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Your Complete Guide to the 2013 WSOP APAC
The World Series of Poker is expanding for the first time in five years and from April 4-15 the poker world will have it eyes trained again on Melbourne, Australia.
Already a renowned poker hotspot, the Crown Casino will play host to a total of seven new events with five WSOP bracelets up for grabs.
As one of the most exciting additions to the international poker circuit, WSOP APAC will finally give players in Asia and Australia the chance to play for a gold bracelet without crossing an entire ocean.
PokerListings will of course be there as we’re the official live reporting partner for 2013 WSOP APAC. We’ll be dealing out up-to-the-minute updates, chip counts, photos, video interviews and news straight from the tournament floor not to mention hosting the exclusive live stream.
Short on info about the WSOP APAC? The following guide should get you right up to speed.
Crown Casino is widely regarded as one of the best places to play poker in the world.
The facility itself is the biggest casino complex in the Southern Hemisphere and it features numerous restaurants, three different hotels, several night clubs, a movie theater, pools, tennis courts and fountains that shoot flames. Yes, fountains that shoot flames.
The Crown poker room is massive with over 70 tables and, perhaps even better, the casino has a reputation for treating poker players very, very well. Perhaps the only downside of the poker room is that it’s underground, which means you won’t be catching any of that Australian sun.
The poker room is easy to find as it’s under the food court near the entrance of the hotel.
Of course the Crown Casino is also home to another massive tournament series you may have heard about: the Aussie Millions.
One of the biggest independent poker series in the world, the Aussie Millions has awarded millions and produced champions such as Gus Hansen, Tony Bloom, Lee Nelson and Alexander Kostritsyn.
Suffice to say, Crown is very experienced running high-end poker tournaments.
The 2013 WSOP APAC will feature seven events in total -- five awarding prestigious WSOP gold bracelets.
Events will range in buy-ins from $1,100 for the No-Limit Hold’em Accumulator to $50,000 for the high roller (all dollars in AUD).
PokerListings.com will be providing official live coverage of each event so keep it locked here for all your up-to-the-minute updates.
Here’s a quick look at each event:
Event: 1 No-Limit Hold’em Accumulator
When: April 4-8, 2013 (three starting days)
This one is going to be huge. It’s the lowest buy-in tournament and the only one with multiple starting days.
Every Australian poker player with a bankroll (and several without) will take a shot at this one, which should make for a very large volume event.
Event 2: Pot-Limit Omaha
When: April 7-9, 2013
Besides the Mixed Event, Event 2 is the only non-Hold’em event at WSOP APAC so there should be a certain PLO-loving crowd that hits this one hard.
PLO events generally do well in Europe and Australia doesn’t shy away from the four-card game either.
Event 3: Mixed Event
When: April 8-10, 2013
Event 3 is the only tournament that will include Stud or high-low games so expect some old-school Australian poker pros to play.
There will also be plenty of oversea pros as this tournament will likely be the easiest way to win a bracelet in Australia -- or at least it will have the smallest field.
Event 4: No-Limit Hold’em 6-Max
When: April 9-11, 2013
Event 4 could be the most underrated event of the entire WSOP APAC. It’s a $5,000 event, which usually hits a sweet spot in buy-in level where almost every single pro will play.
Recreational players will be a little more selective, but the $5k NLHE event is always great at the WSOP in Las Vegas and we expect an excellent final table out of this one.
Event 5: No-Limit Hold’em Main Event
When: April 11-15, 2013
The most prestigious event at any World Series, expect stacked tables, a final nine with several big names in it and a 500+ player field to create a memorable debut winner.
When: April 13-14, 2013
The single biggest question about this event is whether the famous Asian businessmen who play in Macau will make their way out for this tournament. They tend to single-handedly decide whether super high roller events draw well as they bring numerous pros to the tables with their action-heavy style. Expect all the big names to play.
Event: Caesars Cup
When: April 14, 2013
The Caesars Cup is always a bit of an oddity in the poker world because poker is not exactly a team-sport. It’s also invitation only.
But it should be pretty interesting this time around with Phil Ivey captaining Team Americas.
Joe Hachem will captain Team Asia-Pacific and Sam Trickett Team Europe.
There will be plenty of heavy hitters in attendance with Phil Hellmuth, Daniel Negreanu, Phil Ivey, Sam Trickett and more all making their way across the Pacific to play the series.
There are also quite a few Americans already in Melbourne so that they can play online poker in the days leading up to the WSOP APAC.
Hellmuth, who won the 2012 WSOPE Main Event, is particularly excited about the new series, if a bit hesitant about the overall impact on his world-leading bracelet total.
“I’m planning on playing every event,” he said. "On one hand I feel like they are spreading it a little thin, on the other hand I feel like it’s good for the growth of poker. So I don’t really know.
"It’s probably good for poker, but I don’t want the World Series of Poker to be spread too thin. So, that’s where I stand."
No Australian poker tournament would be complete without 2005 WSOP Main Event Champ Joe Hachem, and he will most certainly be attending the historic tournament.
Of course Australian poker goes far beyond Joe Hachem and you should check out our Players to Watch feature that highlights the work of James Obst, Jonathan Karamalikis, Jackie Glazier and others.
What to Expect
As with all new events it’s hard to say exactly what the turnout will be like.
There has been speculation among poker insiders that because the Aussie Millions happened a relatively short time ago there will be more pros chasing bracelets than recreational players.
That seems to match up with what most pros are thinking.
“I have no idea what numbers it will get,” said 2012 WSOP October Niner Russell Thomas.
“Perhaps they are expecting lower numbers than the Aussie Millions because they are only offering one Day 1 for the 10k event as opposed to three day 1s for the Aussie Millions main event.
"If I had to guess… I think the main event will get 500 players -- a little less than the 623 the Aussie Millions Main had.”
That said, there are some low buy-in events and the chance to win a bracelet in their own backyard has to be pretty appealing to Australian poker players.
The opening event – a $1,100 No-Limit Hold’em tournament – should generate a massive field.
Tune in to PokerListings.com right here starting Wednesday for all the action!