The Asian Poker Tour is set to make its first ever appearance in Japan next year for the APT Tokyo event at the Casino Stadium Tokyo from February 1 to February 11. However, one major change is making the millionaires stay away during these tournaments, as players are competing for future tournament entries, rather than cash prizes.
The first stop will be in Japan, in which it will award the top finishers with entries into tournaments that are intertwined with the APT Philippines series that takes place at the end of April, beginning of May, during Japan’s Golden Week.
By doing so, the series becomes a progression of satellite tournaments, while the APT Tokyo Main Event awarding the winner to a direct entry into three tournaments at APT Philippines: the Main Event, as well as the Championships Event and the High Rollers tournament.
The following three finishers will earn smaller packages that will includes an APT Philippines Main Event seat, while winners of other tournaments in Tokyo will win various mixes of entries to events in the Philippines stop.
APT’s move is the latest newcomer for what Cards Chat says is becoming “an increasingly active Japanese poker scene,” as the World Poker Tour held its second ever event in Japan, with Shingo Endo winning the WPT Japan Main Event,in which he earned $13,000 in WPT Passport credit, capable of being used at other WPT events worldwide.
The major poker tournament series coming to Japan comes after the country recently passed legislation that allows up to three integrated resorts to be built, while officials hope the first casinos will be open by 2025. It is likely that when those casinos launch, there will be poker rooms. Although, the Japanese government initially didn’t include poker in the list of approved games for their resorts, but changed their minds after the success of the first WPT event in the country earlier this year. If the Japanese market is worth as much as expected, the country could quite easily become a hose for more major poker tournaments.