The countdown to the year’s biggest event has begun and over the next 25 days, Poker Central will introduce the entire 2017 Super High Roller Bowl field. From the world’s best high-stakes players, to online crushers and successful businessmen, poker’s most exclusive event has it all. Follow Poker Central’s “25 Days of SHRBowl” to know who will be competing when cards get in the air on May 28th.
The Super High Roller Bowl is a world-wide affair, with eight countries represented throughout the 56-player roster and while most of the field’s non-pros hail from North America, two European businessmen will also be competing in the year’s biggest event. Leon Tsoukernik is making his first Super High Roller Bowl appearance and Talal Shakerchi is back for a third time, with each taking very different paths to the 2017 Super High Roller Bowl.
Leon Tsoukernik loves poker and over the last few years, has been one of the most influential figures in growing the game throughout Europe. That growth began in 2003, when Tsoukernik opened King’s Casino Rozvadov on the German-border of the Czech Republic. A few years later, Tsoukernik and King’s shifted their focus to poker and King’s is now the biggest poker room in Europe.
The biggest poker room in Europe is also going to be home to the biggest poker festival ever held outside of Las Vegas later this year. King’s Casino Rozvadov will be home to the World Series of Poker Europe in October of 2017, a series that will boast over €20 million in guarantees and the first ever €111,111 One Drop High Roller held in Europe.
As CEO of King’s Casino, Tsoukernik was instrumental in bringing the WSOP back to Europe and if the European Poker Awards allowed double-dipping, we’d imagine he’d be the front-runner to win Industry Person of the Year in 2017. Alas, Tsoukernik already won that award in 2014, thanks to his work throughout the European poker industry, and at the end of last year, Tsoukernik picked up another European trophy.
In the final European Poker Tour Super High Roller, before PokerStars rebranded their championship series, Tsoukernik navigated a field of elite European professionals to win the €50,000 Super High Roller at EPT Prague. The $782,000 score is Tsoukernik’s best career result and while he has yet to make news on the felt since, Tsoukernik clearly eats, sleeps and breathes poker, so he will come into this year’s Super High Roller Bowl primed for more success.
Another player that is just as passionate about the game is Talal Shakerchi. The English hedge fund manager is another hybrid crusher, who does damage on both the live and virtual felt. While Shakerchi, picture above, has recorded some of his best career finishes in High Roller events, he has seen success at nearly every level of the poker hierarchy.
Dating back to 2009, Shakerchi has wins in European events with buy-ins ranging from €500 to €10,000. Two of those trips to the winner’s circle have come in €10,000 buy-in EPT High Roller events, with his best career-score coming from a 2013 EPT9 London High Roller victory for $656,000. Since, Shakerchi has moved over the $3 million career earnings mark, with most of his recent success coming in $50,000 and $100,000 Super High Roller events.
Shakerchi also has an impressive online tournament resume, with his best online result coming in last year’s PokerStars Spring Championship of Online Poker. Shakerchi, who plays under the handle “raidalot,” outlasted an over 800 player field to win the 2016 SCOOP $10,000 Main Event for $1,500,000. That wasn’t Shakerchi’s first SCOOP title either, as he three victories in online poker’s biggest series.
Later this month, both Leon Tsoukernik and Talal Shakerchi will try to build upon their on and off-felt success in the $300,000 buy-in Super High Roller Bowl, while also trying to keep the Super High Roller Bowl title in Europe, after Germany’s Rainer Kempe won last year.
Tomorrow, “25 Days of SHRBowl” moves away from the non-professionals to feature three American High Rollers looking to record career-defining wins this summer. Follow all of Poker Central’s coverage of the year’s biggest event here.