Aussie Poker Pro Kahle Burns Keeps Winning

Australian poker fans know his name. Kahle Burns has been on the live poker tournament scene for more than a decade, but the poker pro has been playing cash games since he was old enough to do so in casinos. With both live and online poker experience, Burns has earned his place in today’s high-stakes poker games.

This has been a very good year for Burns in live tournaments, especially ones that have received a lot of global poker media attention.

As long as the wins keep coming, Burns will stay in the poker spotlight.

Always a Passion

Burns was first introduced to poker by a friend who played online and made a substantial hourly profit doing so. According to a CardPlayer interview, Burns was just out of high school and intrigued by becoming a poker pro.

He immediately saw the potential of a game in which skill was a key factor, so he began playing free-money online poker games and no-cost pub poker with friends. He took the skills he learned to the electronic poker tables at Crown Casino near his home in Melbourne, continued improving, and then took to the smaller No Limit Hold’em games in the poker room.

It was then that Burns quit his job at a bar (while studying civil engineering at university) and began earning a living in poker.

Over the years, Burns continued to study and slowly widen his range, increasing his stakes as he went along. Everything from poker forums online to hand histories, mostly from high-stakes games, helped him prepare to play bigger over time.

Results Show Upward Trajectory

Cash game poker results are not tracked in any official way, as it would be impossible. Online poker results can be monitored, but live tournament players show results on the Hendon Mob Database.

This is the best way to see how Burns moved up in stakes over the past decade.

Burns’ original tournaments in 2009, 2010, and 2011 were in Australia, close to home in Melbourne. The buy-ins ranged from $40 to $550. His first win was in a $550 buy-in No Limit Hold’em tournament, which he won for $35K.

He moved up in 2013, even playing the World Series of Poker Asia-Pacific Main Event in 2013 and finishing fifth for nearly $202K. He made another WSOP APAC final table the next year in the $5K buy-in Pot Limit Omaha event.

In the latter part of 2016, Burns went on a hot streak. He won the 2016 Sydney Championships Main Event in Sydney for more than $297K and the Western Classic Poker Championships in Perth for $73,500. He traveled to Macau for the Asia Pacific Poker Tour Main Event and won that for several hundred thousand dollars, too.

The winning continued in 2017 as he moved to playing high-roller tournaments. He won the Melbourne Poker Championships High Roller and then finished third in the Triton Poker Super High Roller Series in Macau for more than $1 million.

Burns final tabled the 2018 Aussie Millions Poker Championship and went to the World Series of Poker in Las Vegas, where he finished fifth in a $10K NLHE Heads-Up event and final tabled the Venetian DeepStack Championship. Both of those final tables combined for more than $150K in winnings.

Best Year Yet in 2019

In the tournament world, Burns entered 2019 without a lot of motivation. The aforementioned CardPlayer interview revealed, “I’m not super motivated to put heaps and heaps of time into play anymore,” he said in January 2019. “I’m sort of someone now who plays sporadically really hard.”

His intention was to play more cash games in Macau this year. He may have done that in the beginning of the year, but by May, everything had changed.

That was when Burns won the Crown Poker Championship NLHE High Roller tournament in Melbourne for $103K and headed out to the WSOP in Las Vegas. He had some deep runs there, most notably a second-place finish in the $10K NLHE 6-Handed Championship for nearly US$390K.

Burns then headed to the Triton Poker Super High Roller Series in London, where he final tabled two events. A subsequent trip to Barcelona for the European Poker Tour series saw him final table the Super High Roller and PLO events.

Win After Win

The Aussie traveled to Rozvadov, Czech Republic, in October. The WSOP Europe was in action there. He started with the WSOP Circuit events and finished 12th in the WSOPC Main Event. Then he finished ninth in the WSOP Europe 8-Game Mix.

When it came to the €25,500 buy-in NLHE Platinum High Roller event, Burns won it for his first-ever WSOP gold bracelet and nearly €597K. Days later, he also won the €2,500 NLHE Short Deck event for a second WSOP bracelet and more than €101K.

From there, it was back to Las Vegas for the high-stakes live series called Poker Masters. He took second in a PLO event for $109,200, then fourth in a $25K NLHE for $85K. and then he won the $25K NLHE for $416,500.

Currently, Burns is in the Bahamas in the Caribbean to play the PartyPoker MILLIONS series. In the last few days, he placed fourth in the High Roller event and third in a $50K NLHE event. Those two were worth nearly $500.

Motivation in the Cards

In 2019, Burns won more than $4.1 million thus far. Needless to say, however, the year is not over. There are numerous changes in the next six weeks to add more to his annual tally.

To date, Kahle Burns has won more than $7.6 million in live poker tournaments. This doesn’t include any cash game winnings or online poker winnings.

According to his latest interview with Poker Central, host of the Poker Masters, cash games have comprised the overwhelming majority of his play. “I primarily started as a cash game player and, up until the last two years, I’ve played 90% cash games.”

Burns is already ranked second on the Australia tournament all-time money list, behind the one-and-only Joe Hachem, former WSOP Main Event champion. Hachem has racked up more than $12.6 million to date. There is no telling how far Burns will go if he keeps playing at such a high level and staying on a streak.

Poker performance often relies a bit on something called “run good.” A person seems to get the right cards, make the right plays at the right time, and the cards fall their way, so to speak. Burns seems to be on this type of run-good heater at the moment, and there is no way to tell when it might end.

But Burns told Poker Central that it’s not about winning certain amount of money or tournaments. “I try not to get too attached to the results, as, obviously, there is a lot of variance in tournament poker,” he said. “So, if I feel like I’m playing good day in, day out, that’s sort of what I pride myself on as opposed to winning a bracelet or winning x-amount of dollars.”

The numbers may not be his goal, but many poker fans have been watching Kahle Burns’ numbers more closely as he continues to win.


Rose Varrelli avatar
Rose Varrelli
Senior Casino & News Writer

Hi there! I’m Rose, and with nine years behind me in the iGaming industry, I craft engaging narratives at CasinoAus. My education in Communication across Europe has sharpened my skills in fintech, casino legislation, and digital marketing. Backed by a strong foundation in SEO, storytelling, and cross-cultural communication, I’m passionate about creating content that resonates globally and educates our audience.

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