The countdown to the year’s biggest event has begun and over the next 25 days, Poker Central will introduce the entire 2017 Super High Roller Bowl field. From the world’s best high-stakes players, to online crushers and successful businessmen, poker’s most exclusive event has it all. Follow Poker Central’s “25 Days of SHRBowl” to know who will be competing when cards get in the air on May 28th.

What if I told you, two players who account for over $30 million in combined earnings, countless High Roller titles and are standard answers to the question, “Who is the world’s best poker player?” have only gotten better with time? That Tom Marchese and Dan Smith are coming off banner years and are poised to pick up where they left off last summer…

For a player that has had seven-figure earnings in five of the last seven years, it is hard to say that 2016 was a banner year for Tom Marchese. It may have been par for the course in terms of his nearly $4 million earnings total but in terms of results, Marchese has never had more success.

The year opened with a $25,000 ARIA High Roller win in January and over the next 12 months, Marchese picked up three more ARIA wins and seven other podium finishes. In total, Marchese earned over $2 million in ARIA High Roller events but that is a just a small portion of his nearly $16 million in career earnings, which has him inside the All-Time Money List’s top-twenty.

2016 was also no outlier for Marchese, as he has been regularly recording six-figure scores since the start of the decade. His first breakout result and win came in the 2010 North American Poker Tour Main Event held at Venetian. Marchese won $827,000 and a few months later, he made his first appearance in the High Roller arena.

Marchese final tabled the €25,000 High Roller at the EPT 6 Grand Final but it would take two years until he really announced himself. That declaration came in 2012, when Marchese won the $100,000 Super High Roller at the WPT World Championship, good for a $1,300,000 score. That is one of six seven-figure scores on Marchese’s resume, one of which is a $1,075,000 result for a 6th place finish in the 2015 Super High Roller Bowl.

The rest of Marchese’s career-best results have come in $100,000 buy-in events, which is where Dan Smith, pictured above, also does most of his heavy lifting. Smith bubbled last year’s Super High Roller Bowl but still put together a tremendous summer, with his biggest score coming in the $111,111 High Roller for One Drop at the World Series of Poker.

Smith was the runner-up to Fedor Holz but still notched a $3,078,000 score, which is just one of five seven-figure marks on his resume. His first came in 2012, when Smith won the Aussie Millions $100,000 Challenge for $1,041,000 and he picked up another later that year, in a €50,000 Super High Roller at EPT 9 Barcelona.

Another $1,000,000 result came in 2013, when Smith took down the WPT Doyle Brunson Five Diamond World Poker Classic and over the last calendar year, Smith has seen continued success in Las Vegas. On top of that WSOP One Drop run, Smith has four ARIA High Roller wins since last summer, with his most recent coming this past February.

Those results have pushed Smith over $16 million in career earnings and if the last few summers are any indication; Smith could be quickly move himself near $20 million. Dating back to 2014, Smith has five World Series of Poker final tables, as well as a 20th place finish in the 2014 WSOP Main Event. Marchese also has a deep Main Event run on his resume, as he finished 14th in last year’s Main Event.

Those runs prove that Marchese and Smith can navigate massive fields but it is in massive buy-in events that seems to bring out their best. Both Marchese and Smith will be returning to the Super High Roller Bowl for a third time later this month and will be looking to add another banner to their collection. 

Tomorrow, “25 Days of SHRBowl” continues with the reigning GPI Player of the Year and the player that has taken a firm grip on this year’s leader board. Follow Poker Central’s coverage of the year’s biggest event here