Poker festivals come and go but some of them manage to stay in players’ hearts throughout the entire year bringing back the memories of winnings and challenging levels. John Thomson is the most recent winner in The Star Sydney Championships A$5k Challenge event who managed to make it all the way to the top and the first-place prize amounting to some A$195,000.
It could be recalled that yesterday witnessed the final second day of action for this fourth event of the festival’s rich schedule. Players remaining on the felt made their way to the final table of nine prepared for the top prizes available. Promising participants to the liking of Corey Kempson, Matthew Wakeman, and Kim Pizanias were among the players who succeeded in making it this far and they had their eyes set on the prize.
Slowly but surely their number was reduced over the span of the final table and the first one to exit was Michael Asad who was one of the promising players on the felt. He claimed the ninth position on the official leader board which brought him a sweet payday of A$17,400 for his deep run. Throughout the Final Table Wakeman witnessed a speedy drop in his chip stack after a battle against Thomson which resulted in Wakeman falling to 420,000 in chips at a crucial point of the tournament.
Meanwhile, Thomson reached some 1,200,000 in chips and following closely the temporary chip leader Kempson, who had some 1,500,000 to his name when there were only four players remaining on the felt. Even though he had the chance to go further, Kempson was soon eliminated by the eventual winner of this event and bagged some A$64,000 for the fourth position. Thomson continued showcasing his skills with more eliminations, as he was responsible for the elimination of Wakeman.
Generous Payouts for the Top Players Remaining
The latter had to settle for the third position on the official leader board and this brought him some A$87,000. This is how the poker action reached its heads-up duel stage where Thomson faced his friend Zhi Hong Ma in a heated battle for the throne. The runner-up position granted Ma a consolation prize of A$120,000.
Gentleman John, as the winner is commonly referred to at the Star Poker Room managed to outplay his rival and made it all the way to the top of the official leader board of this event. Going this far proves that his poker skills are unrivaled even if there are other proficient players on the felt. He has some $259,395 in total live earnings, a large part of which have been claimed at this very venue.
His first cash payout of this poker festival was claimed at the Opening Event where he reached the 48th position for A$1,510. In the meantime, this Friday witnessed the official Day 1 of the eagerly anticipated Monster Stack Event which is going to grant its winner some A$77,093 for his deep run in the tournament.
Some 328 players have registered for participation in this iconic event which resulted in a total prize pool amounting to A$328,000. Only the top 33 positions on the rank list would receive cash payouts, which is a motivation enough for them to go far. Familiar names such as Christina Hia, the winner at the Ladies Event, Ken Demlakian, who made it far in the A$5k Challenge event could also be seen in this first day of action.