2014 ACOP Super High Roller: Day 1 updates
2:40am: Day 1 over with Joseph Cheong leading
Each table has just played two more hands and with that, Day 1 of the ACOP HK$500,000 Super High Roller is over.
Joseph Cheong is very likely the leader with what looks like the only stack over 3 million. One of the main threats to Cheong seems to be Tobias Reinkemeier. The unconfirmed number of survivors is 46.
Regardless, there will be a full recap of the day's action, all the end-of-day chip counts, the prize pool information and the all-important Day 2 table draw posted here on the PokerStarsBlog as soon as possible.
2:20am: Prize Pool confirmation
It has been confirmed that 52 entrants and 50 rebuys has created a prize pool of HK$48,470,400. The full payout breakdown will be posted here at the PokerStarsBlog as soon as possible. For now, we can tell you that the top eight will be making the money.
2:15am: Four threes, one gone and a chip leader
Joseph Cheong is the chip leader midway through the last level of Day 1 of the ACPOP Super High Roller. He has around 2.7 million in chips.
We didn't catch the action of a big hand that saw Cheong win a large portion of those chips, but we did see Olivier Busquet leaving the table after being all in and watching Cheong flip over Q♥3♥ on a J♦K♣3♣3♦3♠ board. Apparently Busquet was the aggressor throughout the hand and not surprisingly, couldn't beat the four threes of Cheong.
2:10am: Kho wins race to stay alive
With the re-buy period officially over, when players bust now it's for real, something which can only add more pressure to the decision making process.
Over on the feature table one of our bigger stacks, Guanfei Zhu, opened the action with a raise to 30,000. Gilles Morihain made the call on the button and then a decidedly short Kitson Kho then moved all-in from the big blind for 161,000.
Sitting on just shy of the 2 million mark Zhu decided to make the call and after Morihain bowed out the cards were on their backs and it was left to fate to decide Kho's fate, with his 6♣6♠ racing against Zhu's Q♥T♠.
The board ran out A♠9♣9♦2♦5♣ to keep Kho in contention and he climbed to 350,000.
Zhu is still one of the bigger stacks however, sitting on 1.8 million or so.
2:00am: Battle of the Ikes
Both of the Super High Roller's competing Isaacs - Baron and Haxton - are sitting over on Table 19, with Winfred Yu sandwiched between the pair.
Sitting under-the-gun in this particular hand with a stack of 1.1 million Isaac Haxton made it 36,000 to go with action folding around to Isaac Baron in the small blind. Baron made the call and after the action went heads-up to a flop of Q♣5♦5♠.
Baron quickly checked and after a slightly longer pause so did Haxton and so the dealer burned and turned the T♦. This brought a bet of 45,000 from Baron and pursed lips and a thoughtful expression from Haxton, though he did eventually make the call.
The A♦ river seemed to be a card neither player liked with Baron checking pretty quickly. Haxton mulled it over but eventually checked behind and saved himself a few chips as Baron rolled over T♥T♠ for a turned set.
Haxton is sitting on over a million while Baron has around 850,000. BW
1:50am: Final level update from the feature table
There are plenty of big names on the feature table that is being filmed on the other side of the casino floor.
Unfortunately there is no live stream folks, just a post-production program for 'Macau Billionaire Poker', which is the team that is running the event in conjunction with PokerStars LIVE Macau. Luckily we can at least fill you in on how some of the players are faring over there.
Phil Ivey is over on that table and currently has around 1.1 million in chips.
Ryan Fee is looking like one of the overall chip leaders with 2 million, while Guanfei Zhu has about 1.9 million. Team PokerStars Pro Jonathan Duhamel is also at the table with around 750,000. The UK's Toby Lewis has around 550,00.
1:40am: Last level kicks off, money in the pool
As expected, the rebuy frenzy on the break meant a delayed start to the final level of the night. However, the cards are now in the air and that means there are 60 minutes remaining on Day 1 of the HK$500,000 Super High Roller.
We are awaiting final confirmation of the prize pool information, but at this stage it looks like 52 unique entrants and 50 rebuys. That means there should be somewhere near HK$50 million up for grabs. That's around US$6.5 million.
1:20am: Final break and rebuy period over
The players have just been sent on their final break of the night.
This break is the last chance for players to rebuy and it looks like plenty of players will be taking one, if not two, of their rebuys.
Play is scheduled to kick back off in 10 minutes, but with plenty of players lining up to rebuy, it might take a little longer than that.
