This was the first time in history of APPT events that an event was held in Queenstown. With players battling for a share of the huge prize pool (in fact the largest ever recorded in this city) of NZD$342,900 with a near 6 figure payday for first place (NZD$94,300).
It took just about 12 hours for the final table to throw up the winner and it wasn't as easy as that, given that 4 hours from those 12 was the headsup battle between New Zealans's very own Matt Yates going up against Germany’s Marcel Schreiner for the title and the cash.
Schreiner had been putting in a consistent display of poker over the 3 days of the tournament always ending up the chipleader at the end of each day's play. So it was no surprise that he produced his best game at the final table and eventually took home the title.
Some of the finest players from the region were at the felt when the final table started and these included the likes of Jonathan Karamalikis, Hugh Cohen and Tom Grigg. These three ended up in 9th, 8th and 6th place eventually and by then several hours had already passed since we had got into the final table.
Heads-up play between Schreiner and Yates commenced with both players on relatively similar sized stacks. However about two hours into headsup, Schreiner displayed exactly why he had been finishing as the chipleader consistently on each day. He asserted his dominance in the match and continuously built up his stack with a series of pots to take on a very healthy lead over Yates.
A little over 180 hands were played in headsup and for the most part, Schreiner was ahead in chips. That changed in the middle when the biggest hand of the night occurred. Schreiner and Yates had all of their money in the pot with the board showing . In this hand, Yates's higher kicker prevailed against Schreiner's . And with the river producing nothing worthy, Yates finally managed to pull in a massive pot and with it the chiplead.
That lead however was short-lived as Schreiner went about chipping away at Yates' stack and slowly managed to get back to having the bigger stack. With the lead, the final hand of the tournament saw the all-in from Yates holding being brutally dominated by Schreiner's . If there any chance at all for Yates, it was extinguished a flop of hit the felt. Schreiner's full house on the flop ensured that Yates' hand was completely drawing dead and he would send his opponent home in second place.
Final Table Results
|7||Xiao Dong Xia||$16,290|
It seems that Queenstown has charmed one and all including the first ever APPT Queenstown champion in Marcel Schreiner. Most everyone was of the opinion that Queenstown could turn out to be one of the most popular on the tour offering not just a great poker event but the beautiful city of Queenstown being something to marvel at while away from the felt.