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2016 Card Player Player of the Year Race -- Ari Engel In Front

A Look At The Biggest Poker Tournament Results Of The Week


Another action-packed January on the tournament circuit is now in the books. As one would expect, the major tournaments that wrapped up the first month of the year have made some big changes to the top of the leader board in the Card Player Player of the year race. 2016 Here is a look at the tournaments that made the biggest impact on the overall standings this week:

2016 Aussie Millions Main Event

Ari EngelIn the mid 2000’s a $10,000 buy-in event with a field well over 500 players was a fairly common occurrence. In recent years the poker tournament landscape has shifted so that more main event’s have adopted $5,000 buy-ins or lower, while catering to the high stakes community with high roller events. The $10,000 price point may be less common, but it is far from extinct. This year’s Aussie Millions $10,600 AUD no-limit hold’em main event proved that in a big way when 732 players turned out to build a total prize pool of $7,320,000 AUD ($5,183,804 USD).

Ari Engel came out on top in the end, defeating Tony Dunst heads-up to capture the title, the first-place prize of $1.6 million AUD ($1,120,000 USD) and 2,280 Player of the Year points. This was already his fourth final table finish of the year, with all of his prior scores coming in side events down under and at the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure. As a result of this huge win he was catapulted into the outright lead in the standings with 2,614 points.

Dunst earned 1,900 as the runner-up, enough on it’s own to see him move into third place in the POY rankings. Third place finisher Samantha Abernathy climbed into fourth place in the standings, with her 1,520 combining with the 320 points she earned for another third place finish in a Aussie Millions prelim. Alex Lynskey’s fourth-place finish was enough to see him jump to 13th in the standings as well.

2016 Aussie Millions $100,000 High Roller

Fabian QuossThe Aussie Millions has been one of the driving forces in the evolution and proliferation of super high roller events. Their $100,000 challenge was one of the first event of it’s kind, and the trailblazing tournament remains one of the biggest of the year. This year the Aussie Millions $100,000 challenge drew 41 total entries to build a $4,018,000 AUD ($2,845,427 USD) prize pool.

The top six finishers made the money, but the biggest payout of all went out to eventual Fabian Quoss. The German poker pro was awarded $1,446,480 AUD ($1,012,536 USD) and 600 POY points. Fourth-place finisher Connor Drinan climbed into 13th place in the standings as a result of his deep run, which earned him 300 POY points. Neither player was done making making big scores down under, though. See the $250,000 high roller recap below to learn more about that.

Sixth-place finisher Fedor Holz was also at his third final table of the year, including winning the WPT Philippines $200,000 high roller, and moved into a tie for 21st place in the overall rankings with Isaac Haxton.

2016 Aussie Millions $250,000 High Roller

Steve O'DwyerThe Aussie Millions festival wrapped up with the biggest buy-in event on the schedule, the $250,000 K Boutique $250,000 Challenge. A total of 16 entries were made in the event, which sported a quarter-million Australian dollar buy-in.

Steve O’Dwyer,
just three weeks removed from a win in the $50,000 high roller at the PCA, emerged victorious yet again. The American born pro now based out of Ireland earned $951,960 AUD ($744,829 USD) and 600 points for the win, climbing into second place on the leader board with 2,178 points earned in the month of January. O’Dwyer ended 2015 in seventh place in the POY standings and looks to be off to a great start in improving on that finish, with the two aforementioned titles and two more final table finishes, one in the WPT Philippines $200,000 buy-in (4th for $953,700) and another in the Aussie Millions $25,000 AUD high roller (4th – $184,464).

David Peters finished second in this event for $889,236 AUD ($622,465 USD) and 500 points. This was his third high roller final table finish of the year, having finished fifth in the PCA $100,000 buy-in and second in the WPT Philippines $200,000 event. He has accumulated 1,250 points and $3,392,805 in earnings already this year, moving into 12th in the rankings as well.

Connor Drinan finished third in this event, earnings another $1,021,909 AUD ($715,336 USD) and 400 POY points. He now sits in eighth place in the POY standings. Fabian Quoss finished fourth just days after winning the $100,000 event, adding another $956,896 AUD ($669,827 USD) and 300 points. With his two huge scores down under Quoss has climbed to 25th place.

Here is a look at the current top 20 in the POY standings:

Rank Player POY Points Earnings
1 Ari Engel 2,614 $1,148,102
2 Steve O’Dwyer 2,178 $2,820,030
3 Tony Dunst 1,900 $700,000
4 Samantha Abernathy 1,840 $448,532
5 Michael Watson 1,824 $728,325
6 Anthony Gregg 1,520 $612,175
7 Nick Maimone 1,444 $1,007,060
8 Connor Drinan 1,428 $1,907,147
9 Sean Winter 1,295 $966,180
10 Chance Kornuth 1,260 $746,172
11 Phillip McAllister 1,252 $362,060
12 David Peters 1,250 $3,392,805
13 Alex Lynskey 1,140 $311,500
14 Ivan Luca 1,108 $664,350
15 Salomon Ponte 1,080 $344,420
15 Andy Philachack 1,080 $393,188
17 David Yan 1,060 $105,882
18 Igor Kurganov 1,010 $465,006
19 Kevin Blackwood 960 $192,710
20 Dylan Honeyman 950 $238,000