APPT Sydney: Chase for the cash

It might be just after noon on a Friday, but the Star City Casino is heaving – the tables and slots are packed and 219 anxious poker players have started to assemble for day 2 in the APPT Grand Final. With the top 48 players paid, we should be close to the money before the end of play tonight.

Our chip leader Jason Gray has just wandered past the media area. Not the most gregarious character in the poker world, Gray offered a nervous smile as he headed for his seat.


Chip leader Jason Gray is ready for action

Gavin Griffin’s charge towards an incredible achievement of adding an APPT title to his WSOP, WPT and EPT tournament victories continues today, as he brings the second largest stack – 134,700. PokerStars qualifier Phillip Willcocks from New Zealand is close behind with 129,000.


Holding off the Aussie horde is NZ's Phillip Willcocks

We’ll also be keeping a close eye on the two other Team PokerStars Pros Lee Nelson and Chris Moneymaker who remain in contention.

The PokerStars Sponsored contingent is represented by Japan’s Masaaki Kagawa (who finished third in the 2007 Aussie Millions $100,000 buy-in High Stakes event); Ivan Tan from Singapore (two APPT cashes including one final table); Eric Assadourian (winner of the 2007 APPT Macau High Roller event) and the short-stacked Van Marcus (2008 APPT Manila champion). There are also 55 PokerStars qualifiers in today’s field.

The feature table line-up to start play is impressive: Jason Plant (27,100), Frank ‘The Bank’ Bianco (41,700), Chris Moneymaker (30,700), Tony Dunst (30,300), Christopher Lee (95,900), Irishman Anthony Rafter (68,600), Roberto Damelian (61,600), Dominic Sinagra (46,300) and Andy Meldrum (81,500). Structure for today’s play is:

Level 8: 400/800 (100 ante)
Level 9: 500/1000 (100 ante)
Level 10: 600/1200 (200 ante)
Level 11: 800/1600 (200 ante)
Level 12: 1000/2000 (300 ante)
Level 13: 1200/2400 (400 ante)
Level 14: 1500/3000 (500 ante)

Watch APPT Sydney S2: Day 2 Intro on