PAGCOR Chairman's Cup: Level 5, 6 and 7 (400-800, 75 ante)

9.45pm: Play concluded
The last seven hands have come and gone and Day 1a has finished for today. Mark Takayama is runaway chip leader on 197,375. Official chip counts will appear here in an hour or so and a full wrap of the day's play will be up shortly.

9.30pm: Last 7 hands of the day
With 14 minutes remaining of the level Andrew Scott drew a 7 meaning that's the number of hands each table will play before we finish. Coverage will slow down now as we try to figure out who are the movers and shakers at the of the leader board.

9.20pm:Regis loses more
Ron Regis has lost some more of his stack and is down to 62,000. He and Albert Kim had made it all the way to the river where the board read 7♣2♦Q♣6♠9♥. Kim bet 10,000 and after some thought Regis called but mucked upon seeing his A♣Q♦. Kim up to 45,000.

9.15pm: Barry Busted
PokerStars qualifier Mark Kohner Jnr is the owner of a new poker strategy book written by Team PokerStars Pro Barry Greenstein and that means only one thing; he eliminated the great man. All the chips went in pre-flop with Greenstein holding pocket nines to Kohner Jnr's ace-queen. The door card was an ace and that was that. He received a warm round of applause as he left the tournament area.

9.05pm: Only fair someone else has them
Ron Regis has had pocket aces a few times today so it's only fair he runs in to them just to help balance out the universe and all that. Luckily for him his opponent's stack only sat at 7,950. All the chips went in pre-flop with A♣K♦ for Regis. The board ran 4♦3♣5♣7♦9♠ send the pot to his opponent. Regis still fairing well on 83,000.

8.55pm: Oh Shi...
Kevin Shi doesn't seem like the kind of player you want getting under your skin. Ed Lopez just had to fend off his advances in a hand that would send 10,000 to one of them.

On the flop of 5♥4♥T♦ Lopez checked to Shi on the button. Shi is a gangly chap, a little hyperactive in his chair, leaning low, staring constantly at Lopez, grinning too, at one point his head almost on the table as if tying to see the solution to the hand written under Lopez's chin.

He bet 1,700, still staring at Lopez, who then called for a 7♠ turn. Lopez then tried a different tack, betting first, 2,000 in total, which seemed to puzzle Shi who stopped laughing for a second before starting again. He then raised to 6,000. "Wow," he said, as Lopez called.

With a 9♦ on the river Lopez leant forward to see the board better. Sadly for him he needn't have bothered. He checked to Shi who bet 40,000 almost immediately, staring at Lopez in that slightly creepy way. Lopez passed, a hand worth forgetting. Shi, who was the last of the 99 players to register today, doing so with 15 minutes left in level two, took the chips and is now up to 35,000.

8.45pmMark Copping an elimination
Mark Copping has been eliminated by PokerStars qualifier Vartan Ohannesian. All the chips went in on the turn with the board reading A♥7♥A♠6♦. Copping tabled Q♦Q♣ but it was no match for the Swede's A♦J♠. The turn came 2♣ and Copping made his exit after wishing everyone well.

8.40pm: Level 6 done and dusted
We're moving straight on to level 7; the last of the day.

8.40pm: Playing with a smile
This has to be one of the nicest tournaments around in terms of atmosphere and the amount of fun players are having. Sure there's been people acting out of turn and speaking about the hand, revealing cards etc but none of it has been in malice.

Kevin Shi and Mark Kohner Jr just played a hand out and the whole way through were smiling. Kohner Jr had raised from early position and was called by his neighbor and Shi in the big blind. The flop came A♣7♠2♣ and Shi tried to bet out 200 but the dealer told him the minimum was 600 so that's what he bet. Kohner Jr called but the other player folded. Both players checked the K♦ turn before Shi check-called a 3,200 bet on the K♠ river. Kohner Jr tabled 8♥8♦ and it was good for the pot as a still smiling Shi mucked his hand. Kohner Jr on 24,500 after the hand.

8.30pm: Tackling Takayama
A massive three way all-in, met with huge cheers, some from people watching but most from the players. One player actually, Mike Takayama, yelling the expression "ship it!" a casual proclamation that like "run away!" and "get in!" seems to pass understood regardless of the language barrier, as he raked in a 50,000 pot.

For the others all was lost on the turn, with a board showing A♥3♥T♦Q♥.

Takayama turned over K♥6♥ to an A♣7♣ and the T♥J♥ of Sun Loh. Showing a casual disregard for the feeling of defeated foes, Takayama allowed himself another shriek before sitting down to stack a lot of chips. Right now his count is around the 150,000 mark.

8.20pm: Not the Custodio thing to do
Guillaume Patry has just left the tournament laughing after being eliminated by Atanacio Custodio. There was an early position limp before Patry moved all in for 18,750 from the cut-off. Custodio was in the next seat and sat there for a short while before asking for a count of Patry's stack. Once the stack was counted he moved all in for a few hundred more. The original player folded before Patry reveled 4♥4♦. Cutodio sat there until he was prompted to opened his holding and to everyone's surprise he showed A♦A♥. Patry started laughing at the situation and didn't stop as the board came A♥J♣K♦T♥4♠ to eliminate him. Hitting a set on the river was no use.

8.05pm: Sia-ing into the lead
The latest hand to cause a stir, and let's face it, most do, featured a three way all-in, from which Eric Sia emerged the better off.

