APPT Auckland: Grigg's dominant day
We set sail today with 96 wide-eyed voyagers on a journey to ride the seas and arrive safely to our destination - a berth on day three of the PokerStars.net APPT Auckland Main Event. Along the way there were casualties; some were a tad reckless while a few others were just plain unlucky, as just 28 managed to live to fight another day.
Early on the action was with young Aussie Andrew Hinrichsen as he appeared set to take the tournament by the neck and shake it around in his usual aggressive fashion. However he came unstuck and was one of the day's casualties as he ran his ace-king into the pocket aces of Srdjan Mitrovic. Hinrichsen's day was typical of the flow of play - many players held a lot of potential today but things just didn't go their way.
Along the way we lost the last Team PokerStars Pro member in local Lee Nelson. His final stand came with king-queen on a king high board, but "The Mechanic" Leo Boxell spiked an ace on the river with his ace-jack to make two pair and send Nelson to the rail. Tournament veteran Boxell on the other hand is rejuvenated in recent times and will be looking to make an impact deep in this tournament after surviving the day in good shape.
Another who started the day full of promise was ANZPT Gold Coast champion Nauv Kashyap who entered the day as one of our chip leaders. Kashyap started well after flopping a straight to win a big pot, but after he was caught bluffing and then had to make a big fold with pocket kings, the downward spiral continued and eventually his ace-jack fell to the ace-king of Mike Tyler.
Others to fall during the day included Josh Barrett, Ricky Kroesen, Jai Kemp, Cole Swannack, Joel Dodds, Nigel Brine, Richard Lancaster, Mike King and Kevin Petersen who fell in back-to-back coolers against overnight chip leader Noah Vogelman. It was full house over full house followed by aces versus kings as the PokerStars qualifier maintained his place at the top of the leaderboard.
However he was unable to challenge the dominance of Tom "tollgate" Grigg. After starting the day with just 16,400 chips, Grigg was ruthlessly aggressive with devastating efficiency, especially once armed with a big stack. He caught some cards, made some moves and his timing was faultless.
A flush-over-flush hand against Ropati Toleafoa, got Grigg's day going in the right direction, before a great call with third pair against Zack Lowrie, left Grigg oozing with confidence and chips. His stack increased further when his pocket queens held against pocket nines, before the final surge came when his A♠Q♠ held against the A♥J♥ of Marc Wittkopf as the board ran out 9♥9♠3♥4♠J♠. Wittkopf paired his jack but Grigg made a flush to scoop the monstrous pot and end the day with around one-eighth of the total chips in play and more than double his nearest rival!
Others to make it safely though including Australian tournament veterans Julius Colman and Leo Boxell, New Zealand hip hop artisit Brotha D, and Kiwi Lance Climo who will be seeking back-to-back APPT Auckland final tables after his 8th place finish last year.
Overnight Top Ten
Tom Grigg (PokerStars qualifier) - 546,300
Santi Soriano Ramos (PokerStars qualifier) - 265,300
Danny 'Brotha D' Leaoasavaii - 245,800
Srdjan Mitrovic (PokerStars qualifier) - 245,200
Lance Climo (PokerStars qualifier) - 217,100
Noah Vogelman (PokerStars qualifier) - 195,900
Ropati Toleafoa - 194,500
Tamas Lendvai (PokerStars qualifier) - 166,800
Ardmore Vakalahi - 159,600
Aaron Sue - 151,900
The action will recommence in the SKYCITY Auckland Poker Room at 12:15pm local time tomorrow where a short day is expected to burst the bubble and reduce our field to the final table of nine.
Day 3 Table Draw
Seat 1: Ian Parnell (PokerStars Qualifier) - 47,100
Seat 2: Tamas Lendvai (PokerStars Qualifier) - 166,800
Seat 3: Julian Parmann (PokerStars Qualifier) - 53,000
Seat 4: Damien Wong - 66,300
Seat 5: John Harman - 133,800
Seat 6: Santi Soriano Ramos (PokerStars Qualifier) - 265,300
Seat 8: Julius Colman - 120,700
Seat 1: Leo Boxell - 120,500
Seat 2: Noah Vogelman (PokerStars Qualifier) - 195,900
Seat 4: Shaun Gray - 88,200
Seat 5: Mike Tyler - 81,100
Seat 6: Ardmore Vakalahi - 159,600
Seat 7: Danny Silk (PokerStars Qualifier) - 114,600
Seat 8: Lance Haysam - 134,800
Seat 1: Akshay Nauhria - 56,500
Seat 2: Ropati Toleafoa - 194,500
Seat 3: AJ Bertenshaw - 23,300
Seat 4: Aaron Sue - 151,900
Seat 6: Tao Luo - 99,000
Seat 7: Danny 'Brotha D' Leaoasavaii (SKYCITY Auckland Sponsored Player) - 245,800
Seat 8: Lance Climo (PokerStars Qualifier) - 217,100
Seat 1: Kani Edwards - 43,600
Seat 2: Tom Grigg (PokerStars Qualifier) - 546,300
Seat 3: Srdjan Mitrovic (PokerStars Qualifier) - 245,200
Seat 4: Linh Tran (PokerStars Macau Satellite Qualifier) - 103,800
Seat 6: Luke Edwards (PokerStars Qualifier) - 34,700
Seat 7: Eddie Mascadri (PokerStars Qualifier) - 69,100
Seat 8: Sam Courtenay - 107,300