Tran outshines the pros at the High Rollers; Abdulla rules the Head Hunter

The Asian Poker Tour had another exciting day at the felt with two more players picking up trophies at the APT Poker Weekend Series Manila 2016 held at the APT Poker Room in the Waterfront Manila Pavilion Hotel & Casino. The first to conclude was the High Rollers event with Canada’s Linh Tran outshining a field of pros, and just past the midnight hour, the Head Hunter event wrapped up with Singapore’s Ceesvin Abdulla rising to victory.

Linh Tran wins the High Rollers event

High Rollers Champion, Linh Tran

The High Rollers event began yesterday with 43 entries consisting of well-known pros and Asian circuit regulars. Each one of them coughed up the P55,000 entry fee for a total prize pool amounting to a hefty PhP2,085,000. Scheduled as a two-day event, 14 players returned today to battle it out for the title and the highly enticing first place purse of PhP730,000.

Entering the day with a big chip lead was Norway’s Markus Garberg but despite his early advantage, he burned out before the money. The first player to cash out was China’s Guofu Chen in 6th place. Next to the rail were Korea’s Kimura Lee Jong Yeol followed by Filipino Lester Edoc. This left three players, Korea’s Lim Yo Hwan, Singapore’s Ho Bao Qiang, and Linh Tran. While Tran held the chip lead for most of the night, he lost some steam at three-handed, and at one point, dropped down to the lowest stack.  All that changed however when Tran won a big pot against Lim with his trip aces. From there, he held a sizable lead that when Lim eliminated Qiang in 3rd place, Tran was still ahead in chips.

The heads up match was all Tran. He grinded down Lim until the final hand was dealt. Tran had 9 9 and Lim with 7 7. The board ran blanks, 8 5 6 2 3, and Tran was crowned the champion.

Ceesvin Abdulla wins the Head Hunter

Head Hunter Champion, Ceesvin Abdulla

The only side event offered today was the Head Hunter P4,000 Bounty event which attracted 85 players each one contributing P17,600 to the total prize pool of PhP979,200. The bubble burst when Singapore’s Ceesvin Abdulla eliminated a player in a three-way all in pot. After Japan’s Go Mori fell in 10th place, there was a wild triple up claimed by Japan’s Koji Tanizawa with his A-K completing a straight on the board against both of his opponents with sets. After more eliminations, a seasoned pro also bit the dust, Japan’s Iori Yogo in 6th place. Following Yogo to the rail was Kenneth Buck in 5th place and Handong Jo in 4th place.

By this time, Abdulla amassed a sizable stack against his two remaining opponents, Filipino Noel Araniel and Tanizawa. Araniel made up some ground by eliminating Tanizawa in 3rd place. The heads up round saw Araniel picking up enough small pots to overtake Abdulla but it would not last. Abdulla landed a big double up when his ace-queen won a coin flip against Araniel’s pocket jacks, then he coasted to victory with his K 4 hitting a flush of hearts against Araniel’s A 9.

For those who missed it, or if you are itching to see some of the poker action at the APT PWS Manila 2016, you can watch the daily highlights, the final 8 action of the High Rollers event, and the final 4 of the Head Hunter event in the APT YouTube channel.