Aussie Millions Day 1a: The APPT Journey
The 2014 Aussie Millions marks the start of Season 8 of the Asia Pacific Poker Tour (APPT) and it's been an amazing journey for the region's largest and most prestigious poker tour to this point. Who would've thought back in 2007 at that wild first event in Manila in the Philippines, that almost seven years later, the APPT would be partnering with the largest poker series in the Southern Hemisphere.
But then again, that thought was as much ambitious as it made perfect sense.
The APPT made inroads into Australia in Sydney through Seasons 1-4, before finally making the switch to the home of poker in Australia, at the Crown Poker Room in Melbourne, for Season 5 in 2011. The buy-in for that historic event was AU$5,000, with a field of 257 players conquered by future Australian Poker Hall of Famer Leo Boxell. Interestingly, Boxell also has an Aussie Millions Main Event final table to his credit, with a runner-up result in 2003 at what was then called the Australasian Poker Championships.
In Season 6, we saw the APPT Melbourne title head to the United Kingdom as Sam Razavi defeated a field of 257 players. That win launched Razavi on the local poker scene where he has since enjoyed great success, and a wonderful lifestyle, travelling to events throughout Asia. Razavi has also made the final table of the Aussie Millions Main Event when he took 6th place in 2011. Do you see a pattern developing here?
The APPT Melbourne event was restructured in Season 7 when a field of 309 came together for the $3,000 Main Event which was won by Billy "The Croc" Argyros. A veteran of the game down under, and an incredible character of the game, Argyros has done it all in poker, but one thing missing from the resume is an Aussie Millions Main Event final table. His best results came with a 21st place in 2005 and a 19th place in 2006.
Now here we are in 2014 and the launch of Season 8 of the APPT at the biggest event in Australia. The Aussie Millions. It makes great sense for the two entities to partner together. The Aussie Millions this year will receive an influx of players through online qualifiers and registrations, while the APPT is elevated to the highest tier of events in this region.
It's been an incredible journey for the APPT to reach this point, but you get the feeling that the full potential of the APPT/Aussie Millions partnership is still yet to even be reached.
Heath "TassieDevil" Chick is a Freelance Contributor for the PokerStars Blog.