogs, but it’s going to be dog-eat-dog at the October APL Pro Open as the players vie for a ticket into the next APLPT event.
December 7-12 – APPT Sydney, Star City Casino, Sydney, NSW Season four of the APPT wraps up at Star City, featuring a line-up of side events plus the $6300 Main Event. Can the title stay in NSW for the fourth successive year?
The ANZPT debuts in the Top End for the eighth and final stop of season two. As well as the $2200 buy-in Main Event, players will get the chance to explore the outback with fantastic tourism opportunities.
7,310 have already been eliminated, now, the November Nine will return to Las Vegas to crown the 2010 WSOP Main Event champion. In the end, there can be only one.
October 10 – APL Pro Open, CanterburyHurlstone Park RSL, NSW
September 25-October 2 – Adelaide Casino Poker Championships, Adelaide, SA
November 10-14 – APPT Cebu, ShangriLa Mactan Resort, Cebu, Philippines The APPT returns to the stunning five-star ShangriLa Resort in Cebu. This USD $2165 event is not just a tournament, but also the ultimate poker getaway. Expect this event to sell out!
November 27-29 – APLPT Melbourne, Crown Casino, Melbourne, VIC
January 15-31, 2011 – Aussie Millions, Crown Casino, Melbourne, VIC Crown will once again host the Aussie Millions, offering 20 championship events, including the $10,000 Main Event. Even if you don’t play, this is your chance to see the world’s best poker players in action. Don’t miss out!
The final stop on the APLPT takes us back to Melbourne. With a TeamAPL package up for grabs, as well as the last Playboy Fragrance Players Party for 2010, be sure to secure your seat in one of our upcoming Mega Satellites listed below (with others to be announced for Perth and Hobart). October 17 (10.30am for noon) Thurgoona Country Club Resort, Albury, NSW October 23 (11.30am for 1pm) Byron Bay Services Club, NSW October 23 (10.30am for noon) The Furlan Club, Thornbury, Vic October 23 (5pm for 6pm) Corrimal RSL, Wollongong, NSW October 24 (11am for 1pm) Transcontinental Hotel, Brisbane, Qld October 24 (1pm for 2pm) Orange Ex-Serviceman’s Club, Dubbo, NSW October 30 (11am for 1pm) East Cessnock Bowling Club, NSW October 31 (1pm for 2pm) Regency Tavern, Regency Park, SA November 6 (3pm for 4pm) North Mackay Bowls Club, Qld Spring 2010
APLPT Melbourne Autographs
APLPT Melbourne Autographs
13 - 30 JANUARY 2011 CHAMPIONSHIP SCHEDULE
Date Thur 13 Fri 14
Opening Event - NLH Day 1 Flight 1
Phase 1 Satellite
Opening Event - NLH Day 1 Flight 2 (Repechage)
Phase 3 Supershot Satellite - Main Event
Tournament Phase 2 Satellite
Phase 3 Supershot Satellite Main Event
$100,000 Challenge (2 Day Event)
Phase 2 Satellite
Opening Event - NLH Day 1 Flight 3 (Re-Repechage)
Phase 3 Supershot Satellite Main Event
Phase 2 Satellite
Phase 3 Supershot Satellite - Main Event
$1,100 (1,000+100) $250 (230+20)
Phase 2 Satellite
Phase 2 Satellite
Phase 2 Satellite
Phase 1 Satellite
Opening Event - NLH Day 2 2
Phase 2 Satellite
PokerPro NLH Shootout
Phase 3 Supershot Satellite - Main Event
Phase 2 Satellite
Phase 1 Satellite
Pot Limit Omaha (2 Day Event)
Phase 2 Satellite
Phase 3 Supershot Satellite - Main Event
Phase 2 Satellite
Phase 1 Satellite 5
8 Game Mixed Event (2 Day Event) Phase 2 Satellite
Phase 3 Supershot Satellite - Main Event
Phase 2 Satellite
Phase 1 Satellite
NLH - 6 Handed (2 Day Event)
8 Game Mixed Event Day 2
Phase 3 Supershot Satellite - Main Event
$1,150 (1,060+90) $250 (230+20)
Phase 2 Satellite
Aussie Millions Main Event Day 1 Flight 2
Last Chance Phase 2 Satellite 2
Aussie Millions Main Event Day 1 Flight 3
High Stakes Cash Game 11
Pot Limit Omaha
Australian Heads Up Championship - (32 Players Max)
8 Game Mixed Event
$1,150 (1,000+150)/ $1,000 Rebuys $250 (230+20) $1,150 (1,060+90) $250 (230+20)
*Tournament terms and conditions apply. Entry to the casino is open to all persons 18 years and over. Entrants must be a Crown Signature Club member. Membership requires appropriate identification. Full terms and conditions awaiting approval by regulator. Please check on-line at www.crownpoker.com.au or at the Poker Desk, located on Level B2, Crown Entertainment Complex closer to tournament date for full terms and conditions.
4:15pm Sat 29
$5,300 (5,000+300) $10,500 (10,000+500)
$10,500 (10,000+500) $550 (500+50)
NLH 6 handed
Australian Heads Up Championship - Finals 18
Aussie Millions Main Event - Day 5 19
2:00pm Sun 30
Aussie Millions Main Event - Day 4
Aussie Millions Main Event - Day 3
Aussie Millions Main Event - Day 2
NLH - 6 Handed Day 2 Phase 3 Supershot Satellite - Main Event
Last Chance Phase 2 Satellite 1
Phase 2 Satellite
$65 (50+15) $1,100 (1,000+100)
Phase 2 Satellite
Phase 1 Satellite
Phase 3 Supershot Satellite Main Event
Phase 2 Satellite NLH - Rebuys (2 Day Event)
NLH Teams Event
Last Chance Supershot Satellite - Main Event
Phase 2 Satellite
NLH Shootout Day 2
Pot Limit Omaha Day 2
$100,000 Challenge Day 2
Phase 3 Supershot Satellite - Main Event
$250 (230+20) $10,600 (10,000+600)
High Stakes Cash Game
Phase 1 Satellite
Aussie Millions Main Event Day 1 Flight 1
$250 (230+20) $1,150 (1,060+90)
Phase 2 Satellite
Phase 2 Satellite
NLH Shootout (2 Day event)
$250 (230+20) $1,150 (1,060+90)
Cost (Buy in + Entry)
No Limit Holdem - Rebuys Day 2
E = Event
Phase 1 Satellite
Phase 2 Satellite
Cost (Buy in + Entry)
Feature Event - NLH (Bounties) Day 1
NLH 6 Handed Day 2 20
Feature Event - NLH (Bounties) Day 2
Aussie Millions Farewell Party