ANZPT Sydney: Adam storms through eve to take overall lead

Just two days ago, Jai Kemp celebrated victory in the $550 six-handed event as part of the preliminary schedule for the ANZPT Sydney. It's said that winning form is good form, and Kemp took that saying to heart on day 1B of the ANZPT Sydney Main Event.

Just five levels into the day, Kemp, who finished fifth to Grant Levy in the 2007 APPT Grand Final, had amassed a stack of more than 180,000. The day 1A chip leader Joseph Moussa finished with 152,000.


Jai Kemp rode the roller coaster on day 1B, but finished in good shape

For a time, Kemp threatened to tear the field apart as he climbed above 200,000, but he steadily leaked chip throughout the evening and finished the day firmly back in the pack but still well positioned heading into day two.

It was an intriguing day with Kemp more than 100,000 clear of the next player for much of the afternoon until several challengers emerged in the last two levels to close the gap.

Adam Cusenza takes the overall chip lead into day two on 177,200, ahead of Kemp (163,300), Joseph Moussa (151,900), Johnny Huynh (151,500) and Swedish PokerStars qualifier Ola Jernberg (147,200).


Adam Cusenza leads narrowly heading into day two

Other notables to reach day two from day 1B included Ben Delaney, Harris Pavlou, Chris Levick, Monica Nguyen and Peter Ling. And special mention to Michael Confos, who called it a night with 30 minutes remaining in the day, left his chips for the staff to bag and will return tomorrow with 54,200.

The day 1B field of 260 took the total field to 493 and created a prize pool of AUD $986,000 - the biggest for an event up to $3000 buy-in local poker history.

The 96 survivors from day 1B will join the 89 who remain from day 1A for tomorrow's penultimate day of action, with the field first chasing a spot in the top 45 where they'll be guaranteed a payout; then the race starts for the first prize of AUD $246,500.

That race will start with only two of the five members of Team Australia. Star City ambassador Grant Levy, Celina Lin and Emad Tahtouh all hit the rail, leaving Eric Assadourian and Tony Hachem to represent.

Hachem had been patient all day, and the payoff came in the final level when he flopped a set of jacks against his opponent's A-Q, sending him to a final tally of 101,100.

The 185 players still in contention will be back at 12.20pm AEST (3.20am GMT) tomorrow for day two of the ANZPT. Good evening from the team in Sydney, Australia.