Rags to Riches at the Macau Poker Festival

Rags to riches tales are what make the world of sport such a fascinating and intriguing thing. For every tale of glory, there are twenty of woe and hardship. However, it is nice to know that sometimes fairytales can happen, and this is the case with 23-year-old Frenchman Adrien Allain.

Allain recently scooped the main event prize of 3,035,000 Hong Kong Dollars (£240,196) at the 2009 Asian Poker Tour Macau Festival. The amazing thing regarding Allain’s win is that he qualified for the tournament by chance, through a $5 lottery tournament.

Allain’s previous big win was $8,000 Dollars, competing online. The 23 year old travelled all the way to Macau and beat the big boys at their own game in their own domain. Allain now plans to turn professional, with the winnings allowing him to push towards a career he desperately wants. After his win, Allain said, “I’m overwhelmed, this is so wonderful. I qualified for this tournament through a $5 lottery tournament on PKR and end up beating all these top players. Vive La France!”

The young Frenchman beat some formidable competition on the day, such as Casey Kastle, JC Tran and David Steicke. Allain’s story gives hope to every amateur online poker player out there who believes they have what it takes to compete with the superstars. It is all about taking your chance and believing in your ability.

There was no jealously towards Allain from the professionals at the table, only congrats and overwhelming support. Even Poker Pack star JC Tran (who came third) was full of praise for the young man, “It has been a great 12 day festival for The Poker Pack. It’s disappointing not to take down the Main Event but congratulations to Allain, he played good poker and is a deserving champion. To take down such a major tournament for just $5 is quite something, and there’s no doubt he has great potential.”

Allain totally dominated the table, which is quite surprising for one so young and inexperienced. This is an amazing achievement when you consider the 23 year old had never competed in a major tournament before and managed to keep a cool head under pressure. Onlookers told how calm and uninhibited the Frenchman was, and how one couldn’t possibly imagine he was a rookie.

Chris Parker, Asian Poker Tour CEO, also extended his congratulations to Allain, along with a handful of French, flag waving supporters who were with their countryman every step of the way. As the day went on, the supporters grew and the atmosphere became highly charged as usual. The closing ceremony at the Starworld Hotel and Casino was also packed out with well wishers wanting to sneak a peek at the next big thing.

The greatest honour that we can bestow upon the young man from Rennes was that he accepted the accolades in modest spirit, showing class and style for such an inexperienced man.

It just goes to show that determination, dedication, self-belief, ability and a sprinkling of luck can open doors and make fairytales come true.

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