1:15am: Quoss calls for victory, Gruissem on third bullet
Table 25 is looking distinctly Germanic now with Fabian Quoss, Tobias Reinkemeier and Philipp Gruissem all sitting together. That is the third and final bullet for Gruissem and if he can't get it done with this one it's all over.
Gruissem had just taken his new seat when the following hand developed between Quoss and Dan Smith. Sitting in the cut off with 269,000 Quoss opened to 28,000, Smith made the call from the small blind and Tobias Reinkemeier folded in the big blind.
Both Smith and Quoss checked the Q♥9♦8♠ flop, with Smith opting to take the initiative on the 5♠ turn with a bet of 33,000. Quoss took his time before electing to make the call and dealer peeled the 4♠ river.
Now sitting in the driver's seat, Smith fired out a bet of 85,000 prompting Quoss to shoot a wry grin Smith's way before tugging on his own beard with a very thoughtful look on his face.
Quoss looked torn between calling and folding with the former option eventually winning out.
"Good call," said Smith, turning over K♠J♣.
Quoss turned over Q♦J♠ to climb back up to just over 400,000 after the hand BW
1:10am: Time for Kurganov to rebuy after brutal bust out
More and more rebuys are happening as we get closer and closer to the end of the rebuy period.
One of those to recently dish up another HK$500,000 was Igor Kurganov.
Kurganov used his rebuy when he was eliminated at the hands of Italian Mustapha Kanit on a J♣6♠9♠T♣9♣ board. Kurganov had led on the turn and Kanit raised. Kurganov called and then on the river, Kurganov check-called an all-in bet from Kanit to put himself at risk.
Kurganov's pocket sixes were good for a full house.
But Kanit had K♣Q♣ for a straight flush.
Kanit is now up to 1.6 million.
Kurganov, meanwhile, is starting at a new table. JB
1:05am: Peters Doubles
An interesting hand has just played out over on Table 23 which we feel compelled to tell you about.
Belgium's Davidi Kitai lit the blue touch paper with an open raise to 24,000 from the lo-jack, the USA's David Peters smooth called from the hi-jack and Geoff Mooney came along for the ride from the button before Russia's Vladamir Troyanovskiy decided to spoil everyone's party by squeezing to 86,000 from the big blind.
Kitai quickly bowed out but David Peters had other ideas, moving all-in for 335,000 in total. Mooney quickly folded the button and Troyanovskiy had a big decision on his hands.
Troyanovskiy eventually elected to call but his A♥J♣ was trailing Peters' K♦K♥ and stayed in second place when the board ran out 8♦[10c]5♠8♠3♦.
Peters doubled to just under 700,000 after that spot of good fortune while Troyanovskiy dropped to just over 400,000. BW
1:00am: Drinan finds a double
Connor Drinan was happy to get his stack of 282,000 into the middle preflop with K♠K♥ and Pete Chen seemed just as happy to call it off with A♠K♣.
The board was good for Drinan and he took the double not too long before the end of the registration / rebuy period.
12:45am: Roberts reaches for another rebuy
Brian Roberts has just used his second, and final, rebuy of the night.
Roberts's recent elimination began when he opened to 28,000. There were two callers, before Jeff Rossiter squeezed the big blind. Roberts quickly moved all in, the other two players got out of the way, Rossiter snap-called and it was his pocket kings against Roberts' ace-king.
The board was no help to Roberts and so it was time to get out another HK$500,000.
There have now been over 20 rebuys for the night.
We will have full confirmation of the rebuys, and total unique entrants, at the end of the current level. JB
12:25am: Some of the big stacks during penultimate level
The second-to-last level of the night has just begun. It's also the last level that registration is open and the last level for players to use their rebuys.
Here are some of the recent stacks of the chip leaders
David Yan - 1.7 million
Tobias Reinkemeier - 1.7 million
Joseph Cheong - 1.5 million
12:15am: Level 6 Begins, Blinds 5,000/10,000 (1,000)
12:05am: Feature table fun
Over on the current 'feature' table Germany's Philipp Gruissem opted for a re-buy and is now sitting with 500,000 again. It appears that Phil Ivey was the beneficiary as he is sitting on a stack of 1.5 million.
Gruissem won a little of that back on the subsequent hand, betting 30,000 into a 50,000-chip pot on the turn on a A♦9♦4♠T♠ board. Ivey quickly folded and the pot was shipped Gruissem's way to bring the German player up to 550,000.
