Zhao Jian of China Crowned World Series Mahjong Champion 2015 in Macau

Hong Kong, 8th December 2015 – After two days of intense competition, Zhao Jian of China has been crowned the fourth World Series of Mahjong (WSOM) Champion at The Venetian® Macao. He received the grand prize of HKD$406,161 and the 999 pure gold mahjong necklace from Mr John Hardyment, CEO of World Mahjong Limited. WSOM 2015 saw hundreds of contestants from around the world compete in what continues to be the world’s largest mahjong tournament in terms of player participation and prize money.

Title Name Prize
Champion Zhao Jian
(China)
Cash prize of HKD$406,161 and a 999 pure gold mahjong necklace
Second Place Suzuki Taro (Japan) Cash prize of HKD$293,263
Third Place Lai Siu Kui (Hong Kong) Cash prize of HKD$239,186
Fourth Place Peng Cheng Lung (Taiwan) Cash prize of HKD$210,790

 

The two day, single elimination format tournament saw the return of Taiwanese celebrities Hsu Nai-Lin, Sabrina Yu and Doris Kuang, who were greeted by many fans. Also, competing were former champions, including WSOM 2007 champion Mr. Hui Chung Lai, WSOM 2008 champion Mr. Ho Kwok Hung and WSOM 2010 champion Mr. Chan Tak Kwan. Mr. Hui Chung Lai made the top 8 this year and said that the new electronic mahjong tables had increased the pace of the competition.

To date, all the past champions of WSOM have been from Hong Kong and Mr. Zhao Jian is now the first champion from China, “I started playing mahjong when I was five. I was not doing well in the first four sessions, so I’m thrilled to have won. I think it was a combination of strategy and luck for me today.”

A highlight of the final game was the broad representation of the four players. This is the first time that the top four of WSOM have represented China, Hong Kong, Japan and Taiwan. Zhao Jian, the champion, is a 36 year-old lawyer from China, who sees mahjong as a puzzle game.  Mr. Suzuki Taro is 43 years old and a professional mahjong star in Ibaraki, Japan. He led throughout the top 16 and top 8 games but lost in the final game. Third place, Mr. Lai Siu Kui, won his entry into the Championship event by coming fourth place in the Hong Kong Qualifying Tournament. Fourth place, Mr. Peng Cheng Lung, is a software engineer from Taiwan and also the winner of the Taiwan Online Qualifying Tournament.

The WSOM featured the best mahjong players from around the world, all competing for cash prizes in an exhilarating tournament held in Asia’s entertainment capital. The prize structure distributes the prize money according to players’ scores, thereby increasing the entertainment and excitement level throughout the tournament. It also spreads the prize money more evenly among a larger number of winners.

“The World Series of Mahjong Championship 2015 marked an important step in our bid to organize the highest-quality mahjong tournament in the world,” said Mr. Jim Mehren, President of World Mahjong Limited. “As with the three World Series events, World Series of Mahjong 2015 saw extraordinary mahjong players emerge, with amazing levels of skill and a keen sense of competition. Importantly, the World Series of Mahjong rules create a level playing field for all mahjong players, regardless of origin, and are optimized for tournament play, bold strategies and fast-paced action.”

For the first time, WSOM has produced two episodes of a one-hour TV program, which will be broadcast worldwide including through the large online video platform LeTV. It is also the first time that WSOM has partnered with Tencent, which sponsored the China online tournament and formed a team to join the event. Two of these players made it to the top 8 players.

The World Series of Mahjong Rules© is the world’s leading standardized version of mahjong rules validated with an international track record of previous tournament use. Given the diversity of mahjong rules played in Asia and other parts of the world, the World Series of Mahjong employs a simplified rule and scoring system that is fair to all, simply and easy to learn, systematic and consistent, and emphasizes the playability of the game as a competition of skill. The new format gives the players more playing time (guaranteed 16 cycles or 64 hands) before they are eliminated. This also mitigates the luck factor and brings skill to the forefront of the game.

For more information on the World Series of Mahjong 2015, please visit: http://worldmahjong.com//world-series-2015/.

Photo Caption:

Photo 1: (From left to right) Mr. Suzuki Taro the second place of WSOM 2015, Mr. Zhao Jian the champion of WSOM 2015, Mr. John Hardyment CEO of World Mahjong Limited, Mr. Lai Siu Kui the third place of WSOM 2015 and Mr. Peng Cheng Lung the fourth place of WSOM 2015.

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Photo 2: WSOM 2015 saw hundreds of contestants from around the world compete in what continues to be the world’s largest mahjong tournament in terms of player participation and prize money.

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Photo 3: Mr. Jim Mehren, President of World Mahjong Limited wish to further expand the promotion of the mahjong sports to every corner of the world.

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Photo 4: The champion of WSOM 2015, Mr. Zhao Jian, also received the 999 pure gold mahjong necklace.

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