Aussie Millions Postponed "For Time Being," Crown Resorts Exploring Options
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Amid reports that the Aussie Millions may not be returning this year, Crown Resorts has confirmed that the iconic poker stop "has been postponed for the time being."
However, the Australian gambling giant also acknowledged the massive role Aussie Millions has had on poker history and vowed to work with stakeholders to bring the festival back.
“Our highly acclaimed Aussie Millions Poker Championship is an iconic part of poker history and brings some of the world’s most renowned players to Crown Melbourne," a Crown Resorts spokesman said in a press release. "We are continuing to work with a range of stakeholders on new ways to bring the global poker community together and look forward to sharing more on the Aussie Millions soon.”
Read about the 2020 Aussie Millions Main Event
Woes Continue for Crown Resorts
While the announcement from Crown Resorts is a disappointing one, it is hardly surprising. Earlier this month, a Crown Poker representative replied to a Facebook comment on the Crown Poker page and noted that "poker tournaments will no longer be running at Crown."
That Facebook comment followed months of silence about the future of the Aussie Millions, long considered one of the most prestigious stops on the international poker circuit.
The last Aussie Millions took place in 2020 before the 2021 and 2022 festivals were postponed amid COVID-19 closures and concerns.
In that same period, Crown Resorts underwent a two-year investigation that ended with regulators declaring the gambling company unfit to hold a casino operating license for its various Australian properties.
Crown Resorts was allowed to continue operating and underwent several changes and reforms, including implementing a brand-new Board of Directors and changes to the way the company operates.
Naturally, these legal difficulties have marked trouble for the Aussie Millions. And "as a result of the ongoing discussions," Crown Resorts made the official decision to postpone the 2023 festival.
Uncertain Future for Iconic Poker Stop
The Aussie Millions festival — defined by massive stakes, balmy weather and luxurious beaches — dates back to 1998 when Alex Horowitz won what was then the AU$1,000 Australian Poker Championships for AU$25,900, as PokerNews recounted in a blog post at the 2015 Aussie Millions.
While the first event only drew 74 entries, the festival grew in popularity and eventually rebranded as the Aussie Millions as it switched to a No-Limit Hold'em format and had the buy-in upped to AU$10,000. Jamil Dia won was the first player to become a millionaire at the festival when he took down the 2005 Aussie Millions for AU$1 million.
The biggest-ever Aussie Millions prize of AU$1.7 million went to Alexander Kostritsyn in 2008 when he won the Main Event. The previous year, Gus Hansen took down the event for AU$1.5 million and documented his stellar tournament run in the proverbial poker book Every Hand Revealed.
Later winners of the Aussie Millions include Ari Engel (2016 - $1.1 million), Toby Lewis (2018 - $1.2 million) and the infamous Bryn Kenney (2018 - $914,616).
PokerNews will continue monitoring the status of the Aussie Millions festival. A full list of Aussie Millions winners is available in the table below.
All Aussie Millions Winners
|Year||Buy-in (AUD)||Entrants||Prize pool (AUD)||Champion||Prize (AUD)||Prize (USD)|