APPT Manila: Stars in the spotlight on day 1B

Players are making their way into the tournament area for day 1B of the Asia Pacific Poker Tour event in Manila, with anticipation high that last year’s number of 255 players will be surpassed. Yesterday, just 38 of the 149 players who took their seats at the start of the day were still in contention for the 2008 title after eight and a half hours play.

Some of the notables who survived were Pang Leng Josh Ang (Singapore, 88,800), the godfather of Filipino poker Wally Sombrero (60,100), David Saab (Australia, 43,100), Michael Chrisanthopoulos (Australia, 28,500), James Broom (Australia, 19,900), Ira Blumenthal (Thailand, 18,400) and local PokerStars Sponsored player Lesley “Sunshine” Samson (8700).

Today’s line-up features several big guns, headlined by the only Team PokerStars Pro in the field, Lee “Final Table” Nelson. The 2006 Aussie Millions champion has had a ball over the past few days, and has been called into action as a coach for the celebrity poker show being shot in the adjacent TV studio.


Let's gets those cards in the air: Lee Nelson is ready for action.

Other PokerStars Sponsored players in action on day 1B are Chinese-born Aussie Celina Lin, Singapore’s Ivan Tan, Van sirens Marcus, JJ Liu and 2008 Player of the Year contender John Phan.

The top two finishers from the APPT Seoul main event, Japan’s Yoshihiro Tasaka and Hidenari Shiono are also here, while we’re also thrilled to welcome back Brett Parise, last year’s APPT Manila winner, to defend his title.


Brett Parise, a year older and a year wiser.

The local PokerStars Sponsored contingent will be led by Neil “Dirty Ice Cream” Arce (winner of the third event on the PokerStars Filipino Poker Tour and the country’s highest profile player), 2004 Miss Earth winner Priscilla Meirelles and World Nine-ball Champion Alex “The Lion” Pagulayan.

We’re also keeping an eye out for Carter Gill (who has cashed in two APPT and two LAPT events in the past year), one of the world’s best known online players James AndyMcLEOD Obst, 2008 PokerNews Cup champion Nali “Iraqi Nick” Kaselias, 2007 & 2008 APPT Macau High Roller final table participant David Steicke, 2007 APPT Manila sixth-place finisher Roger Spets and 2008 APPT Macau champion Eddy Sabat.

Play will continue for eight and a half one-hour levels today, with a dinner break scheduled after level seven. And, of course, our coverage wouldn't be complete without a regular chip count.

Level 1: 25/50
Level 2: 50/100
Level 3: 100/200
Level 4: 100/200 (25 ante)
Level 5: 150/300 (25 ante)
Level 6: 200/400 (50 ante)
Level 7: 300/600 (75 ante)
Level 8: 400/800 (100 ante)
Level 9: 500/1000 (100 ante)

Watch APPT Manila 08: Michael Mariakis on