Holding a poker tournament in mainland China, particularly in Beijing, was always going to present unique challenges and even though it was sanctioned by the Beijing Municipal Bureau of Sports, updates on the progress of the inaugural Beijing Millions over the past week have been few and far between.
Unlike every other event on the Asia Pacific Poker Tour, this one kept a low profile with no live reporting team and no official photographer on hand to bring it to the world, however we can now reveal that China’s Chen Qin is champion of the very first Beijing Millions – taking home ¥675,000 for his efforts.
Despite limited press coming out of the Beijing Star Poker Club during the tournament, the Beijing Millions was a stunning success with a huge field of 2,732 players forking out the ¥3,000 entry fee to take their seat. That makes it the biggest ever tournament field outside of the United States as well as the biggest ever in a PokerStars run event, surpassing the 2,446 from last year’s Brazilian Series of Poker.
The field came together across six Day 1 flights but with a fast structure just 188 returned for Day 2. Those 188 were immediately in the money with a guaranteed minimum payout of ¥12,500. Among them were Bryan Huang, who eventually finished 50th for ¥23,750, and two-time Macau Poker Cup champion Celina Lin who finished 24th for ¥56,250.
However it would be an all-Chinese final table with Chen eventually prevailing in a short heads-up battle with Yang Zhang – who actually pocketed more cash than Chen as a result of an earlier deal – to claim the title.
The final table placings and payouts were as follows:
- Chen Qin – ¥675,000
- Yang Zhang – ¥700,000
- Tong Shen – ¥650,00
- Feng Bai – ¥587,000
- Jing Liu – ¥312,500
- Chen Hao – ¥250,000
- Qiang Liu – ¥205,000
- Hui Xu – ¥162,650
- Yuanye Chen – ¥125,000