ANZPT Canberra Day 1b: Level 7 (blinds 300-600, ante 50)
7:50pm: Day 1b, and Wally the Wombat, is in the bag
The clock has ticked down and the players have found some chatter after surviving day one action. It looks like we'll have around 41 survivors including Team PokerStars Pro Tony Hachem who made it through the day with 18,150.
"He who survives, lives to fight another day," laughed Hachem after a rough day at the office.
Luke Edwards, Billy Jordanou and Andrew Scarf have bagged up healthy stacks, while Michael Kanaan, Jarred Graham and David Gorr have all survived. However the end-of-day chip leader, once again, is the stalwart of Australian poker, Leo "The Mechanic" Boxell.
Late in the day, Boxell picked up a nice pot when he made a straight to better his opponent's two pair, and will take 79,925 into battle tomorrow. There was a little controversy to end the day however, as Boxell was adamant that "Wally the Wombat" (his soft toy) should be allowed to be sealed in the bag. The floor staff weren't convinced.
"He's allowed in every other casino in Australian and New Zealand!" defended Boxell, "He's the custodian of the chips!"
Eventually it was ruled that Wally could go in the bag, and with that, our day has come to an end. We'll be back with a wrap of the day's action and full chip counts of the field for you shortly.
7:30pm: Chevalier flushed
Danny Chevalier is the latest casualty from the ANZPT Canberra Main Event as he won't be improving on his third place in the ANZ Player of the Year.
Manny Rodrigues opened to 1,700 before Chevalier moved all in for 7,900. However it was Khiem Nguyen that he had to worry about as he made the call to force a fold from Rodrigues. Chevalier showed A♦T♥ but Nguyen had K♣K♠.
The flop of A♣Q♣9♣ put Chevalier into the lead and he stayed there through the 3♠ turn, but the J♣ river gave Nguyen a flush for the knockout blow. Nguyen is up to 46,000.
7:20pm: Grujic gathers momentum
Oliver Grujic must've caught wind of Jesse McKenzie's elimination as he's been inspired to collect a nice pot from Aussie Millions champ David Gorr.
Gorr himself was on the short stack not long ago but managed to get himself up to around 30,000 prior to this hand. We caught the action on the flop of 9♣7♥J♥ with Gorr check-calling for 2,300 from the small blind before both players checked the 9♠ turn. On the 2♥ river Gorr attempted a blocking bet of 1,000 but Grujic was having none of it as he raised to 5,800. Gorr thought for a few moments before making the call, but mucked when Gurjic showed Q♥T♥ for the rivered flush.
Gorr slips to 23,000 with Grujic up to 50,000 and looking strong.
7:15pm: McKenzie mauled
Jesse McKenzie has been bundled out of the tournament in unfortunate fashion. Facing a raise to 1,500 and a call, McKenzie squeezed all in for 7,300 holding pocket eights. The original raiser folded but the other player called with pocket sixes.
McKenzie was heading towards a double up but the [a][j] board gave his opponent the two-outer six to eliminate McKenzie from the tournament. The ANZ Player of the Year race is open once again with the remaining top five - Oliver Grujic, Danny Chevalier, Octavian Voegele and Leo Boxell all still alive in this tournament.
7:10pm: Rafferty ruled out
Tom Rafferty's wild ride today has come to an end at the hands of Tony Hachem. Action folded around to Rafferty in the small blind and he moved all in for around 5,000 with [k] but Hachem made the call with A♦3♦. An ace and a three on board gave Hachem two pair to take the pot and eliminate Rafferty. Hachem is back to 18,000.
7:00pm: Hachem hurting
Tony Hachem opened with a raise from under the gun to 1,700 and found a call from Omer Silajdzija in the small blind to see a 8♥7♥8♠ flop. Silajdzija checked it over to Hachem who bet 3,200. Silajdzija made the call and the turn brought the 5♦. Both players checked before the river landed a co-ordinated 6♦.
Silajdzija tossed out a single, blue 5,000-denomination chip but Hachem jumped out of the way as Silajdzija showed 9♦T♦ for a rivered straight.
Silajdzija is up to 55,000 with Hachem down to 9,000.
6:50pm: Play resumes
The players are back with the big screen saying that 51 players are still alive on Day 1b. Yesterday level seven was where we saw all the carnage, so we expect a few more fireworks again today.
Andrew Scarf is amongst the chip leaders with 65,000 while Team PokerStars Pro Tony Hachem battling on around 15,000.