Sia showed aces to Lisa Shy's queen-jack and Aris Antonio's pocket tens. The board missed the lot, leaving the loot to Sia, who moved up to 60,000. Both Shy and Antonio were eliminated, although they happily chatted about their fate on the rail.

Chip leader right now though has more than Sia. Ron Regis has close to 80,000 which puts him on top

8pm: On a nice little Ron
Ron Regis has eliminated another player to add more chips to his stack that currently sits at around 65,000. Riacrdo Anselmo Tablang was the unfortunate soul who got his chips in good but came out behind. The flop was out as 2♣T♥4♠ with 4,500 in the middle and Tablang opened shoved for 4,300. He then begged Regis to call and he obliged with A♦K♥ for over cards. Tablang tabled Q♦T♠ fro top pair and all was looking good when the turn brought 9♠ but the river came K♣ to end it for him.

7.50pm: Maric richer
Nikica Maric opened for 500 shortly after returning from the break. Anatacio Custodio, who has played the entire day with his bag over his shoulder, like he's ready to leave, called, as did the players known as Muukhbayor in the small blind for a flop of 8♥3♣T♣.
Muukhbayor checked and Maric raised to 1,500 total. Custodio called, still ready to leave, while Muukhbayor muucked (apologies).

The turn came 8♠. This time Maric checked. Custodio did the same for a T♠ on the river. Maric bet another 4,000, finally persuading Custodio to pass. He did, Maric raking in the pot.

Note: The action for this hand took about 45 seconds.

7.40pm:"I'm back from dinner and I'm all in!"
Jesus Boy Yap raised from the button before Batsuren Tserendorj moved all in from the small blind followed by Victor De Guzman from the big blind. Yap folded to leave it at heads-up showdown.

Tserendorj had De Guzman's 9,600 stack covered but only by a little. De Guzman was up out of his chair preaching to the whole room "I'm back from dinner and I'm all in," he said, before turning his focus to his Mongolian opponent "I hope you have a pocket pair, sir."

It was easy to see why he said this as he opened K♦K♥. The much quieter Tserendorj showed T♠T♥ and the board ran 9♥5♦7♠7♥Q♥.

7.36pm: "I'm all-in"
The familiar cry heard just now, seconds after play resumed. We're into level six now with blinds of 300-600 with a 50 ante.

7pm: Hold everything
In a change to the advertised programme players are now taking a thirty minute dinner break before returning to play two more levels tonight. Play resumes with level six at 7.30pm.

6.55pm: Greenstein in action
Barry Greenstein burst into life to play a pot, raising in the small blind to 2,700. Anatacio Custodio called. Dongmin Lee was in the pot but got out quickly. Mike Kim did the same after closing his eyes and titling his head back for a few seconds.

The flop came 2♥8♥7♣. Greenstein fired out a quick 3,500 which Custodio called. they both checked the 7♠ turn and did the same for the 8♦ river. A♥J♣ for Greenstein, chopped with Custodio who showed A♦Q♥.

6.50pm: Kim in control
Nikica Maric opened for 400 from under the gun. Dongmin Lee raised to 1,000 which Mike Kim called after some thought. Maric also called. The flop came 6♥A♠8♥. All three players checked for a 8♦ turn card. Kim threw out 5,000 which was, again, good for the pot.

6.45pm: Loke toked
Beng Hwa Loke is the latest faller, his ace king topped by king-four when a second four hit the turn.

6.40pm: Table etiquette still tip-top
Edgardo Lopez limped in from first position before a player two seats along raised up to 2,700. Mark Kohner Jr decided to get involved and put in another raise to 8,700. Both players called to create a big pot going to the A♥A♠6♥ flop. Lopez was first act and moved all in for 13,350. One fold came quickly but Kohner Jr took his time over his decision. While he was thinking a player not involved started talking about what Lopez could have. "Full-house or maybe a flush draw" was just one of the lines he uttered.

No one made a complaint and after a minute or so Kohner Jr folded leaving himself with 20,000. Lopez up to around 40,000.

6.25pm: Gonna find those aces, gonna hold them tight/Gonna grab some afternoon delight
Ron Regis' stack is up to 61,000 after finding pocket aces and getting paid with them. He opened the pot with a raise up to 1,100 and was flat called (ace-queen he later said) by a player in the next seat before Mark Lester Dioso moved all in for around 8,000. Regis moved all in too and forced the third party involved to fold. Regis opened A♠A♥ and Dioso opened J♣J♦ before the board ran Q♦A♣7♣7♥8♥ to see the pocket rockets hold.

6.10pm: Great Scott
Just before the break Andrew Scott managed to double-up to nearly 50,000 through the very vocal and now familiar Don Carmona.

These two, plus two other players, saw a A♣8♣6♣ flop. Carmona was under-the-gun and led out for 800 and was raised up to 1,700 by Scott. The other two players folded but Carmona made the call to see the T♠ turn.

Carmona then check-raised Scott's 4,000 bet up to 10,000. Dialogue then ensued between the two that ended in Scott announcing a call. Carmona then moved all-in on the J♠ river and was snap-called by Scott who tabled Q♣T♣.

"Have you got a king high flush? No you haven't. Ship-it," came out of Scott's mouth in under two seconds.

Carmona tabled K♠Q♦ for a river straight but it couldn't beat the Aussie's flush.

6.05pm: Break's over
Players are on their way back. Play resumes with blinds at 200-400 with a 50.

Barry Greenstein before the start of play today

PokerStars Blog reporting team in Manila: Stephen Bartley and Marc Convey.