Recently PokerStars rocked the poker world by announcing that their various poker tours will be consolidate into two entities: PokerStars Festival events and PokerStars Championship.
Crown Melbourne announced, in an unexpected manner, they will not partner with the online poker giant at live events anymore.
Joel Williams, Crown Melbourne Tournament Director, said the following on this matter:
“Crown Melbourne can confirm that the 2016 Asia- Pacific Poker Tour (APPT) Melbourne, set to take place on Thursday October 6, 2016, will be the final APPT event to be held in Melbourne. Crown Melbourne can also confirm that the 2017 Aussie Million Poke Championship will revert to a stand-alone event.”
It appears to be an amicable split. Crown Melbourne thanked the APPT for their support and also disclosed that all wins from PokerStars satellite would be honored.
In 1998, the Aussie Million held its first event and became the Southern Hemisphere’s premiere poker event. Back in 2013, the event became a part of PokerStars’ APPT, after stoping its partnership deal with Betfair.
PokerStars sponsorship lasted three years and was mutually beneficial.
The Partnership and the Rise
The field grew from 629 to 668 players in the first year of the partnership. That year Ami Barer won the title and $1,6 million AUD.
In 2014, attendance decreased, that year Manny Stravropoulos defeated a field of 648 players and left the event with $1,385,500 AUD. Last year, however, things rebounded in a big way, the field grow to 732 players and Ari Engel left with $1,6 million AUD after defeating Tony Dunst.
With the completion of the APPT Melbourne in October, the partnership between crown and PokerStars will come to an end.
From January 11-30, Aussie Millions 2017 will hold sixteen official championship events.