ANZPT Melbourne: Levels 17 & 18 (blinds 4000-8000, ante 500)

9:30pm: Ten-minute break

9:15pm: Fava races out the door

Lose too many races and tournament poker becomes very tough. Just ask Andrew "Dash" Fava who just lost consecutive races to be bundled out of the tournament.

He tried both sides of the coin too. First he went with the pair holding 9♣9♦ against the A♠K♠ of Andrew Cockle but a king on the flop gave Cockle the double up.

A few hands later and Fava tried the overcards with his A♣Q♠ up against the T♥T♠ of Logan English-Smith. However this time the board bricked out 3♠2♦9♠8♣K♣ to see Fava sent to the exit in 25th place. English-Smith is up to 325,000.

9:00pm: Obst still the king

Nick Dallimore was all in preflop with his T♥T♠ but he ran into the K♥K♣ of James Obst. The board ran out A♦J♦3♦2♦4♣ and without a diamond between them, Obst's kings remained in front to eliminate Dallimore in 26th place. He'll take home $5,815 for his tournament.

Meanwhile Obst is up to 385,000.

8:55pm: Putt and Pedley chop prize money

In simultaneous eliminations, Michael Pedley and Graeme Putt have been eliminated at the same time and will chop up the prize money on the pay jump from 27th to 28th place.

Putt was all in with A♦T♦ against the T♣T♥ of Brad Bower and bricked out on the Q♠6♠5♦J♣6♥ board.

At the same time Pedley had predicted his bustout before it even happened, as he ran his J♥J♠ into the A♥A♦ of Ben Savage. The board fell 2♠2♣2♥Q♥6♠ to send Pedley to the rail as Savage moved up to 290,000.

Both Pedley and Putt received $5,427.50 for their efforts in Melbourne.

8:40pm: Kerr hits the rail

Stuart Kerr was first crippled in a race against Amanda De Cesare before James Obst finished the job to eliminate Kerr in 29th place.

It was Kerr's 7♠7♣ against De Cesare's A♥K♥ with an ace spiking on the river for the "Poker Star".

Kerr's last 30,000 then went into the middle with Q♣8♣ but James Obst called in the blinds with J♠4♥ and connected with the board of J♥A♦9♥K♦9♣.

8:35pm: Jumping jacks for Jie

Jie Gao opened to 21,000 from middle position and action folded around to Carl Booth in the big blind who moved all in for around 90,000. Before the dealer could count down the chips, Gao declared a call.

Gao: J♥J♠
Booth: A♦J♣

Gao clapped his hands in delight at seeing the good spot he was in and in only got better from there as the board ran out J♦7♠8♣4♥K♠. Booth exits in 30th place as Gao is making a great run at back-to-back ANZPT Melbourne final tables as he moves up to 330,000.


Jie Gao is heading towards back-to-back ANZPT Melbourne final tables

8:30pm: Level up, blinds 4000-8000, ante 500

8:29pm: Kicker woe for Christieson

Daniel Christieson and Alex Palantinis collided on a flop of Q♠8♣4♣ with Christieson's last chips in the middle. Unfortunately for him, his Q♦J♦ top pair was out-kicked by the Q♥K♦ of Palantinis.

The 4♣ fell on the turn and the K♠ hit the river to eliminate Christieson in 31st place.

8:24pm: Huntly becomes the hunted

"Give me two bullets Billy," said Dennis Huntly to the dealer as the cards were being flung around the table, "Let's get this over with!"

Huntly squeezed his cards from under the gun and moved his last 32,500 into the middle. The table folded around to Brad Bower in the big blind who made the call.

Bower: K♣J♦
Huntly: A♥T♠

The board fell K♥9♠T♦4♦9♥ to pair Bower's king and leave Huntly heading home with $5,040 in his pocket for his 32nd place finish.

8:12pm: One-Two punch KO's Davidson

It's slow going here at the moment as the short stacks are holding on for dear life as they've just made another pay jump following the elimination of Stewart Davidson in 33rd place.

It was back-to-back hands that led to his demise against Ted Nguyen. The first was a battle of the blinds on a flop of A♣Q♦8♣. Davidson held A♥7♦ but Nguyen had flopped two pair with his Q♠8♦. The turn was the 6♦ and river the 8♠ to see Nguyen double up.

Davidson was left with just 40,000 and he moved them all in from the button next hand with A♣3♥ with Nguyen calling in the small blind holding J♥T♥. The flop landed Q♠T♦5♥ to put Nguyen in front with a pair of tens but Davidson caught good on the A♥ turn. However it all changed again on the river as the T♠ landed to give the pot to Nguyen and send Davidson to the cashier as 32 players remain.

7:55pm: Karib heads to the cashier

Karib Karib's valiant battle with his short stack has come to an end when he pushed his last chips in with pocket jacks but Raj Ramakrishnan woke up with pocket queens. The board bricked out and Karib was eliminated in 34th place.

7:42pm: Krost crippled as Allis hits two-outer for chip lead

2010 Aussie Millions champ Tyron Krost has been crippled in unfortunate fashion in a preflop clash with Kiwi Joe Allis. Krost opened for a raise before Allis put in a three-bet. Krost four-bet and Allis five-bet shoved with Krost making the call.

Krost: J♦J♥
Allis: 9♠9♥

With over 600,000 in the middle the dealer spread the 5♣K♣9♦Q♥6♠ board to the disbelief of Krost who was left with just 15,000 in chips as Allis becomes our new chip leader!


Our new chip leader is New Zealand's Joe Allis

A few moments later Krost was able to find a triple up with his 5♣5♦ surviving against the 4♣4♦ of Stewart Davidson when the board ran out J♠6♥7♦5♥K♦.

He then doubled up again when his K♦J♥ made two pair against the pocket queens of Ryan McKay on a board of 5♦2♣J♦K♠3♦. Incredibly Krost has some breathing room again with 120,000 chips.

7:35pm: Delight for Dallimore

It didn't take long to have our first all in post-dinner as the short-stacked Nick Dallimore doubled up through Brad Bower. Action folded to Dallimore on the button who open-jammed for about 70,000 from the button with K♥8♣ with Bower making the call in the small blind with A♠J♥.

The board ran out K♦9♣2♠6♠4♦ to pair Dallimore and double him up to 150,000. Bower is back to around 215,000.

7:30pm: Play resumes

The players are back from their dinner break and ready to surge towards that elusive ANZPT final table. The cards are in the air!