After spending the best part of a year in poker exile, young Adelaide based online poker sensation “Andy McLeod” has reappeared in stunning fashion after recently celebrating his 18th birthday.
In his first major event since resuming his online career after a hiatus from the game, McLeod showed that time has not eroded any of the skill that has earned him nearly $600,000 in tournament earnings to date, as he surged through the field in this week’s PokerStars Sunday Million. The young pro rode a mixed wave of both support and astonishment from the rail, as he looked to become the third Australian to capture a Sunday Million title this year. Unfortunately he had to settle for fourth place and a $75,870 pay-day after he ran A-Q into an opponent’s pocket aces pre-flop and couldn’t get any help.
Many players and poker enthusiasts alike have questioned the ultra-loose aggressive style played by McLeod, and that style was again on show during the Sunday Million, taking numerous big hits to his stack, only to recover through relentless stealing.
The Lazarus-like comeback by McLeod has set tongues wagging in the Australian poker community as they question where, when, and if he will choose to make a debut into the world of live tournaments. To date no plans have been publicised by McLeod relating to playing live, but with the Victorian Poker Championships getting under-way this week at Crown in Melbourne, many will be on the look-out for the mysterious online pro should he be looking to slip under the radar.
One place where McLeod will need no re-introduction is the PocketFives Australian leaderboard. McLeod finished 2007 ranked number seven in the Cardplayer online world rankings, and was also the top ranked Australian online player. He is sure to give current top ranked Australian player Jay “Seabeast” Kinkade, a fresh challenge for the title.
It remains to be seen whether Andy McLeod will throw himself back into playing a large volume of online tournaments to re-establish himself in the world online rankings or whether he will look to forge beginnings in the live poker scene like fellow young South Australian player Jonathan “xMONSTERxDONGx” Karamalikis. Karamalikis recently picked up Pokernetwork Young Gun of the Month award, thanks to both his online and recent live success.
One thing is for sure, whichever path “Andy McLeod” ultimately chooses, many Australian Poker fans are very pleased to see one of the great young Australian players return to the virtual felt.
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Online phenom Andy McLeod takes 4th place in PokerStars Sunday Million
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