APPT Manila: Timely double-ups as bubble looms
Just 10 players short of the bubble, the heat is about to be turned up on the short stacks in the day 2 field at the PokerStars.net APPT Manila main event.
With blinds at 1000/2000 and a 300 ante, the 14 players with fewer than 20,000 in their stack are desperately looking for a big hand to make a move. PokerStars Sponsored player Celina Lin, one of the players feeling the pressure, said she’d barely spotted a playable hand all day.
Finally, Celina found pocket sevens which was enough for her to commit her remaining chips. She received a call (Q-3) but her pocket pair held up and she’s up to 40,000.
The good fortune rubbed off on the player seated to her immediate left – PokerStars Sponsored player Priscilla Meirelles. She committed her last 14,000 chips with A-J and found herself in a tough spot against pocket kings. But an ace on the flop has rejuvenated the stack of the 2004 Miss Earth.
One player who looks set to cruise through the bubble period is crowd favourite Melvin “The Miracle” Matibag. The exuberant Matibag is the yin to James Obst’s yang – the young Aussie displaying calmness and maturity at the table well beyond his 18 years.
Matibag called Obst’s all-in on a flop of 2d-4h-8h, but was well behind Obst’s pocket queens holding only K-2. Sure enough, another deuce fell on the river to make him trips, and the chant of “Miracle, Miracle” was off and running once again. Obst managed a wry smile.
Despite running his stack down below 30,000, the online wunderkind has since KOed two players to recover nicely as his first live tournament cash looms.
The top five in the chip count (approximately) are PokerStars Sponsored player Van Marcus (185,000), Chang Yong Suk (160,000), Hyoungjin Nam (145,000), Michael Shell (135,000) and Josh Pang Ang (120,000).