Kim Claims Head Hunter Title; Yuen Outlasts in Pineapple; Argao Reigns Over the Ladies

Another three side events have come and gone at the Asian Poker Tour Finale 2015 with the Head Hunter event, the High Roller Open Face Chinese Pineapple event, and the Ladies of Poker event running throughout the day at the Waterfront Manila Pavilion Casino Filipino. By the time the last event wrapped up, another three players were awarded APT trophies and sizable cash prizes to a good number of players.

One of the most popular events in the APT roster, the Head Hunter event with a P4,400 bounty for each player scalped, was the first to kick off the day. This event saw a total of 101 entries. Action was fast and fierce with many players losing their heads quick. Japanese pros Tetsuya Tsuchikawa, Azusa Maeda, and Iori Yogo were some of the casualties of the day. Joining them were the Welcome Event 1M Guaranteed champion, Sebastian Benz from Germany, and APT Asian Series Manila 2014 Main Event champion Mike Takayama. The hardest to fall however was Filipino player Edilberto Gopez who bubbled at the hands of fellow countryman Ed Silvano.

Head Hunter Champion, Il Kwon Kim

Il Kwon Kim’s story would be the opposite. Entering the final table, Kim had a massive stack after winning a double up against big-stacked Filipino player Noel Araniel. At the final table, Kim faced tough Filipino players such as Andrew Gaw and Regie Ann Delos Reyes, however, Kim would continue to be a force to reckon with. After eliminating Filipino player Luke Pangan in third place, he went head-to-head against Delos Reyes. With roughly equal stacks, both players opted to make a deal. Kim went on to hold his head high after scalping Delos Reyes with pocket aces well dominating her king-jack.

Top Three Payouts:

1st – Il Kwon Kim – Korea P258,000
2nd– Regie Ann Delos Reyes – Philippines – P213,500
3rd – Luke Pangan – Philippines – P120,400

Ladies of Poker

Ladies of Poker Champion, Maria Cristina Argao

Shortly after the start of the Head Hunter event, the Ladies of Poker event was up and running with 12 women signed up. Among them was Ferlyn Cabaling who already has five trophies on her shelf for this event. Unfortunately, Cabaling would not add another as she was eliminated before the money stage. The lady who would go the distance was Maria Cristina Argao who established a massive lead in the early stages of the tournament and managed to extend that lead until the heads up round against Young Yi Choi. With her dominating stack, Argao attempted to grind Choi down however, Choi had other plans and managed to chip up but not for long. Argao shaved off a big chunk of Choi’s chips when her jack-nine landing two pair against Choi’s pocket kings, and then went on to claim the trophy with a nut flush.


1st – Maria Cristina Argao – Philippines – P29,100
2nd – Young Yi Choi – Korea – P17,500
3rd – Corine Shi – Singapore – P11,600

High Roller OFC Pineapple

High Roller OFC Pineapple Champion, Pang Kwong Yuen

The final event on the roster was the High Roller OFC Pineapple event. This was another new event in the APT schedule. Six players coughed up the P55,000 buy-in with two players earning a profit. At three-handed, Filipino player Carmen Esdaile, Korean player Sim Jae Kyung aka Simba, and Malaysian player Pang Kwong Yuen battled it out with Yuen first in danger of elimination. Simba held the biggest stack so it was difficult to chip him down. After several hours, Yuen managed to claw his way back into the game while Esdaile tipped the other way and bubbled. At heads up, the chips moved back and forth until Yuen started spreading better hands consistently to eventually eliminate Simba and claim the trophy.

1st – Pang Kwong Yuen – Malaysia – P190,000
2nd – Sim Jae Kyung – Korea – P101,000

Congratulations to all the winners! We will be back tomorrow for the start of the Main Event at 1pm. For all the details, head to the APT Finale schedule.