APPT Cebu: Day 1B, Levels 5 & 6 (blinds 300-600, ante 50)

7:20pm: Day 1b is in the books

That brings an end to our day here at the PokerStars.net APPT Cebu Main Event. It looked like the chip lead was going to be with Richard En but it was the late surge of local Filipino Ronaldo "Mike" Puno that took the unofficial lead with 85,700 just ahead of En's 85,300.

ronaldo_puno_appt_cebu.jpg

Ronaldo "Mike" Puno ended with a flurry to snatch the end of Day 1b chip lead

Others in good shape include Alexander Beeckx (73,225), Bryan Huang (68,500) and Max Bloom (65,600). Joe Hachem, Raymond Wu, Tony Hachem, Ivan Tan, Mishel Anunu, Nathanael Seet and Rennie Carnevale also made it safely through to day two.
We'll have a complete wrap of the day's action and official counts for you shortly.

7:15pm: Tae Joon Noh crashes late

In the final hands of play, the tournament of PokerStars Team Asia Pro Tae Joon Noh came crashing down as he was eliminated from the tournament.

He lost most of his chips on a flop of 4♠8♦3♦ when he moved all in with 8♥5♥ against the 9♠9♦ of Edwin Marzan. The turn was the Q♣ and river the 7♣ to leave Noh crippled to his last 875.

They were all in very next hand as again it was Marzan who made the call. Noh once again held 8♣5♣ as Marzan showed A♦K♠. The board bricked out J♣T♣9♦T♥4♠ to see Noh eliminated from day 1a.

7:08pm: Final hands of the day

With the tournament clock paused at 12:53 left in the day, dealers have been instructed to deal four more hands each. Currently Richard En appears to have the biggest stack with about 83,000, but several players at nipping at En's heels. One medium-sized pot in the last four hands could affect that end-of-day chip lead.

6:55pm: Marvs takes one out

Michael Marvanek is now up to 28,000 after eliminating a short-stacked player. It was Marvanek's J♠8♠ up against his opponent's A♥T♣.

The flop of 5♠9♠Q♣ was nice for Marvanek as he picked up both straight and flush outs, one of which was the T♦ which landed on the turn. Marvanek made an unbeatable straight as the meaningless river was the 2♦.

6:44pm: Anunu takes one from Choi

There are lots of medium-sized stacks in the room right now, and they're making for some interesting poker. Over on Table 11, Inwook Choi opened a flop of K♣[10c]2♠ for 1,650 after Mishel Anunu checked. Anunu called to the turn [10h], then led into Choi for 2,600. Choi silently pushed his cards into the center of the table with his fingertips.

Meanwhile, over on Table 2, the table that started the day off with lots of huge pots is ending it with a few huge pots. Richard En was the beneficiary of the most recent pot when his pocket tens held against an opponent's ace-ten as he puts himself in position to end the day as the chip leader.

Official numbers

Registration has now been locked out with Daniel Neilson, Ben Abrahams and a sick Joe Hachem taking advantage of the late registration to boost our number of entrants to 161 for today's flight.

This puts the total number of entrants for the 2010 APPT Cebu Main Event at 236 players. We'll have the official payout information for you as soon as it's made available.

Hachem has recently arrived at the table and will play out the last level of the day, while Neilson has reached the final table of the event in Macau so will be unlikely to join us tomorrow.

6:30pm: Can't win two flips in a row

It's one step forwards and two steps back at the moment for Andrew Watson. After recently finding a double up, Watson has given the chips back again in another preflop race.

It was Watson's pocket tens again with the mathematical lead against his opponent's A♠Q♣ but this time it went the other way as the board ran out Q♦Q♠6♠A♣K♠ to give his opponent a double up.

"I guess I can't win two flips in a row!" sighed Watson as he slipped to 10,000 in chips.

andrew_watson_appt_cebu.jpg

Andrew Watson enjoying the swings at the APPT Cebu

6:20pm: Level up, blinds 300-600, ante 50

6:18pm: Cheeky Beeckx

Alexander Beeckx is one of our chip leaders and he's proving that he doesn't just need good cards. After opening to 1,050, Beeckx was faced with a three-bet from Luke Edwards on the button to 3,000. Action folded back to Beeckx who looked at Edwards' stack before splashing the pot with a four-bet of around 7,100. Before the chips could be determined, Edwards' cards had hit the muck.

