Boyuan Qu emerged victorious in the richest poker tournament held on Korean soil to date, the ₩4,350,000 buy-in High Roller at the first ever PokerStars Festival Korea, banking a ₩72,160,000 payday. He bested a stacked field of 34 unique players who collectively made 62 separate entries and a tough final table that included PokerStars Team Online Pro Randy Lew.
Remarkably, Qu was the chip leader at the start of play on Day 2 and never relinquished the lead, going wire-to-wire to claim the top prize and trophy.
Final Table Results
|8||Sparrow Cheung||Hong Kong||₩9,620,000|
Since only eight places were paid in this event, the final table was reached before the money bubble broke. That didn't happen until Randy Lew eliminated Elias Gutierrez when the two players got the chips in before the flop and Lew's ace-ten caught up to Gutierrez's ace-king to send him to the rail.
Eliminations followed at a frantic pace from that point forward. Sparrow Cheung was the next to fall in eighth place when he got undersetted by Xingbiao Zhu, who entered late on Day 2. Zhu subsequently departed in seventh place when he got his chips in the middle with pocket nines against the ace-king of Kazuhiko Yotsushika and lost the coin flip.
On the very next hand, Yotsushika dispatched another foe to the rail when Daniel Demicki got his stack in with king-ten suited against Yotsushika's pocket deuces and Yotsushika turned a boat to leave Demick drawing dead. Randy Lew followed shortly thereafter in fifth place when he shoved from the small blind with nine-seven suited into the eventual champion's king-jack and didn't improve when the board rolled out.
Next to go was Horzuchi Yutaka, who departed in fourth place when he got his stack in preflop against Qu holding pocket nines to Qu's ace-king suited only to see Qu flop the nut flush. Takayuki Iwamoto became the third-place finisher when he got his short stack in the middle preflop with pocket fours and Qu, who called with king-eight, paired his eight on the flop to take the lead and Iwamoto found no help on the turn or river.
At the start of heads-up play, Qu had a nearly 3-1 chip lead over Yotsushika. However, Yotsushika didn't go quietly and nearly overtook Qu at one point as the two players battled back and forth for over an hour. It all came to an end when Yotsushika shoved into Qu's turned trip nines with king high and no hope of improving on the river. After the last card fell, Qu, who only has two previous live cashes on his tournament record, had officially banked the largest payday of his poker career by miles, taking home the approximate equivalent of $64,000 for his efforts in this event.
While the High Roller is in the books, the Main Event is already in progress, so be sure to keep it here for coverage of the remainder of the first PokerStars Festival Korea from the PokerNews live reporting team.
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