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Sung Joo Hyun Talks About His Breakout Year On The Poker Tournament Circuit

Sung Joo Hyun after winning the WPTDeepStacks Venetian main event. Credit: WPT/Joe Giron

Sung Joo Hyun has handiest 16 recorded tournament cashes to his title. Nonetheless, what Hyun’s résumé may per chance presumably merely lack in quantity, is bigger than made up for in quality.

The 30-Three hundred and sixty five days-worn South Korean has save together an excellent record of accomplishments, together with successful a World Sequence of Poker gold bracelet and amassing bigger than seven figures in tournament earnings with quite a lot of enormous titles won alongside the fashion.

Hyun became once born and raised in Seoul, and after graduating from the Hankuk University of Foreign Experiences, he accomplished the compulsory military carrier required of younger South Korean males, serving for 2 years.

In present years, he has grown more enthusiastic on poker, making his design to main tournaments across the arena. His first recorded money came at the 2015 WSOP. Handsome three years later, he made the closing desk of the $1,111 purchase-in Puny One For One Drop match at the summer series, ending fourth for his first six-figure are residing rating of $189,098.

At some level of closing Three hundred and sixty five days’s are residing poker shutdown, Hyun overcame a topic of two,307 entries in a 2020 WSOP On-line $500 purchase-in no-restrict select’em match to impress his dream of successful a bracelet. He took dwelling $161,898 as the champion, and changed into factual the third South Korean participant ever to steal a bracelet, becoming a member of Sejin Park who won the 2019 Colossus match, and Jiyoung Kim who took down the Ladies match title that identical Three hundred and sixty five days.

After are residing tournament poker made its return, Hyun made a prolonged outing to Las Vegas to play in quite a lot of main events. He walked away with two titles and bigger than half a million bucks in earnings.

Hyun after taking down the Wynn Spring Classic main eventHyun’s first title bustle of 2021 came in the February World Poker Tour DeepStacks $1,600 purchase-in no-restrict select’em major match held at The Venetian Resort Las Vegas. The match attracted 812 entries, and after four days of action Hyun became once the closing participant standing. He became once awarded $208,335 as the champion, which became once a very great rating of his profession at the time.

That non-public fable handiest stood for spherical six weeks, even though. In the center of March, Hyun overcame a topic of 614 entries to emerge victorious in the Wynn Spring Classic $3,500 purchase-in major match. Hyun struck a heads-up deal to stable the title and the head payday of $323,409. The profession-handiest rating increased his lifetime earnings to $1,033,602.

Hyun became once awarded a total of two,172 Card Participant Participant of the Year points for these two title runs, ample to glance him climb into second order on the 2021 POY trip leaderboard. We currently caught up with Hyun to discuss how he found the sport, the poker scene in South Korea, and his scorching originate to the 2021 POY trip.

Card Participant: Can you order about how you found poker?

Sung Joo Hyun: My first stumble upon with poker became once right through a excessive college pageant. The English majors had been doing something to suggest Las Vegas, and that’s where I first seen the sport being performed and tried it out myself. It became once performed with flawed money, nonetheless I if truth be told fell into it.

CP: What regarding the sport did you win though-provoking?

SJH: I felt cherish it became once a tiny version of the arena that forces us to create decisions in every hand and exercise our future ourselves.

CP: Originate you specialise in you’ve got any particular skills or personality traits that helped you excel at poker?

SJH: I are inclined to be in how of us mediate psychologically about obvious stuff. It makes me tired infrequently, nonetheless that addiction did encourage me in my sport in the previous. On the second, even though, I’m focusing more on the theoretical capability.

CP: Originate you’ve got a background taking half in varied strategy games or sports activities?

SJH: Certain. I most traditional taking half in soccer and Starcraft. I became once pretty aggressive, and I couldn’t focal level on anything else after shedding.

CP: How did you transition from taking half in for enjoyable to taking it more seriously? Was once the dedication to play bigger events supported by your family, or became once it sophisticated for them to designate?

SJH: Looking out at movies from tournaments cherish the World Sequence of Poker and World Poker Tour always create me desire to fly to Vegas. I saved it a secret except my first outing to the U.S. in repeat to play. I cashed my first match, and became once ready to level every detail about how enjoyable and special poker is to me. Fortunately, my folks had been supportive.

CP: What’s the notion of poker and poker avid gamers in Korea?

