(Macau, August 22, 2010) An exciting Final Round of the Third-annual World Series of Mahjong was held today at The Venetian® Macao-Resort-Hotel. 16 mahjong players battled against each other and after 9 hours of 3 elimination rounds, the World Champion was crowned. Chan Tak-Kwan, a furniture salesperson from Hong Kong, outlasted the other 200 participants from more than 10 countries to win the title of “World Champion”. Pao Jin-Long, another player from Hong Kong, settled for the second place while Yang Xun-Zhi from Taiwan and Li Jin-Dai from mainland China won the third and fourth places in the tournament respectively. It is the first time for the World Series of Mahjong to have players from Greater China playing together at the Final Table.
Chan Tak-Kwan, a 34-year-old furniture salesperson from Hong Kong, becomes the third World Champion from Hong Kong. He has been playing mahjong for over ten years. He was encouraged by his friends to participate in the qualifier organized by Blue Girl Beer in Hong Kong. Then he was sponsored by Blue Girl Beer to participate in the World Series Championship tournament in Macau, and fought his way bravely to the Final Table today. He did not perform very well for the first two days of the World Series, and he was originally in the fourth place at the Final Table. However, just like what happened to the 2008 World Champion, Chan fought over the other three players with confidence in the last few hands and changed his fate near the end. “The first thing I want to do now is to thank my friends who have encouraged me to participate in the Blue Girl Beer qualifier in the beginning. Chan took home a cash prize of HK$180,530, a World Champion necklace, a unique Venetian mask sponsored by The Venetian® Macao-Resort-Hotel, and a free seat in the 2011World Series of Mahjong.
Pao Jin-Long, the 31-year-old first runner-up from Hong Kong, has been playing mahjong for 18 years since he came to live in Hong Kong from America. “My parents taught me how to play mahjong. I think mahjong is very challenging, so it is a very suitable sport for a smart person,” said the confident Pao. He was awarded with HK$155,078 prize money.
Yang Xun-Zhi, the 51-year-old player from Taipei, has been playing mahjong for 35 years. He was sponsored by i8 Mahjong, the official on-line partner for the World Series, to participate in the tournament and settled for the third place eventually. He had also participated in the Second World Series but did not make it to the top 128 players on the second day of the tournament. “So I went home, studied the game rules and practiced hard. Today I can enjoy the fruit of my hard work!”, said Yang proudly. He took home a prize money of HK$124,297.
Li Jin-Dai, the 39-year-old beauty practitioner from mainland China, was also sponsored by i8 Mahjong, the official on-line partner for the World Series, to participate in the tournament. However, she was disappointed about finishing in the fourth place. “Mahjong is my only interest and I have been playing for over 20 years. I often participate in the national mahjong tournaments in mainland China. Today, I had a leading position at the Final Table, but lost a lot of points to the Champion in the last few hands. Still, I believe I am a professional mahjong player!” said Li, who received a cash prize of HK$112,839.
The World Series of Mahjong was a three-day championship tournament launched in 2006 by World Mahjong Limited, a group of international media veterans and entertainment industry professionals. The World Series of Mahjong gathers top mahjong players from all over the world to vie for the enviable title of “World Mahjong Champion”.