ANZPT Sydney: The Long Grind Begins

Some players would have slept like babies last night. We are talking about guys like Ashley Mason, Gary Benson and Dale Marsland. After all, they do have huge chip stacks and are sitting pretty to make a deep run here on Day 2 of the ANZPT Sydney Main Event. Other players may have had restless nights as they stare down the barrel of their short stacks and a seemingly inevitable demise. The only words of advice us humble poker bloggers can offer is for the players to try and relax. Why? Because with 175 players currently taking their seats at the beginning of Day 2, we are a long way off the money and even longer off the end of the night.

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The bags are out and the dealers are getting ready for a long night

The last two days of poker here at The Star have been interesting to say the least. We had 206 players whittled down to 86 on Day 1a and then a big field of 254 on Day 1b became 89. That means 175 players have made the trek back to the tables today to take part in Day 2 of the ANZPT Sydney Main Event. Just because of pure probabilities, we would usually be writing about an Aussie player who was leading the charge, but not this time. No, this time it is a player from the UK who leads the field with a monster 253,800-chip stack.

For much of Day 1b, Ashley Mason went under our radar, but that changed towards the end of the night. Considering Gary Benson finished with 193,000 in chips on Day 1, and with the blinds only at 500-1,000 at the end of the day, we weren't expecting anyone to surpass that amount on Day 1b. How wrong we were. Mason crushed Day 1b to finish with a sickening 250 big blind stack. Despite not having too many notable live tournament results on his live resume, Mason is not a player to be taken lightly. Back in 2011, Mason , playing under his PokerStars screen name "DYBYDX", took down the prestigious $10,000 WCOOP High Roller event for a $430,000 score. That's worth a whole lot of street cred in the poker world and we are sure Mason will be looking to add to that cred here in Sydney.

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How many chips is too many? Ask Ashley Mason

Mason, along with the rest of the field, have just taken their seats, ripped their bags open and the dealers have started to let the cards fly. We are beginning the day at level 9, with blinds at 600-1,200, and at this point all we know is that we are going to be playing at least ten levels of poker. In that time it is unlikely we will make the final table, but we will certainly be in the money and getting closer to solidifying our final nine.

Joshua Bell
@PokerStars in Sydney