SeongSu Kong rising Korean star

SeungSu Kong started started poker late. A rising star early on during his youth back in 1995. He joined a public show of Korea's KBS, a comedy competition. It was a challenge that he took early on and


SeungSu Kong started started poker late. A rising star early on during his youth back in 1995. He joined a public show of Korea’s KBS, a comedy competition. It was a challenge that he took early on and was able to grab the grand champion title.

This comedian turn poker player is better known as Gong Ki Tak. He was seen in some of the Korean dramas like General Hospital 2 (2008), Our Happy Ending (2008) and Twinkle Twinkle (2011). The stage was set for him to perform his heart out. For 15 years he was an actor, he made people laugh and even made people cry when he ventured to drama and other movies. Up until now he is still active as an actor.

The Rise of a Star



Like all stars that rise too fast there are challenges he had to overcome. Living in the fast lane he got involve in sports betting, something that is frown upon by his government. He lost a lot in the game of chance and people started labelling him as a gambling addict. He knew he needed a change and he needed it.

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Came along an old friend, Kim Jiwoon is an active lecturer for the Holdem School in Korea.  He took the invitation to learn poker. At first he turn it down, he was avoiding all vices yet he gave a chance to check what it was. He started searching the internet what Holdem poker is all about. Directed to poker videos and soon he started watching. He watch videos of Final Tables where it boils down to 2 players. The two would shake their hands and cheers. He told himself, ” wait this is strange, in other table games nobody shake hands, nobody say congratulation to the other.”

SeungSu Kong soon realized that poker is like chess. He saw a player winning by bluffing an opponent. he saw players pulling in a player who are weak. It is a mind game where you must attract your opponent to come in. The competitive SeungSu Kong came out. As a soccer player knew the feeling of hunger to compete. The hunger to be better than your opponent. To out think and out play. As a mind game there would be less physical injury. Can he master this new mind game?

He went back to his friend as he crave the knowledge and skill to become better. Jiwoon brought him to Holdem School, started to play as his first tournament sparked his competitive blood

I want to know more. I want to be good at this. – SeungSu Kong

Weeks went by and his training went on. Holdem School believed it was time for him to test his skill with the other players and they pack up and came to manila.

The APT win 

Arriving in Manila with his team, he remembered what it felt back in his soccer game. The coach was giving his speech. Burning in anticipation with his team ready to compete. They went into the field early on with a specific goal in mind, to prove himself that he can do this, he is good. The first event was not in his favor, he started to rethink and analyze his game. He lost his first event. Ready to take chances he marched into another side event. Battling the APT POY 2016 lead Iori Yogo at the APT Queen Cards Ante Only Event. SeungSu Kong took home the 2nd place.


Asia Pacific Poker Tournament Manila and the Final Table


Amazed with the number playing in the field. SeungSu Kong was surprised that it was bigger as he heard rumours that there are champions from all over the world that came just to compete. It was an equal field. They all have the same starting stack. A newcomer he maybe in the game of poker, he felt this is where he belongs.

He took his seat and played for hours. Calmly and took his time like what his teachers told him. Studying his opponent as making sure he can grab the chips as he needed to keep building up. Attacking the right people at the right time. Avoiding any bad situation. Defending his chips when it was necessary.

APPT Day 2

Day 2 went on but the field was still big. Professional poker players are also qualified. There was eagerness to do battle with them. With too many players and being new to the international game, he barely knew the people who was in the table, all he could rely on was his skill and determination to maintain his chips. He did. Slowly defending and building his stack until it was the end of the day.


APPT Day 3: The battle with a Pro


Seongsu-Kong being interviewed by PokerCast Asia

Day 3 was memorable day for SeungSu Kong. The field got closer he get to know the people more. Finding information on the players on his table yet there was one player that really took his attention. A player that won multiple events in a lot of contries, from Australia to his homeland Korea. For SeungSu Kong, he was a true pro that he would wish to avoid but as luck would have it. They met in a weird circumstance.

A raise was issued by Alex Lee. Having a pocket pair he glance at his card and knew he had to defend it. He made a raise and a flat call was made by to him a pro.

The board went 998. Alex fired at once. He tank and look at his card. It started him to think. Making the initial raise, his card must be a pocket pair or maybe he is drawing. He needed to test it, he fired back.

A huge reply with a massive all-in-shove. Shocked but he had to compose himself. “Does Alex have a lower pair? is it drawing for a straight?” He had to think because this involve his tournament life. A bad call would bust him out. Should he call? Should he fold? Time was called, he had to think faster.

The floor started his clock and the time was ticking. “Think! think!”  “10…9…8…”, the floor announced. In anticipation  SeungSu Kong flip his chips motioning he called. He believes he is ahead but if he looses he was beaten by what he consider a super pro, it was all worth it.

He flip his card: shows pocket 10, Alex shows 8 6. Turn came out and river. Alas he won against Alex Lee. He could not contain himself as he shouts in excitement. Composed himself fast and run to Alex. He apologize sincerely and say his warmest thank you. Because for SeungSu Kong, he won the tournament already.




The Final Table

Ecstatic as he maybe he reached Top 9. SeungSu Kong is now in the final table of the Main Event of the Asia Pacific Poker Tour Season 10 Manila.

News spread to his friends and family. All cheering him, calling him and sending him messages of congratulations. Celebrities and normal people are alike. He felt he won his place in the world again. Finally he thought that he may get a bad shadow from his gambling past behind. Poker is not gambling. Poker is a game of skill. The game of mind.


He busted out at 8th place. Although it was a good shove. It didnt held him but he was happy. From his own word during his interview with PokerCast Asia:

“I may have lost at 8th place but I was able to shake the hands of pros. One was the 5 time Player of the Year and another was the current Player of the Year. Most of them where champions. In my heart I may not have won the tournament but have won myself back. I am coming back again and play in the felt. Now I have to go home and work but if time permits me I will play again” – SeongSu Kong

SeongSu Kong rising Korean star

More of SeongSu Kong at PokerCast Asia


SeungSu Kong started started poker late. A rising star early on during his youth back in 1995. He joined a public show of Korea's KBS, a comedy competition. It was a challenge that he took early on and was able to grab the grand champion title. This comedian turn poker player is better known


A successful tournament just ended with the 10th Season of Asia Pacific Poker Tour Manila at the City of Dreams Manila. 577 hopefuls had gathered to participate in the event and only one can be called a champion. Linh Tran from Vietnam is the APPT 10 Manila Champion. Winning a total

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