DPT Xpress March 2021 Highlights: Meet Biggest Winners From DPT Xpress 5th Edition!

The first domestic live poker series of the year ‘DPT Xpress’ is now in the rearview. Hosted between 11th -14th March 2021 at the luxurious Deltin Royale casino in Goa, ‘India`s most buzzing poker tournament’  brought live tournament poker back to Goa after almost a year-long hiatus and the decision paid off handsomely for the organizers. With record-breaking turnouts across all four events, the series proved to be a huge success and set a new turnout benchmark in all events.

Hosted for the second time at the Deltin Royale casino, the 5th edition of the popular live series more than doubled up the previous best numbers recorded at the past editions. While every event saw a record turnout, the most successful event of the series was its Main Event that ran between 13th to 14th March 2021 and saw a mind-blowing turnout with a record 421 entries. Overall, the festival attracted hundreds of players, including professional players, plenty of new faces, upcoming players, and recreational ones. Over 1164 entries were recorded and more than INR 1 Crore was distributed in prize money to the ones who made it deep enough into the festival’s events.

While we saw several players win big, the biggest winner of them all was none other than the funny man Ramesh Rao Thotapalli who currently resides in Goa. He outlasted a record-breaking field of 421 entries in the Main Event to win INR 12.04 Lac. Let us have a look at the winners from the series!

5K Burn N Turn – Shrey Baj (INR 3.35 Lac)

The four-event series got off to a fantastic start with the series opener 5K Burn N Turn registering a record 333 entries, a massive improvement over the previous edition’s 197 entries. After several hours of intense battles, Jaipur-based Shrey Baj emerged as the first champion of the series.

Baj entered the FT with the second largest stack, behind the eventual runner-up, Nikunj Doshi. However, he did amazingly well and gained control after busting two players in Sachin Kinger and KN Suresh before the heads-up. While Doshi was able to steal away the lead from Baj early on, it was eventually Baj who emerged victorious to win his career-first live title and the top prize INR 3.35 Lac.

The top 36 places were paid out of the INR 15.82 Lac prize pool, with a min-cash being INR 10,300.

Final Table Payouts (INR)

  1. Shrey Baj – 3,35,000
  2. Nikunj Doshi – 2,50,000
  3. Sachin Kinger – 1,55,000
  4. KN Suresh – 1,02,000
  5. Gaurav Jain – 65,000
  6. Siddharth Ranshevre – 65,000
  7. Abhishek – 54,530
  8. Ritesh Khatwani – 44,770
  9. Firoz Khan – 35,180

10K Bounty Winner – Sandeep Ramesh (INR 2.75 Lac)

The second event of the series, the 10K Bounty running on 12th March, was also a fast-paced one. Like the series opener, it too wrapped up with a grand success drawing in 239 entries, a huge improvement over last edition’s 128 entries.  The bounty event saw the field quickly whittling down to the heads-up between Sandeep Ramesh and Ashit Sharma. The latter started the FT with the chip lead and was favourite to win the title as he was more experienced of the two. However, it was the relatively lesser-known Ramesh who stole the show and won the title for INR 2.75 Lac.

The top 24 places got paid out of the INR 11.18 Lac prize pool with a min-cash worth INR 10,830.

Final Table Payouts (INR)

  1. Sandeep Ramesh – 2,75,000
  2. Ashit Sharma – 1,90,000
  3. Archit Garg – 1,20,000
  4. Abhishek Sharma – 74,000
  5. Avinash Rajpal – 56,760
  6. Nitin Hira – 45,000
  7. Aayush Agarwal – 40, 000
  8. Amit Tejura – 33,100
  9. Ritesh Khatwani – 27,500

15K Main Event Winner – Ramesh Rao Thotapalli (INR 12.04 Lac)

The biggest highlight of the 4-day long series was the 15K Main Event (13th to 14th March). It ran two starting flights on 13th March and registered a record field of 421 entries, more than doubling the 205-entry benchmark set at the DPTX Main Event in June 2019. A total of 108 players returned for Day 2 on 14th March, and it was the funny man Ramesh Rao Thotapalli who made his way to the top after beating them all to win his first-ever DPT Xpress title and the lion’s share of the INR 58.05 Lac prize pool worth INR 12.04 Lac –  the single largest payout ever awarded at a DPT X series!

The 30-year old Thotapalli who now lives in Goa entered the FT third in chips but dominated it all the way, winning key pots and busting fellow competitors to build his stack and pull ahead of the other players left. He eliminated six of his eight FT opponents, including Sameer Agarwal (runner-up for INR 8.07 Lac) in the heads-up battle to finally claim his first live title and the beautiful DPTX trophy.

The top 53 players were paid, with 3 of them being former DPT Xpress champions. The March 2019 DPT Xpress Main Event champion Ankit Jajodia (18th for INR 68,210) was the first of them to fall. The June 2019 DPT Xpress Main Event champion Anant Purohit (7th for INR 1,91,000) and the defending DPT Xpress Main Event champion Deepak Raina (8th for INR 1,54,540) made it to the final table.

Final Table Payouts (INR)

  1. Ramesh Rao Thotapalli – 12,04,000
  2. Sameer Agarwal – 8,07,240
  3. Dhaval Mudgal – 5,32,660
  4. Shivam Shukla – 3,57,040
  5. Mohak Kapoor – 2,74,600
  6. Nikunj Doshi – 2,27,580
  7. Anant Purohit – 1,91,000
  8. Deepak Raina – 1,54,540
  9. Avinash Sharma – 1,18,260

10K Deepstack Turbo Winner – Gautham Raju (INR 4.30 Lac)

The final tourney on the DPT Xpress roster, the 10K Deepstack Turbo, was played out on 14th March. The tourney this time featured the re-entry option. Like all other events on the schedule, the final event too fared really well to record 171 entries (60 re-entries) and created a prize pool of INR 16.67 Lac that was eventually distributed among the top 21 places with a min-cash worth INR 21K.

Gautham Raju was the last player standing and won the DPT Xpress trophy along with INR 4.30 Lac in prize money. Akash Singhal finished runner-up and walked away with INR 2.90 Lac for his efforts.

Raju was fifth in the stack at the start of the FT, with Akshit Gupta starting it as the chip leader. However, Gupta ran out of chips and eventually exited in third place, earning INR 1.70 Lac.

Final Table Payouts (INR)

  1. Gautham Raju – 4,30,000
  2. Akash Singhal – 2,90,000
  3. Akshit Gupta – 1,70,000
  4. Tanay Hargunaney – 1,05,000
  5. Puneet Tandon – 80,000
  6. Amarnath R – 65,600
  7. Pawan Jaiswal – 59,641
  8. Vishal Singh – 50,000
  9. Milena Mezhuieva – 44,000

Ladies Who Cashed At DPT Xpress March 2021

Like every edition of the DPT Xpress, the recent edition of the DPT  Xpress saw several female poker players battling it out at the live felts, including Ankita Ajay Malik, Simran Malhotra, poker mom Radhika Shankar and Ukraine’s Milena Mezhuieva who now lives in Goa. While Malhotra could not run deep enough to finish ITM, the rest of the three ladies cashed at the series. Mezhuieva was the star performer among the ladies. She not only final-tabled (9th for INR 44,000) the 10K Deepstack Turbo but also made it to the ITM list in the Main Event finishing 48th for INR 25,310. Radhika Shankar and Ankita Ajay cashed out in the series opener – 5K Burn N Turn. Shankar finished 25th for INR 12,300, while Malik finished 30th for INR 10,300.  Well-done ladies and more power to you for the next DPT!