APT Incheon, South Korea 2023: The Preview

Joseph Wong / 6 Jul 2023

APT Incheon, South Korea 2023: The Preview

Following the release of the upcoming APT Incheon, South Korea 2023 schedule, the Asian Poker Tour will be heading to South Korea for the first visit of 2023 and its fifth visit overall.

On the last visit back in October 2022 the Series saw 2,899 total entries from 33 different countries and regions compete for a staggering KRW 2,970,722,000 (USD $2,092,427) in prize money over the 20-trophy-event festival – making it one of the richest APT events of 2022.

It was Azerbaijan’s Farhad Aghayev the man to take the Main Event crown the last time around, defeating a 486-strong field to claim the lion’s share of the KRW 942,840,000 (USD $659,849) prize pool, taking home a top prize of KRW 170,228,000 (USD $119,134) in addition to his first ever title and the biggest haul of his career.

A lot has changed since then, with the revamped and rebranded APT smashing all previous records for field size and prize pools at April’s APT Taipei, Taiwan, 2023 and expectations are high for another stellar Series.

Running August 25-September 3 at the luxurious Paradise Hotel & Casino Resort, APT Incheon, South Korea 2023 is going to be close to three times the size of its predecessor, boasting 57 trophy events comprised of nine different poker variants and a further nine variations of No Limit Hold’em.

Add in a tasty KRW 3BN (~USD $2.3M) in prize pool guarantees – with the biggest highlight being the KRW 2.3M (~USD $1,700) Main Event and its KRW 1.3BN (~USD $1M) guarantee – and you have a recipe for a poker extravaganza of epic proportions.

With so many tournaments offering such a diverse spread of games, deciding what to play will be one of the biggest challenges the Series poses so we’ve taken a close look at the schedule to highlight some of the marquee events you should be penciling into your diary:


APT Main Event (KRW 1.3BN/~USD $1M GTD): KRW 2.3M (~USD $1.7k) buyin, running Aug 28-Sept 2

As always, the biggest draw will be the APT Main Event, which comprises four opening flights running Monday, August 28, to Wednesday, August 30, with the tournament concluding Saturday, September 2. Players start with 40,000 in chips. Flight A boasts the longest level length of 60-minutes, with Flight B (45-minutes) and Flights C & D (30-minutes) speeding up the action. Level length is 60-minutes from Day 2 onwards. Will Aghayev repeat chance and successfully defend his title, or will we see a new champion arise? Join us in Incheon and it could well be you taking home the stunning APT golden lion flagship trophy.

APT Kickoff (KRW 175M/~USD $135K GTD): KRW 600K (~USD $460) buyin, running Aug 25-26

The Series action gets underway at 12pm local time on Friday, August 25 with the two opening flights of the APT Kickoff, with the tournament concluding on Saturday, August 26. Players receive a 30,000 starting stack and compete over 30-minute levels (20-minutes on Flight B) to claim the first marquee title on offer for the festival.

Mystery Bounty Hunter Sponsored by Natural8 (KRW 225M/~USD $174K GTD): KRW 800K (~USD $620) buyin, running Aug 26-27

The Mystery Bounty Hunter boasts two starting flights: running Saturday, August 26 at 12pm and 6pm local time with the tournament concluding on Sunday, August 27. Starting stack is 30,000 with 30-minute level length (20-minutes on Flight B). It was Japan’s Kono Reiji the man to solve the mystery back at APT Incheon 2022, defeating a 264-strong field to take the largest slice of the KRW 100.8M (USD $70.5K) prize pool and claim the KRW 24M (USD $16.8K) top prize.

APT Super High Roller - 8 Max (KRW 250M/~USD $192K GTD): KRW 7M (~USD $5.4k) buyin, running Aug 26-27

Boasting the second largest buy-in of the Series, the APT Super High Roller draws some of the Asia-Pacific’s top poker players who will be competing for the first of the APT flagship tournament trophies of the Series – the coveted APT pewter lion. Players receive a 250,000-chip starting stack and compete over 40-minute levels.

Sunday Super Stack (KRW 100M/~USD $77K GTD): KRW 700K (~USD $540) buyin, running Aug 27

A fast-paced event with a decent structure that plays out in a day, the Sunday Super Stack is perfect for those weekend poker warriors looking to test their mettle. Players start with a 100,000-chip stack and compete over 25-minute levels.

Superstar Challenge - 8 Max: KRW 13M (~USD $10K) buyin, running Aug 28

Boasting the biggest buy-in on the schedule, the Superstar Challenge might not draw the largest field, but it does draw some of the Asia-Pacific’s best who compete for one of the largest prize pools outside of the Main Event. Players start with a 250,000-chip stack and compete over 30-minute levels.

Zodiac Classic - Sponsored by Natural8 - Single Re-Entry (KRW 200M/~USD $154.5K GTD):KRW 1.5M (~USD $1.15k) buyin, running Aug 31-Sept 1

First introduced at APT Taipei 2023, the Zodiac Classic attracted a 386-strong field on its debut with South Korea’s Younghee Park claiming the lion’s share of the TWD $6.7M (~USD $219K) prize pool and taking home the TWD $1.3M (~USD $42.5K) first prize. Players start with 40,000 in chips and compete over 30-minute levels.

Double Stack (KRW 150M/~USD $115K GTD): KRW 800K (~USD $620) buyin, running Sept 1-2

Rebranded from the Monster Stack for APT Taipei 2023, the Double Stack drew 390 entries on its relaunch generating a TWD $5.1M (~USD $166.6K) prize pool, with Hong Kong’s Ho Yi Chau taking a TWD $991K (~USD $32.3K) top prize. Players start with 60,000 in chips and compete over 30-minute levels (20 on Flight B).

APT High Roller - 8 Max (KRW 350M/~$270K GTD): KRW 4.5M (~USD $3.4K) buyin, running Sept 2-3

The third of the Series flagship events – the two-day APT High Roller – closes out the festival with Asia’s top players competing for the coveted bronze lion APT trophy. It was Natural8 Ambassador Phachara Wongwichit the man to make history back at APT Taipei, 2023, defeating a record 302-strong field to claim the lion’s share of the TWD $26.3M (USD $860K) prize pool and take the TWD $4.8M (USD $156K) top prize. Players start with 100,000 in chips and compete over 40-minute levels.

APT Incheon, South Korea 2023 promises to be one of the standout poker festivals of the year, boasting an eclectic spread of poker variants and millions of dollars in prize money so take a trip to Paradise, achieve poker nirvana and bag yourself a coveted APT trophy!