"I knew it!" said Beeckx as he flashed the rather marginal K♦5♠.

6:15pm: Tug of war in Bloom

Max Bloom, the executioner earlier in the day of Team PoekrStars Pro Celina Lin, seems to be taking it towards one other player at the table. The two were involved in a huge pot, with Bloom's nemesis moving all in for 16,025 on the turn of a 5♥7♥7♦8♣ board. Bloom tanked for about a minute before folding.

"Sick bluff if it is," said Bloom. "It'd be really sick if you were bluffing again."

The next hand Bloom's nemesis opened for 1,050. "Vindication," said Bloom as he stuck in a re-raise to 3,100. Action folded back around to the original raiser. He didn't take his foot of the gas. A third raise, to 6,600, made its way into the pot. That was finally enough to end the action.

Bloom is sitting behind roughly 60,000.

6:00pm: Watson back in the black

Andrew Watson has found a much-needed double up to get himself back on track here at the APPT Cebu Main Event. Watson, runner-up at the ANZPT Queenstown event earlier this year, hasn't been able to get much going today, but winning a flip might be the kick-start he needs.

With a raise in front, Watson moved all in for another 8,575. His opponent deliberated for several moments before matching the bet with Watson showing the pair with 7♣7♥ against the A♠Q♣ overcards.

The board ran out full of blanks as it landed 8♠9♣4♦J♦4♥ to give Watson the double up to around 21,000.

5:52pm: A sigh and a fold

Tony Hachem is a great guy to spend time with doing anything. Whether it's going out for a meal, downing a few beers, or playing poker, Hachem always keeps it entertaining. Even in the face of adversity, Hachem remains positive and upbeat.

We'd certainly forgive Hachem for letting loose a little note of frustration today, however. After doubling up early, it's been a long slow slide for Hachem, punctuated by a recent hand that checked all the way to the river, 6♦K♦9♦[10d]A♦. Hachem, the Team PokerStars Pro, checked a third time, then saw his opponent reaching for chips.

"Play the board?" Hachem asked hopefully. "What are you doing? Sure you want to do that?"

Hachem's opponent was indeed sure. He made a small bet of 1,000 that drew a sigh, and then a fold, from Hachem.

tony_hachem_appt_cebu.jpg

Tony Hachem is feeling the strain late in the day

5:40pm: Maklouf's empire takes a hit

John Maklouf's empire has just taken some damage after his flopped set wasn't enough to drag in a pot. It wasn't a huge pot however as his opponent was short-stacked as he pushed his flush draw holding 6♣8♣ on the 2♥3♣Q♣ flop as Maklouf wasn't going anywhere with his 2♦2♠.

The turn was a 5♦ brick but the river was the A♣ to complete the flush as another 7,000 was shipped from Maklouf's stack. He's down to 64,000.

5:35pm: Schneider stirring the pot

Romanian PokerStars qualifier Robert Schneider has raked in another nice pot to jump up towards the chip leaders. The board read Q♠A♠T♣Q♥T♥ when Schneider moved all in over the top of his opponent's 12,000-chip bet on the river. Schneider only had a few thousand more so this was one of those "you either have it, or you don't" situations.

"C'mon, you obviously don't have a queen!" jabbed Schneider as his opponent tossed his cards away.

Schneider decided to dig the knife in a little deeper as he flashed the 5♥. A bottle of Manila Light to anyone who can guess his other card. Schneider is up to 55,000.

5:20pm: Play resumes

The players are back on the felt for the final two levels of the day. Australian John Maklouf is continuing his good form from the ANZPT season as he currently commands the biggest stack in the room with over 70,000 in chips.

Bryan Huang was soaring at around 60,000 at one point before coming back to the pack as Tony Hachem and Raymond Wu are moving along nicely with above average chip stacks. Tae Joon Noh is still hovering around his starting stack.

There's still no sign of an unwell Joe Hachem, and there's a chance that we may not see him take to the felt at all today.

APPT Cebu reporting comes courtesy of bloggers Heath "TassieDevil" Chick and Dave "F-Train" Behr.