Mike Takayama entered the Final Eight with a healthy stack of just under a million chips but that was not enough for him as he persevered past his opponents to claim all the chips on the felt, and be crowned the champion of the APT Asian Series Manila Main Event along with bagging the P3,453,000 first prize purse.
Takayama’s rise to the top began with a huge double up against Samad Razavi on a board showing A♠ 2♥ 3♣ 10♣ 4♣. Takayama had A♣ 10♠ for top two pairs against Razavi’s two pair of A♦ 2♠. With that win, he moved to the top of the chip count.
Shortly after, Takayama eliminated Raymi Sanchez in 4th place with his cowboys surviving against Sanchez’s A-8 that did not find any light on the board.
At the three-handed stage, Takayama started chipping away on Razavi and Jay Lubas‘ chips. He then claimed another hefty pot against Lubas that escalated his already massive pile of chips to around 4.5 million.
Takayama then railed Razavi in 3rd place with his A♦ J♠ landing a higher flush against Razavi’s A♣ 5♠ on a board that ran 10♥ 10♠ 7♠ 6♠ 8♠. He then entered the heads up stage against Lubas with an overwhelming advantage of 6.2M chips versus Lubas’ 1M chips.
The heads up stage was not easy for Takayama who at one point doubled up Lubas when his pocket tens lost to Lubas’s full house on a board showing 7♦ K♠ 2♠ 8♥ 8♠. Lubas then started attacking Takayama’s stack and eventually stole the chip lead away from him. But that was short-lived. Takayama would not be affected and ruthlessly chipped away at Lubas’ stack until he reclaimed the lead and sealed the deal when his K♠ 8♥ landed a dominating two pair on a board of 4♥ 8♠ J♠ K♦ 9♦.
Mike Takayama bagged the P3,453,000 first place purse and is the APT Asian Series Manila Main Event Champion!
Over at the 6-Handed Event, Nguyen Van Sang of Vietnam topped a field of 147 entries to claim the final trophy of the series along with P546,400 in cold hard cash.