It's All Gold for 888poker Pros at the 2013 WSOP APAC
By Hyacinth Swansonsean@888poker
May 9, 2013 5:29 PM CDT
888poker’s ambassadors, online qualifiers and sponsored pros underlined 888pokers sponsorship deal with the World Series of Poker (WSOP) by winning 3 of the 5 WSOP bracelets that were on offer in the inaugural WSOP Asia Pacific.

The first-ever WSOP event on the Asia-Pacific continent was held between April 4th and April 15th 2013 at the Crown Melbourne in Melbourne, Australia. With only five WSOP gold bracelets up for grabs, it was destined to attract only the best and fiercest poker competition.

For 888poker Pros, the 2013 World Series of Poker Asia Pacific tournament was a wild success. Starting with Event #1, the 888poker Team wasted no time making their mark.

Event #1, the No-Limit Hold'em “Accumulator” had a AUD $1,000 buy-in plus $100 entry fee. It shaped up to be a tough battle, with 2010 WSOP Main Event Champion Jonathan Duhamel at the final table. However, Team 888poker  Pro Bryan Piccioli was not to be outdone. He bested a group of solid players, that included Jeremy Ausmus and Jonathan Karamalikis to take 888's first gold.

High-stakes were in the mix at the final table of  WSOP APAC Event #2, AUD $1,650 Pot Limit Omaha. Team 888poker high-stakes Pro, Jim “MrBigQueso” Collopy found himself rubbing shoulders with established equals Dan Shak, and Marvin Rettenmaier at the final table. But, Collopy with a sizeable chip lead going in, survived the shark attacks to take down the title and notch up another 888poker win. 

Event #4, the No-Limit Hold'em 6-Max event with a AUD $5,000 buy-in brought success for the Aussies and for Poker Team 888. Australian Poker Pro, Aaron Lim found himself in good company by becoming the sixth Aussie to win a WSOP bracelet, joining the likes of Joe Hachem and Mel Judah.

With three golds under their belt Team 888poker Pros were confident heading into the final event of the series. The Caesars Cup tournament pitted Team Europe – European players, Team Americas – American (both North and South) players and Team Asia Pacific, against each other.

It's a free event, with no money at stake, however, with only the best players invited to play, there is a massive amount of chest-thumping and bravado to fight for.

888poker Pro, Sam Holden led Team Europe with fellow poker professionals, Sam Trickett, Dominik Nitsche, Marvin Rettenmaier and Philipp Gruissem, by his side. The final table showdown matched Sam up against Team Americas' Greg Merson.

In one epic hand Merson requested a time out, facing an all-in shove from Team Europe. After conferring with fellow team mates, Ivey and Hellmuth he pulled trigger and made the call – going against Hellmuth's advice. Sam Holden's Ace-Seven held against Merson's Queen-Nine and Team Europe doubled up.

The Teams played even for a few more hands before getting it all into the middle. Team Europe held Pocket Tens and the Americas tabled Queen-Jack off-suit. Then Tens held up, leaving Team Americas crippled. The very next hand Sam Holden woke up with Pocket Eights and instantly called Merson's raise all-in. The board brought no salvation to Team Americas and Team Europe secured the win and the Cup.

All in all Team 888poker’s ambassadors, qualifiers and pros made a great showing at the very first 2013 WSOP Asia Pacific tournament. Roll on 2014!