ANZPT7 Melbourne Day 2: Birthdays and battles for Player of the Year

This stop in Melbourne is the last-ever ANZPT event and that means the final chance for players to earn themselves AZNPT Player of the Year points.

The frontrunners in the points race were out in force this week with over half of the current leaderboard Top 10 among the field here. Raiden Kan sits atop the ladder - he had 126.81 points when this tournament began. Kan was eliminated earlier today but will earn another 10 points for playing.

Right behind him and in the running on Day 2 include Englishman James Rann (125.38) and reigning Aussie Millions Main Event champion Manny Stavropoulos (107.19). Rann started the day with 40,100 in chips while Stavropoulos began with 59,800. They're both still in contention and in with a chance of taking out the Player of the Year title.

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Reigning Aussie Millions Main Event champion Manny Stavropoulos

Joining them in the field today and also a chance at Player of the Year are Aussie birthday boys Stevan Chew (95.00) and Anthony Legg (97.81). Unfortunately for Legg he started the day with 21,300 in chips but took to social media earlier to announce his elimination from the tournament.

"Thanks for the birthday love yesterday! :) and for guys in the poker world busted main KJ vs 44" Legg shared on Facebook.

While the Player of the Year dream may be over for Legg, for Chew it looks like a different story. Starting the day with 58,700 he's managed to run it up even further this afternoon despite taking a big hit after running ace-king into pocket kings.

Chew has already had a stellar year on the live circuit, cashing the Aussie Millions Main Event, the Perth ANZPT Main Event and taking down the APPT Seoul High Roller in April for $101,086. Meanwhile on the virtual felt he's fresh off a third place finish in the PokerStars $109 Sunday Rebuy, pocketing another $22,977.50 just last week.

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Stevan Chew after winning the APPT Seoul High Roller

While it may be his birthday, it's all business for Chew tonight.

"Online Majors tomorrow mate, I can't miss those" came the reply when he was asked if he'll be partying.

Chew currently sits in eighth spot in the ANZPT Player of the Year rankings and will be looking to improve on that with a deep run this week. Having already chipped up further to around 85,000 here now he looks well on his way to doing just that.

We'll be keeping a close eye on him and all of the Player of the Year contenders this afternoon. For now though the action continues as we pass the half way point of Day 2 for this ANZPT Melbourne Main Event.