APPT Sydney Day 1a: Level 7 (blinds 400-800, ante 75)

8:00pm: That's a wrap!

A rather dramatic end to the day has seen approximately 42 players survive to reach Day 2 action on Friday. It the end it appears that Manuel Hansimikali has bagged up the chip lead with 136,600, narrowly ahead of Reza Vakili (129,800) and Brett Bibby (129,300).

The defending champion, Aaron Benton is safely through to Day 2 with 59,400, while others to also survive the day in good shape include Jai Kemp (108,600), David Saab (94,900), Jackson Zheng (87,900), Jonathan Karamalikis (83,500) and Billy Argyros (54,200).

We'll have a complete wrap of the day's action including a full list of chip counts for you shortly.


Day 1a chip leader Manuel Hansimikali

7:55pm: Moshopoulos robbed

Just as Tournament Director Jason Wicks called for the last four hands of the day before bagging and tagging, Australia's Gordon Moshopoulos was involved in a controversial hand against Kristina Jeney.

We're unsure as to what had occurred prior to the pot being awared to Jeney, but Moshopoulos was pleading with the supervisors that he had verbalised his intent to raise before putting in the chips to call, only to have the dealer allegedy declare it a string bet. Our sources tell us that this occurred on the turn.

The only problem was that he had called over the supervisors after the hand had been played out in its entirety, so nothing could be done.

The big lesson here? If you are unsure about anything or if you need to get a ruling or clarification, stop the game and call for the floor immediately.

7:50pm: Bibby takes a late hit

Canadian Brett Bibby was looking set to bag up the tournament chip lead but he's just taken a small hit after doubling up a short stack.

Bibby fired 4,000 on the flop of 7♠7♣5♥ and then called when his opponent moved all in for an additional 12,925. Bibby opened pocket nines which was in front against his opponent's A♥Q♣.

The 2♣ turn card changed nothing but an ace from space A♠ on the river gave his opponent the double up as Bibby slipped to 135,000.

7:35pm: Vakili vaults up the charts

Australia's Reza Vakili is now amongst the chip leaders, sitting on 136,000 in chips, despite losing a small pot to Jai Kemp.

Vakili, Kemp and Billy "The Croc" Argyros all checked a flop and turn of K♠3♠A♣8♠ before Kemp led out for 1,900 on the river of the 3♣. Argyros folded and Vakili thought about it for about 30 seconds before calling, only to muck after Kemp tabled A♥8♥ for two pair.

Kemp is still well in contention, holding 93,000 in chips, while Argyros is on more than 45,000 as we head towards the end of the day's play.

7:30pm: Moose no match for Superman

Raemin Alexander has fallen short of reaching day two after his recent elimination at the hands of David Saab. It was Alexander's T♦T♠ racing with Saab's A♥K♠ but Saab spiked a pair on the board of 6♥4♦8♠K♣Q♦.

Alexander hits the rail as Saab climbs to 100,000.

7:20pm: Bibby banks more chips

Australian Manuel Hansimikali has just been surpassed for the chip lead by Canada's Brent Bibby, who now sits on more than 140,000 after eliminating an opponent shortly after the break.

All the money ended up in the middle on a board that read 3♦A♠Q♥4♥. The opponent tabled 9♥9♦ but found himself in a world of hurt when Bibby showed A♥A♣ for top set.

To add insult to injury, Bibby improved to a full house on the river and by the time the dealer shipped him the pot, the opponent was already a speck in the distance, marching quickly out of the room and down the hall towards the hotel lifts.

7:10pm: The Cook and the Dong

Greg Cook has lost his battle with his short stack and once again it was the giant-killing Jonathan Karamalikis who did the damage.

Cook went with A♦K♥ but ran smack into the A♥A♣ of Karamalikis. The flop of Q♠4♥T♦ did give Cook a few outs to a straight but it wasn't to be on the 3♣ turn or 3♦ river. Cook departs as Karamalikis is now up to 90,000 chips.

7:00pm: Play resumes

The players are back with one level left to play before we call it an evening. Manuel Hansimikali has shot into the chip lead with 115,000, followed by Jackson Zheng and Miray Badaoui. Defending champ Aaron Benton is nicely placed in the middle of the pack, after behaving himself last night at the Welcome Party at Star City's rooftop Astral Bar. Of course, some behaved better than others, but a lot of fun was had by all. Check it out...

APPT Sydney Grand Final live updates brought to you courtesy of Heath "TassieDevil" Chick and Landon Blackhall.