ANZPT Melbourne Day 3: Levels 21-22 (blinds 8,000-16,000, ante 2,000)
3:55pm: Ten-minute break
The wind back of the clock seems to have slowed the pace of this tournament with the short stacks enjoying the breathing room and the tight players sitting back to pick their spots. Tom Wing and Phil Willcocks remain the most aggressive players on the table and are sharing the majority of pots.
After the break Karan Punjabi and Nick Georgeoulas will be under some pressure to move their last ten big blinds in to the middle.
3:50pm: Four-bet aggression from Willcocks
Just before the break we saw Phil Willcocks kick it up a gear in his relentless pressurizing of his opponents. Willcocks opened to 32,000 with Danny Chevalier calling in the cutoff before Brett Chalhoub took several minutes before three-betting to 93,000.
Back on Willcocks and he four bet to 154,000 which was enough to force folds from both opponents as the Kiwi raked in another pot.
3:40pm: Wing applies some heat
After folding to a three-bet from Brett Chalhoub, Tom Wing decided to try a three-bet of his own the very next hand as he popped it to 87,000 from the cutoff, following the open-raise to 33,000 from Danny Chevalier.
Chevalier thought for some time before matching the bet as the flop came down Q♥9♣A♠. Chevalier decided to lead out with a bet of 80,000 but Wing responded with a raise to 230,000. It was too much for Chevalier as he gave it up with Wing flashing J♣T♦ for an open-ended straight draw to the delight of his supporters on the rail.
Wing extends his lead to 1.45 million with Chevalier slipping to around 900,000.
3:20pm: Punjabi chops
It's been a relatively quiet start to the final table with one preflop pot going the way of Justin Sanchez, while Karan Punjabi survived an all-in clash.
Sanchez opened from the hijack to 35,000 before Phil Willcocks popped it to 75,000 on the button. It folded back to Sanchez who slid out a stack of yellows and there was some confusion from Willcocks as to whether the raise was more than the minimum amount. The dealer confirmed it was an additional 65,000 to Willcocks and he decided to give it up.
Moments later and Punjabi moved his short stack all in with A♥K♠ and Brett Chalhoub made the call in the big blind, only to table the same hand - A♦K♦. The board fell J♣4♠8♦8♣T♦ and the players chopped it up. Punjabi stays alive with around 200,000 chips.
2:55pm: Final table lineup
Here's how they have been seated for the ANZPT Melbourne final table:
Seat 1: Karan Punjabi
Seat 2: Phil Willcocks
Seat 3: Danny Chevalier
Seat 4: Tom Wing
Seat 5: Lee Nelson
Seat 6: Brett Chalhoub
Seat 7: Nick Georgeoulas
Seat 8: Stephen Eliesen
Seat 9: Justin Sanchez
Tom Wing holds onto a narrow chip lead with a little over one million chips, but Phil Willcocks, Lee Nelson and Danny Chevalier are all lurking close behind with a tick under the one million chip mark.
The clock has been wound back over one full level to the start of Level 21 with the blinds at 8,000-16,000 with a 2,000-chip ante.
2:50pm: Seonglee Ang eliminated in 10th place
Seonglee Ang has been eliminated on in 10th place as the final table bubble, and he was rather unfortunate to do so.
Ang's last chips were all in preflop following a 40,000 open from Phil Willcocks. It was another 331,000 to call and Willcocks obliged, opening Q♥Q♣ but he was in bad shape against Ang's K♠K♦.
However the board of Q♦3♠T♣2♦6♣ spiked a set for Willcocks to see Ang collect $8,680 after a fine tournament.
With that elimination the clock has been paused as the players redraw for the final table of nine.
2:35pm: Chevalier overpowers Sanchez
Justin Sanchez has taken a big hit in a preflop battle with Danny Chevalier. It started with Sanchez opening to 40,000 on the button. Chevalier re-raised to 100,000 from the big blind but Sanchez was a non-believer as he made it 200,000 to go.
Back with Chevalier and he quickly and quietly announced himself all in, with Sanchez just as immediately tossing his cards into the muck in dismay.
Chevalier takes a nice pot without even seeing a flop to move up to 970,000 with Sanchez slipping down to 355,000.
2:25pm: Erich Stadler eliminated in 11th place
With Stephen Eliesen aggressively pushing his short stack over on Table 29, Erich Stadler tried the same on the feature table when he moved all in for 195,000 from the button. However Tom Wing made the call in the small blind.
The board ran out 2♦Q♥Q♠9♠6♣ to leave Wing's pair in front to eliminate Stadler as the first casualty of the day in 10th place for $8,680 in prize money.
Wing is now up to around 1.3 million for a sizable chip advantage over the final ten players.
2:15pm: We're underway on Day 3
Welcome back to the Crown Poker Room for the third and final day of the PokerStars.net ANZPT Melbourne Main Event. We have eleven players remaining with two more bustouts before we reach our official final table.
PokerStars qualifier Tom Wing leads the way as the only player in the seven-figure club, but he has his eye on the six-figure prize money club with $156,550 up top for our winner this evening.
The players are in their seats and have unbagged their chips before being introduced to the crowd on the rail. With the formalities out of the way, Day 3 is now underway!