ANZPT Queenstown: Day 4, levels 15&16 (blinds 2000-4000, ante 400)
2:06pm: Macbeth out (damned spot)
Although he managed to triple up to about 10 big blinds, Tim Macbeth ultimately couldn't out-run the reaper. He was all in again, with the best of it again. His K♥[10s] was looking good to double through Julian Cohen's K♣4♣, but it just wasn't Macbeth's day. Cohen was all over a flop of 7♣9♣4♠, making a pair and a flush draw. Macbeth couldn't pull of the suckout as the turn came Q♦ and river fell A♠. Macbeth exits in 10th place.
The tournament is now on a short break to prepare for the final table.
1:58pm: Tim Macbeth crippled
"Not jack-five. Please not jack-five," Tim Macbeth begged the dealer. He had opened with a standard raise from the button, then called John Maklouf's all-in re-raise from the big blind for roughly 70,000. Macbeth had A♥Q♠ and was up against Macbeth's J♥5♥. Macbeth's worst fairs were realized as the flop came jack-high, 2♣J♦6♣. Macbeth picked up outs with the [10s], but the river blanked out 4♦.
1:49pm: Campbell Melville eliminated in 11th place
Campbell Melville sucked out on Julian Cohen one time. He couldn't do it a second. Melville wound up all in before the flop with A♠2♦ and this time Cohen was there to greet him with the pre-flop nuts, A♦A♣. The board was an uneventful 9♥3♦[10s]6♣J♥ to send Melville to the rail in 11th place.
We're down to two five-handed tables. Because the pay jump to 9th place is relatively small, the tables are not playing hand-for-hand. The final table will be played 9-handed.
1:46pm: The charmed life of Jason Gray
Jason Gray opened all in from the button with A♣6♠. Bryan Huang was there to meet him with J♣J♦. Once again Gray was all in and behind, but this time he eked out a win, A♦Q♥Q♦K♥9♠. Gray's aces and queens doubled him up to about 105,000 and put a signficant dent in Huang's stack.
1:39pm: Cohen's kings cracked
Campbell Melville open-shoved his button and knew he was in trouble when Julian Cohen snap-called from the small blind. Melville grimaced to see Cohen turn up K♣K♠. Melville could only muster J♥[10c].
"Good luck," Cohen told Melville. Melville took that to heart, flopping trip jacks J♦5♠J♠. Cohen couldn't find a third king as the board ran out Q♦ and 5♦.
"F*** my life," said Cohen. The silver lining for Melville was that Cohen had only 37,900 in chips.
1:28pm: Jason Gray NOT eliminated
Vesko Zmukic, active with his big stack, opened the button with a standard raise. Jason Gray then moved in from the small blind for about 70,000 and Zmukic had a decision. He opted to call with A♣[10h], in great shape against Gray's A♥3♠. The board rolled out 4♣J♣K♥8♦8♥, no help to either player. Jason stood up and shook Zmukic's hand, preparing to leave, until TD Toni Queadley and ANZPT Commissioner Danny McDonagh pointed out the two players were chopping. Each played four board cards, 8-8-K-J, with an ace.
"You're welcome to go, Jason," called Andrew Watson from the neighboring table.
1:24pm: Jie Gao eliminated in 12th place
Short-stacked Gao was going to need a lot of help to re-build after his devestating loss to Tim Clarke. Gao moved in for the second time and was called by Vesko Zmukic. Gao had the best hand with K♦J♥, but Zmukic's paired one of his "two live cards", 9♥6♦, on a flop of 3♦Q♣6♥. Gao didn't pair on the turn A♣ or river 7♣ and is now out.
1:16pm: Clarke cracks aces
For the fourth or fifth time in the last twenty minutes, Tim Clarke opened all in, this time for about 80,000 Jie Gao quickly called with A♥A♦, bad news for Clarke's K♥K♠. The flop changed nothing, 3♦5♦3♣, but Clarke spiked a lucky K♦ on the turn to take the lead. He kept it with the 2♣ river to double up to about 155,000.
