A 22-year-old university student from Indiana won the first leg of the inaugural PokerStars Asia-Pacific Poker Tour in Manila on Monday after three days of high-stakes gambling. Brett Parise win $180,000 in prize money and a place in December’s grand final in Sydney.
Parise, a student of political science and economics at the University of California, was the youngest player in the final nine. More than 200 players from 30 countries had started the three day event. Favorites Joseph Hachem, World Series of Poker champion in 2005, and Vanessa Rousso, one of the stars of the American poker circuit, were eliminated on the first day. Parise, who has been playing poker since he was 18, won his seat in the Asia Pacific Poker Tour (APPT) through a free online competition.
His mother, Jayne, said she did not know her son had won his trip to Manila “until he told me. I guess his dad will go with him to Sydney now.” All nine finalists shared a pool of $500,000 in prize money. Parise said he saw the game as a good way of making money but he doubted whether he would take it up full time. “I’ll finish my degree but I don’t have any idea what I will do after that. I like poker but it won’t be my life,” he said.
The Final Results:
- 1. Brett Parise (USA) $179,775
- 2. Ira Blumenthal (Thailand) $113,858
- 3. Nicholas Bamman (USA) $62,921
- 4. Van Marcus (Australia) $44,940
- 5. Maor Feldinger (Isreal) $35,955
- 6. Roger Spets (Sweden) $26,966
- 7. Bas van Liere (Netherlands) $20,974
- 8. Kazuhiro Sato (Japan) $14,981
- 9. Derrick Hernandez (Philippines) $11,386
- 10. Steve Junhee Yea (South Korea) $8390
- 11. Carlo Gosselin (Thailand) $8390
- 12. D’amor Nario (Philippines) $8390
- 13. Alexander Fitzgerald (USA) $5993
- 14. Carlos Lascano (Philippines) $5993
- 15. Ronald Javier (Philippines) $5993
- 16. Se Jin Lee (South Korea) $5993
- 17. Eric Sia $4794
- 18. Nicolas Chouity (Lebanon) $4794
- 19. Steven Djingga (Indonesia) $4794
- 20. Kelly Flynn (USA) $4794
- 21. Seung Soo Jeon (South Korea) $4794
- 22. Ronald Singson $4794
- 23. Jean-Marc Hauducoeur (France) $4794
- 24. Dan Idema (Canada) $4794
The next leg of the APPT takes place in Seoul in September and two other venues in Asia yet to be decided before finishing up in Sydney.