Crown Australian Poker Championship
2006, Jason Kirk  

The last events of the Crown Australian Poker Championships featured two events that aren't yet typical of bigger tournaments in the US. Event #5 was the A$1,500+100 no-limit hold'em Speed Poker event. In speed poker, players have only 15 seconds to act once the action fell to them. The tournament followed a structure that was half freezeout and half-shootout - the last 36 entrants were divided into single tables of 6, the winner of each table met at the final table, and all the semi-finalists received prize money.

Then there was the Speed Poker Million Dollar Challenge. Ten players, including familiar names such as Mike Sexton, Barry Greenstein, and Jeffrey Lisandro, put up A$100,000 for this winner-take-all tournament - again, with only 15 seconds to make any given decision. Another familiar name stood alone atop the others when the game was finished: John Juanda walked away with the A$1,000,000 prize.

There are a few names that appear repeatedly in the results of this year's Crown Australian Poker Championships. Australian Steve Hegyi has taken down Events #6 and #9 already for over A$138,000 in winnings. That brings his career Aussie Millions earnings up to over A$240,000. Fellow Australian Angela Italiano took 4th in Event #2 for A$15,000 and 2nd in Event #6 for A$18,000, surpassing a A$10,000 win in a freeroll at the 2004 Crown Victorian Poker Championship as the largest victory of her tournament career. Arul Thillai - also of Australia - has made the final tables of three different events and taken home over A$73,000 already. This isn't Thillai's first big success - he won the 2005 Melbourne Poker Championship main event and the 2004 Aussie Millions Limit Omaha event, the latter which helped him to be named January 2004's PokerNetwork "Young Gun of the Month." We'll know soon whether any of these Aussie poker stars will cash again at the main event.

Event #5 - A$1,500+100 No-Limit Hold'em Speed Poker
Crown Australian Poker Championship, Crown Casino, Melbourne, Australia
A$306,000 prize pool, 204 entries

Place Name Prize
1 Ray Sanchez (Sweden) A$ 100,000
2 Scott Fischman (USA) A$ 50,000
3 Jethro Horowitz (Australia) A$ 32,400
4 Dane Coltman (Australia) A$ 20,000
5 Lee Nelson (New Zealand) A$ 15,000
6 Arul Thillai (Australia) A$ 10,000

2nd place Semi-Finalists - A$4,000 prize
Ricky Gov (Australia), Karl Klangefeldt (Sweden), Michael Turner (Australia), Emad Tahtouh (Australia), Mark Vos (Australia), Christian Schulz (Germany)
3rd place Semi-Finalists - A$3,000 prize
Matt Brown (Australia), Craig Duffy (Australia), Brian O'Sullivan (USA), Christian Hagen (Germany), Noah Boeken (Netherlands), Jesse Jones (USA)
4th place Semi-Finalists - A$2,500 prize
Dan Alspach (USA), Thomas Bihl (Germany), Gareth Edwards (Australia), Sam Li (Australia), Michael Guttman (Australia), John Dwyer (USA)
5th place Semi-Finalists - A$2,000 prize
Alex Rosser (Australia), Eugene Juczenko (Australia), Marek Kolk (Estonia), Sarne Lightman (Australia), Mourad Malki (Australia), Vincent Larosa
6th place Semi-Finalists - A$1,600 prize
Tony Duffield (UK), Tim Chambers (Australia), Jeffrey Lisandro (Italy), Peter Saward (Australia), Chris Harmer (Australia), Brian Hull (Australia)

Event #6 - A$1,000+100 Limit Omaha Hi-Lo
Crown Australian Poker Championship, Crown Casino, Melbourne, Australia
A$91,000 prize pool, 91 entries

1 Steve Hegyi (Australia) A$ 31,850
2 Angela Italiano (Australia) A$ 18,200
3 Vadim Pinsky (Australia) A$ 10,920
4 Kathy Liebert (USA) A$ 9,100
5 Andrew Fair (Canada) A$ 7,280
6 Nick Assioti (Australia) A$ 5,460
7 Brian Hull (Australia) A$ 3,640
8 Bill Riach (Australia) A$ 2,730
9 Alex Levy (Australia) A$ 1,820

Event #7 - A$1,000+150 No-Limit Hold'em with Rebuys
Crown Australian Poker Championship, Crown Casino, Melbourne, Australia
A$ prize pool, entries

1 Sam Khouiss (Australia) A$139,520
2 Martin Comer (Australia) A$82,840
3 Arul Thillai (Australia) A$47,960
4 Jovan Skekic (Australia) A$34,880
5 Tim Chambers (Australia) A$ 26,160
6 Gary Benson (Australia) A$ 21,800
7 Andrew Scott (Australia) A$ 17,440
8 Gary Ward (Australia) A$ 13,080
9 Peter Longmore (Australia) A$ 5,450
10 Frank Alampi (Australia) A$ 5,450
11 Russell Stevenson (Australia) A$ 5,450
12 Steve Wise (Sydney, Australia) A$ 5,450
13 Alan Purdy (UK) A$ 5,450
14 Mark Vos (Australia) A$ 4,360
15 Les Burke (Australia) A$ 4,360
16 Paul King (UK) A$ 4,360
17 Steve Accardo (Australia) A$ 4,360
18 Kristy Gazes (USA) A$ 4,360

Event #8 - A$3,000 +200 Pot-Limit Omaha with Rebuys
Crown Australian Poker Championship, Crown Casino, Melbourne, Australia
A$267,000 prize pool, 41 entries

1 Steve Hegyi (Australia) A$106,800
2 Willie Tann (UK) A$73,425
3 Michael Sampeiri (Australia) A$46,725
4 Blair Rodman (USA) A$26,700
5 Mel Judah (UK) A$13,350

Event #9 - A$100,000 No-Limit Hold'em Speed Poker Million Dollar Challenge
Crown Australian Poker Championship, Crown Casino, Melbourne, Australia
A$1,000,000 prize pool, 10 entries

1 John Juanda (USA) A$1,000,000
2 Jeffrey Lisandro (Italy)
3 Jason Gray (Australia)
4 Mike Sexton (USA)
5 Barry Greenstein (USA)
6 Tony Bloom (UK)

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