The Asia Player of the Year has been awarded each year since 2009. The Asian poker player to excel in the PokerStars Asia Circuit throughout the year is named as Player of the Year to enjoy the accolades accompanying that title. And each Asia Player of the Year has their name engraved on the one and only APOY trophy that is located at the PokerStars LIVE Macau poker room at City of Dreams Macau.
The best Asian player of the year is determined by the APOY Leaderboard, which takes into consideration players’ performance in PokerStars-sponsored tournaments that take place on Asian soil throughout the year. By players’ performance we mean how a given player finishes in one tournament or another, how much entries that event has, and what buy-in fee it features. Players receive points for each of these three factors and the more points they collect, the higher they climb in the APOY Leaderboard.
This year’s leaderboard included PokerStars-branded live tournaments that took place in the period between November 27, 2017 and August 12, 2018. Aside from having their name engraved on the special trophy, this year’s winner will also be awarded the amount of $20,000.
The Philippines Celebrates Its First Asia Player of the Year
Philippine poker pro Mike Takayama topped this year’s APOY Leaderboard with a total of 10,230 points. The player has had a killer year so far, cashing in 30 different live tournaments. In addition, he cashed in a large number of the official Asia Player of the Year Events throughout the season.
At the age of 29, Takayama has become his homeland’s first Asia Player of the Year since the ranking was first established in 2009. And with 10,230 points collected over the span of the 2017/2018 season, he is well ahead of the player who occupies the leaderboard’s runner-up spot. Alexis Lim is the player to rank second with 5,931 points.
Most prominently, Takayama won the PokerStars LIVE Manila Super Series 5 PHP10,000 Main Event for a cash prize of PHP931,800 (approx. $17,875) and a Platinum Pass for the upcoming 2019 PCA Poker Players Championship. He topped the tournament’s field in February, this year.
In May, he finished third in the PokerStars LIVE Manila Super Series 7 PHP10,000 Main Event to collect the amount of PHP525,000 and more points for his APOY score.
Overall, Takayama is his home country’s third most profitable player in terms of live tournament earnings generated. His winnings currently amount to a little under $1 million. The poker professional scored his career’s largest cash of nearly $198,568 this summer during the 2018 edition of the World Series of Poker. The player bested the $1,000 No-Limit Hold’em Super Turbo Bounty and his triumph also secured him with his first-ever gold bracelet from the series.
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