ANZPT Melbourne Day 1: Level 9 (blinds 500-1,000, ante 100)

10:30pm: That's a wrap

The final three hands have come and gone with John Apostolidis slipping back to the pack as PokerStars qualifier Ryan Hong emerged as a late chip leader when the players bagged and tagged.

Hong ended the day with 178,800 with Apostolidis likely to be next best with 140,300. Ryan Larkin, Stephen Eliesen, Jesse McKenzie and Mario Ljubicic are also above the 100,000 mark as 113 players survived the day.

We'll have confirmation of the chip counts and a wrap of the day's action for you shortly.

10:15pm: Grigg applies some heat

We already know that poker is not always about the cards as Tom Grigg just proved after escaping elimination with some intense pressure on his opponent.

After opening under the gun to 2,200, Grigg was faced with a re-raise to 5,200 on the button from David Bonadio. After several minutes of thought Grigg moved all in for 40,000 as the two exchanged some friendly banter.

"Are you repping aces? Will you show?" asked Bonadio.

"If you fold and show, then I'll show," agreed Grigg.

Bonadio eventually folded and showed T♠T♥ as Grigg tabled 9♣9♠. Oops!

"Nines is the lowest pocket pair I'd shove there, so it's probably a good fold," said Grigg as he moved up to close to 50,000.

A few moments later Grigg flopped a straight and got paid off to end the day with over 80,000.

10:00pm: Elementary my dear Watson

"I've seen it too many times!" laughed Paul Ravesi after dodging a massive bullet that would've resulted in his elimination from the tournament.

The action went down on a flop of A♠J♥9♥ with a short stack moving all in for 7,700. Ravesi made the call but Brett Watson wasn't going away as he bumped it to 25,000. Ravesi took another look at his J♦9♠ two pair before open-folding it to the surprise of the table.

It was a great fold as Watson showed A♣J♣ for a better two pair. However the hand wasn't done with just yet as the K♦ turn and K♣ river counterfeited Watson's kicker to leave the short stack to remarkably triple up holding A♥Q♠ for the worst hand of the three.

Watson slips to 105,000 with Ravesi at 55,000.

9:50pm: Boxell runs into The Virus

It's been a while since Leo Boxell felt the pain of elimination from the Crown Poker Room in a Main Event, but his run has come to an end at the hands of Paul "The Virus" Ravesi.
Boxell raised preflop and then committed the rest of his short stack with [j][t] on a [j][8][9] flop. Top pair and an open-ended straight draw looked pretty good, until Ravesi showed [q][t] for the flopped straight.

The turn and river brought no help for Boxell and he was sent to the rail as Ravesi climbs to 77,000 chips.


Leo Boxell misses out on points but is going to be hard to catch in the ANZ Player of the Year race

9:40pm: You're the voice, try and understand it!

We love it when Paul Khoury gets chips because we get to hear the dulcet tones of "The Voice" a little longer. Khoury waited for the pocket rockets and got paid off when the flop came down 8♥3♠T♥. The big blind checked and Khoury moved all in for 12,450 with A♥A♠ as the big blind called with Q♠T♠ for top pair.

The turn was the 2♠ and river the 4♥ to double up Khoury to 36,000.


We can still see you Paul!

9:30pm: Play resumes - last level of the day!

The players are back following the break with the cards in the air for the last level of the day.

When a player comes up to you during the break, and asks how much the chip leader has, you know that person probably has a big stack. John Apostolidis was the curious cat on this occasion, and yes John you are the clear chip leader entering the home straight. Apostolidis has 175,000 which is well ahead of Jesse McKenzie, Brett Watson and Phil Willcocks. Can he hold onto the lead over the next hour? We're about to find out!