ANZPT Perth: Roman rules, but here comes Hachem

The money is close enough to smell with just 30 players aiming for the top 24 and a slice of the AUD $510,600 prize pool after day two of the ANZPT Perth Main Event. Against the African beat of a massive party poolside at Burswood tonight, the day's play ended in dramatic fashion with more than 75 per cent of the 112 starters sent to the rail.

Local player Nik Lackovic started the day as chip leader, his brother Aleks overtook him and held top spot for much of the day before another Perth player, Roman Konopacki stormed to the head of the chip count late in the day. Konopacki finished on 565,700 ahead of highly rated Aussie online player Chris minesony Evans (228,000) and Anthony Marenko (208,900).


ANZPT Perth day 2 chip leader Roman Konopacki

The other big story of the day was the rags to riches run of Tony Hachem. The Team Australia Pro was down to 23,000 in the penultimate level of the day, clawed back to 65,000 by the start of the final hour and finished on 199,700 and in fourth chip position overall.

Hachem remains on track for an amazing sixth cash in seven ANZPT events. He is also well positioned to steal a lead on the field in the 2010 ANZPT Player of the Year race, although Chris Evans and Andy Kemmler (who also cashed in Adelaide) are also in contention for a big points haul.


ANZPT Player of the Year Tony Hachem is in line for successive final tables

Another highlight of the day was a massive hand that featured APPT Sydney Champion and PokerStars Qualifier Aaron Benton. On the button Benton faced a standard pre flop raise from local Robert Burns, which he called. On a flop of 9-9-A, Aaron called the half pot bet of 6000 by Burns. Benton again called Burns' standard bet on the turn and his all-in shove on the river to pick up a 120k pot. The hand is pictured below!


Other notables who'll be back for the race to the final table tomorrow include Aleks Lackovic (166,900), Ben Savage (157,600), Aaron Benton (127,900) and Sean Dunwoodie (77,400).

Today's casualties included Team Australia Pros Eric Assadourian and Grant Levy, 2010 Aussie Millions champ Tyron Krost, ANZPT Adelaide winner Rennie Carnevale, Australian Poker Hall of Fame Legend Jeff Lisandro, Leo Boxell, Kristian Lunardi and David Steicke and Joel Dodds.

Play is scheduled for a 12.30pm start tomorrow, and we'll be here until the first ANZPT Perth Main Event final table is decided. In the meantime, we have a party to crash.