Hyun playing in the 2021 CPPT Venetian main eventSJH: The droll ingredient is that we own now poker rooms in basically the most considerable casinos spherical our nation, nonetheless handiest foreigners are allowed to play. On the assorted hand, a host of are residing tournaments are held at a locations known as select’em pubs. Overall, the poker scene is rising, nonetheless I if truth be told desire that our government would open poker rooms to Koreans apart from to the foreign avid gamers.

As we know, poker is a sport of skill. Handsome due to of us can lose money at poker doesn’t interpret the sport being banned for Koreans. There are a complete bunch ways which are moral for folks to burn their money away if they are irresponsible.

CP: What’s the poker community cherish in Korea?

SJH: It’s rising for definite, with some online tournament apps and are residing tournaments apart from to some YouTube impart, cherish my ‘ArtePokerTV’ channel. There are communities taking half in poker and rooting for avid gamers who bustle deep in big tournaments. Nonetheless, studywise, I’d articulate the community is reasonably worn.

CP: How would you hope the poker scene in Korea modifications transferring forward?

SJH: Allowing domestic of us to play tournaments in the casinos would be my hope, basically, nonetheless I would additionally cherish it if our of us knew more regarding the sport in current.

CP: How did you pass up the ranks?

SJH: I performed mostly are residing games, from $500 up to $10,000 tournaments, transferring up and down time and but all any other time. I started to determine on online more seriously in 2020, taking half in mid- to excessive-stakes with purchase-ins from $100 to $1,000.

I performed mostly in the WSOP events, as my first goal became once to secure a WSOP title. Nonetheless I mediate nothing factual happens cherish that. I obtained that bracelet after I started crushing mid-stakes tournaments. Now I desire to put together myself and be willing to play higher stakes. I’m definite that I desire more improvement.

CP: Bear there been any setbacks for your avenue to improvement?

SJH: Certain. I became once doing okay in each are residing money games and tournaments up except 2018. Once I started taking poker training applications, which became once 2019, I struggled in each. I guess I needed more time to alter myself to what I had learned.

CP: Can you repeat me regarding the journey of successful a WSOP On-line bracelet in 2020? Was once it engaging to steal a bracelet, even if it became once now not at the Rio with fans and a rail and all that?

SJH: It became once my second time at a WSOP closing desk, and I knew that this probability doesn’t attain in total. I saved on asserting to myself that I needed to steal it. I had my of us searching at the sport and cheering for me through messenger apps. I would mediate successful are residing would be more engaging, nonetheless I don’t desire to demand for too powerful. I became once ecstatic ample.

CP: I heard that you simply poke your tournament play and own started an internet vlog.

SJH: I started in 2020, which became once my turning level in online tournaments. I started due to it became once very onerous to win successful avid gamers from my town who wished to encourage every varied and own enjoyable together. Doing vlogs wasn’t my conception at the delivery, nonetheless taking down two trophies for sure made me change my mind. Overall, I would make a choice to encourage create this sport changed into more standard in Korea.

Hyun's WPTDeepStacks Venetian main event winner photo. Credit: WPT/Joe Giron

CP: What attain you attribute your success on the are residing tournament scene to to this level in 2021?

SJH: To begin with, loving this sport results in all the pieces. After I’m now not taking half in, I seek poker applications and impart from coaches cherish bencb (online tournament star Benjamin Rolle) and Pokercode (Fedor Holz’s training website). I feel about that every second I spend on finding out poker helps me by some capability. I’m the next participant than sooner than, yes, nonetheless there is nonetheless a pleasant distance to head. Taking half in online changed my sport a lot, and searching at lawful poker impart became once what if truth be told resulted in my leap forward.

CP: Your two big wins in the early months of this Three hundred and sixty five days each took order in Las Vegas. What led you to shuttle to the U.S. for these are residing events?

SJH: I became once merely bored with grinding online, and wished to factual fly someplace stable. And I heard that they’ve some tournaments working, so why now not Vegas?

CP: What attain these victories suggest for you transferring forward? Will you continue to play more are residing events?

SJH: I mediate these results are kind of cherish dietary vitamins for my complete poker plod; I’m factual getting started. I will continue to play wherever I will attain so safely.

CP: Originate you’ve got any goals for the following couple of years?

SJH: I would make a choice to create this very ideal sport more standard for all individuals, while at the identical time making an try to secure my sport to the excellent stage doable.Spade Suit