ANZPT Adelaide: Let the chips fly

In nearly all poker tournaments the players gather just outside the tournament area swapping stories exclusively about poker and mostly about bad beats before the event is due to start. It's no different on the first floor of the SKYCITY Adelaide casino this morning. Old stagers mix with "young guns", some father-son combinations. Successful internet even "younger guns" round out the field of about 104 on this Day 1 Flight 1 of the $3,000 main event.


Tournament dealer Sandy prepares to distribute the starting chip stacks

There is the inevitable short delay before Danny McDonaugh, the Tournament Director for this event, opens with thank yous all round. He hands the microphone to Team PokerStars Pro Joe Hachem, surely the man who has delivered the most "shuffle up and deal" speeches in Australia to date. Joe takes his seat with the other hopefuls today.

Once things were under way the usual hush came over the room as the game and the concentration begun.

Action came quickly, with the first set of blinds being 50-100 and 20,000 in chips. On hand two David Hovey, under the gun on table eight, finds himself all-in against Steve Tapakas in the big blind. David shows kings but even before he turns them over he seemed to know Steve had aces. A J-10-9 flop provides a few more outs, but David headed out of the area when they failed to arrive. One less contender. Another notable performer to bust was the very-well-credentialed Antonio Casale.

It's a gentle structure for this event and half way through level two we have only lost five players.


Melbourne player Steve Topakas takes the chip lead doubling up to 40K after hand two