ANZPT Sydney Day 1a: Levels 1 & 2 (blinds 75-150)

2:30pm: Ten-minute break

2:25pm: Monster for Hinrichsen

Following an under-the-gun limp, Andrew Hinrichsen popped it 450 and found a cold call from the middle position player before the UTG-player sprung to life to make it 1,550 to go. Both players made the call and saw a flop of 8♦4♣7♦.

The UTG-player led out for 1,500 before Hinrichsen made it 5,500 to force a fold from the third player, as the UTG-player moved all in for 16,000. Hinrichsen made the call and tabled pocket eights for top set as the UTG-player showed a very creatively played 5♦3♦.

The turn was the 4♥ to improve Hinrichsen to an unbeatable full house as the river bricked the 2♠.

Hinrichsen more than doubles to 47,300 approaching the first break of the day.

2:20pm: Allan out

Dave Allan is an early casualty, when his ace-king failed to improve against an opponent's 8♣9♣. We assume the chips went in on the nine-high flop, but when Allan's opponent improved to two pair on the turn, Allan was left heading to an early exit.

2:10pm: Off The Felt

Have we mentioned how sunny it is in Sydney today? Sorry Melbourne, but it's a glorious day up here today, and we hope the sunshine continues tomorrow for our 30 PokerStars satellite package winners who will be enjoying some time "Off The Felt".

As part of their prize package, tomorrow the qualifiers will be enjoying their choice of a lunch cruise on spectacular Sydney harbour, dinner in Centerpoint tower with 360 degree views of the city or joining in a mental conditioning and training seminar with Dare 2 Dream's Jamie Glazier.

The ANZPT continues to provide players with a complete travel experience that is more than just a poker tournament. You can enjoy some time "Off The Felt" by qualifying online to the next ANZPT event on PokerStars.

1:55pm: All the aces

Following up from his third place at the season-opening ANZPT Adelaide event, Ian Parnell is in today's field and off to a good start, although he's probably thinking it could've been better after picking up aces against kings in the second level of the day.
Only problem was that there was a third player involved, and he also tabled pocket aces!

The chips were in preflop after a series of raises, with the board bricking out 8♣9♦2♠T♦5♦. The two players with aces chop up the pot as Parnell gets up to 31,100 chips.


Ian Parnell is continuing his good form from Adelaide

1:50pm: Jeffreys back in action

After taking a break from poker for a while, Andrew Jeffreys is now back spending more time on the felt as he takes his seat in today's field. He's up to 25,000 but just had to let one go after a scary river.

Jeffreys opened to 375 from the hijack, and found two callers in the cutoff and small blind to see a flop of Q♦6♣7♦. Action checked to Jeffreys who bet 575. The cutoff called as the small blind let it go.

The turn was the 2♣ and Jeffreys fired a second barrel worth 950. The two players exchanged some banter with Jeffreys commenting, "You gotta play the cards you are dealt!" as his opponent tossed out a call.

The river was the 3♦ to bring flush possibilities and it slowed Jeffreys to check to his opponent who bet 2,500. Jeffreys thought for a few moments but let it go with a shake of his head.


Andrew Jeffreys back on the felt in Sydney

1:40pm: Colourful Cartwright

Ash Cartwright caught our attention at the ANZPT in Perth, partly because of his colourful hairdo and partly for his great run where he fought back from a short stack to ultimately finish in 19th place.

He's off to a bright start here again in Sydney after getting an opponent to lay down a big hand. There was obviously some confusion earlier in the hand after Cartwright's opponent started chatting about a "sick misclick" but the upshot was the Cartwright had moved all in for his last 7,100 on a board of 5♦3♦A♣K♠ forcing his opponent to fold, claiming that he held two pair.

Cartwright is up to 30,000 on a solid table that includes Jarred Graham and John Caridad.

1:30pm: Level up, blinds 75-150

1:15pm: Roy rockets ahead

Roy Vandersluis is another who has found an early double up to eliminate an opponent. It was the classic cooler with Vandersluis holding pocket aces against his opponent's pocket kings. The board ran out T♦T♠7♥6♠9♣ to jump Vandersluis up to 38,000.

12:50pm: Who's here?

Some of those players already spotted in today's field include Jarred Graham, Andrew Jeffreys, Kristian Lunardi, Scott Kerr, Toothpick Tony, Liam Moffett, Jackie Glazier, Jay Kinkade, Ian Parnell, Leo Boxell, Sam Rotar, Connie Lai, Dale Marsland, Trung Tran, Andrew Watson, Andrew Hinrichsen, Tom Grigg, Julian Cohen and John Caridad as well as Kiwis Richard Lancaster and Brotha D.

12:45pm: Carwash opens early

Carwash George Cotaidis off to a fast start this afternoon, after tablemate Ian Parnell informed us of an early all in on his table. Apparently Cotaidis flopped a set and rivered a full house to get past his opponent's flopped nut flush. Cotaidis is now up to a double stack of nearly 40,000.


George Cotaidis off to a fast start at the ANZPT Sydney

12:40pm: Today's format

As always on the ANZPT, players will start with 20,000 in chips and enjoy generous one hour levels with the blinds kicking off at 50-100. We anticipate that we'll probably be playing seven levels today and lose around half the field before we bag, tag and hit tonight's player's party!

12:30pm: It's go time in Sydney!

Welcome to the Star City Casino in Sydney for the start of the 2011 ANZPT Sydney Main Event. It's the third stop on Season 3 and is typically the largest event on the tour with players flying in from all corners of the country for their shot at ANZPT glory.

There are currently 16 tables setup in the poker room for Day 1a with even more players expected to arrive tomorrow. Last year it was Angelo Hanataj who claimed an exciting victory over a field of 446 players to collect the $219,432 in prize money. Will we see another new name emerge on the scene this year, or will one of the one guard reign supreme?

The players have been welcomed the players to their seats and the official word has been given to shuffle up and deal!