The next hand Gao moved in with J♦8♦. Clarke tried to finish him off with A♦7♦ but it was Gao's turn to spike a card on fourth street. He paired jacks and remains alive.
1:14pm: Level 16 begins (blinds 2500-5000, ante 500)
1:11pm: Zmukic's stack gets bigger
Vesko Zmukic started Day 4 with about 480,000 in chips. He's up to about 540,000 after winning a small pot against Jason Gray. Zmukic limped his button, with Gray calling in the small blind and Bryan Huang checking the big blind. On a flop of K♦Q♦3♥, Gray had first action and bet 8,000. Only Zmukic called. Gray tried another 16,000 on the 3♠ turn and again Zmukic called. Both players checked the 9♠ river. Gray showed down a pair of queens, Q♥6♥, but conceded the pot to Zmukic's pair of kings, K♠7♥.
1:00pm: Keeping it friendly
Michael Spilkin has been rock-steady throughout the four days of this event. He opened a pot a few moments ago to 13,000 from middle position and was called by big blind Bryan Huang. The two players checked all the way to the river, 8♣4♣5♥4♠[10c]. Huang also checked that street, then called a bet of 16,000 from Spilkin. Spilkin showed down A♠[10s], having rivered tens and fours. His hand was good.
12:51pm: Robert Wang eliminated in 13th place
John Maklouf found himself a little caught. He opened his button with a standard raise, then saw Robert Wang shove in for about 15,000 more. Maklouf thought things through, then called with 7♦5♥. He was live against Wang's A♥4♦. It was Maklouf who connected with the board, making trip sevens, K♦[10c]7♥8♦7♣. Wang stood up, shook Maklouf's hand, and quickly left the tournament area.
12:48pm: Kiwis sticking around
Tim Clarke leaned back in his seat a few moments ago to get a look at Robert Wang's stack on Table 1. Clark, Wang, Emmerson Rewi and Tim Macbeth are the only Kiwis left in the field. Clarke's continued presence in the tournament was at risk after he opened all in with K♠J♥ and was called by Jason Gray's A♣Q♥. Clarke flopped two pair, K♥5♥J♣, then ducked any improvement by Gray on the 2♣ turn and 5♣ river. Each player now has roughly 80,000 in chips.
12:42pm: Emmerson Rewi flops good
Robert Wang opened from early position all in for about 80,000. Action passed all the way to big blind Emmerson Rewi, ho called all in for less -- 52,800 total. Rewi opened 8♣8♠ and was in bad shape against Wang's Q♠Q♦. But the flop bailed Rewi out with a beautiful eight -- 8♦3♥J♥. Running hearts, 5♥ and K♥, didn't improve Wang. He dropped to less than 30,000, while Rewi is now up to about 110,000.
12:29pm: Serge Mazza eliminated in 14th place
We've lost another player on Table 2. Team PokerStars Pro Bryan Huang opened pre-flop with a raise to 10,200. Serge Mazza was next to act and moved all in. Action passed to Michael Spilkin. He called the all-in re-raise, chasing everyone else from the pot. Spilkin's J♦J♠ had the better side of a flip against Mazza's A♠Q♣. Jacks were best on a board of 4♥[10c]6♥5♠K♦.
"Jacks held up for me," mused Spilkin. "What's going on boys? Good fold Mr. Huang."
"Bad fold for me," Huang replied.
12:18pm: Andrew Scarf eliminated in 15th place
On the second hand of the day, Andrew Scarf open-raised all in for 15,200. Action passed to big blind (and chip leader) Vesko Zmukic, who called with 7♣7♦. Scarf opened A♣J♦ and the raise was on. This one went to Zmukic on a board K♠8♣8♦Q♣7♥. Scarf then announced that he'd be willing to pair with the next player out for the teams event.
12:15pm: Shuffle up and deal
We're on the main gaming floor for the final two tables today. We're missing one player -- Tim Macbeth hasn't arrived yet.