For the first time in its five-season history, the PokerStars.net Asia Pacific Poker Tour held an event in Melbourne, Australia. Season 5 of the APPT kicked off at Crown Casino last week. The Main Event attracted 260 players, creating an AUD$1,220,000 prize pool. Leo Boxell topped the field and took home AUD$330,000 for his efforts.
Notable Team PokerStars Pros Chris Moneymaker, Bryan Huang and Melbourne native Joe Hachem, as well as Team Online Kieran Walsh, attended the event. Also battling on the felt were Ben Delaney, James Obst, Jonathan Karamalikis, Grant Levy, Tony Hachem, 2011 Aussie Millions champion David Gorr, and the the last standing Australian in the 2011 WSOP Main Event, Andrew Hinrichsen.
Chris Moneymaker was the only notable American who made the journey Down Under. This was his first visit to Melbourne and it certainly made an impression on him. He marveled at how well the tournament was run and the with the city itself. “The APPT stopping in Melbourne is incredible” said Moneymaker. “This is the best tour stop I’ve been to in a long time. Everybody is so nice down here. The casino is amazingly huge, the poker room is huge, they have about 50 tables and it’s always packed. It’s a really nice casino and they do a really good job with tournaments,” he continued.
In addition to being a hotbed for poker, pros and amateurs alike love what Melbourne has to offer outside the actual tournament. “I like coming to Melbourne better than Sydney that’s for sure,” said APPT Sydney Season 4 champion Jonathan Karamalikis. “The poker room here is just awesome. It is probably my favorite poker room in the world. It’s very comfortable and is just the way a proper poker room should be. There’s lots to do in Melbourne as well, there are heaps of good places to go to dinner and the night life here is great.”
Adding a stop in Melbourne to the APPT is not surprising because the Crown Casino hosts the Aussie Millions, one of the biggest poker tournaments in the world, every January. "The move to Melbourne is personally great from my point of view. I’ve worked at Crown Casino for over 10 years in the poker room," said APPT President Danny McDonagh.
"In my opinion this is the premier poker venue in the world. The Asia Pacific Poker Tour was looking to put it way back up in people’s perspectives as one of the big tours of the world so places like Macau and Melbourne are key places in my mind.” Crown Casino’s poker room is home to over 50 tables and offers Australia’s largest range of cash games and tournaments.
The APPT also stops in Queenstown from August 23 to 28 and Macau from November 23 to 27 during its fifth season. To see the results from APPT Melbourne, as well as all of the PokerStars.net APPT, check out the PokerNews Live Reporting pages.
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