Gruissem gave some of this away the next hand however, opening to 20,000 from middle position and finding a caller in the form of Jonathan Duhamel in the big blind.
It was only 20,000 plus his 1,000 ante that Gruissem lost in this particular instance when the flop came down 5♦T♣9♥ and action checked all the way through the J♦ turn to the A♣ river meaning Duhamel's two pair A♠5♣ was enough to win the pot and bring the Canadian up to 350,000 in chips.
France's Gilles Morihain and Phil Ivey had the pleasure of playing the last hand of the level on the feature table in a blind on blind battle that saw Morihain get three streets of value for his hand.
Pre-flop, Morihain completed the small blind and Ivey checked his option with both players seeing the 7♣4♠2♠ flop. First to act, Morihain led out for 10,000 with Ivey quickly making the call.
Morihain fired a second barrel of 23,000 on the 8♦ turn, which Ivey called, though it took him slightly longer to think about it.
The [10d] river brought a third barrel from Morihain, who led out for 80,000. This prompted Ivey to shoot the Frenchman 'the look' and he took a great deal of time mulling over his options.
At one point it looked like Ivey might re-raise, but eventually he just called, pitching his cards into the muck when Morihain turned over 8♠7♦ for two pair. That took Morihain up over the 700,000 mark and saw Ivey drop down to 1.35 million at the close of the level. BW
12:00am: Ivan makes big call against Igor
There was already a big pot out on the felt when we arrived to find Igor Kurganov and Ivan Soshnikov on the river of a Q♣3♠T♦5♠7♣ board. Soshnikov was first to act and he opted to check it over to Kurganov. After some thought, Kurganov led out for 175,000 which sent Soshnikov into the tank. That bet was around half of Soshnikov's stack.
Eventually Soshnikov opted to call and Kurganov revealed A♠4♠ for just ace-high.
Shoshnikov also had ace-high, but his A♦K♣ was strong enough to win the pot.
Despite losing this pot, Kurganov still has around 1 million in chips. JB
11:45pm: Rossiter moves all in, gets fold
We recently picked up the action on a 8♠2♣4♦ flop with Jeff Rossiter leading out for
80,000 from the big blind position. Rossiter's lone opponent, Winfred Yu, raised it up to 185,000 from the cut off and it was back on Rossiter.
After a few moments, Rossiter moved all in for 495,000 and Yu went deep into the tank.
Yu had what looked like a little less than Rossiter behind and eventually opted to let his cards go, sending the chips to the Australian. JB
11:30pm: Baron and Katchalov climbing
There have been 52 entries, 51 of whom are still in contention with the possibility that the 52nd, Byron Kaverman, may still opt to re-buy before the end of level 6. Add in 17 re-buys and the prize pool is currently sitting at more than HK$30,000,000.
Level 5 is so fresh you can still smell what some of the players had for dinner on their breath. While a big meal can sometimes make you feel sleepy it has had no effect on the action with players getting right back into the thick of it with several sizable pots developing.
The first involved USA's Isaac Baron and Bulgaria's Dimitar Danchev, with the latter opening the action from late position to 20,000.
Baron opted to re-raise from the small blind, making it 54,000 in total with Danchev thinking it over briefly before making the call bringing us heads-up to a flop of 7♥7♣5♥.
Continuing the aggression Baron led out for 48,000 with Danchev again taking his time to think things through before calling. The 3♦ turn brought a fairly chunky 125,000 second barrel from Baron, who left himself another 350,000 behind. Danchev took a little longer thinking about this but did call, swelling the pot to over 450,000.
The K♥ river brought checks from both players, with Baron turning over Q♦Q♠ to win the hand, taking his stack over the 800,000 mark.
Team PokerStars Pro Eugene Katchalov and Ivan Soshnikov were the two protagonists in the second hand, Katchalov defending his small blind with Q♠J♥ against a mid-position Soshnikov raise.
Katchalov jammed the J♠T♠J♣ flop, betting his last 146,000 with Soshnikov making the call with K♣Q♠. The turn and river ran out 2♦8♣ respectively to see Katchalov double to just over 300,000 while Soshnikov dropped to 325,000 after the hand.BW
11:20pm: Update from the feature table
Here is an update from the "feature table", which is being filmed by the team at Macau Billionaire Poker.
Phil Ivey, Toby Lewis and Jonathan Duhamel are at the table, though all look to be on just over or under the starting stack with Duhamel being the shortest on 450,000.
China's Guanfei Zhu has had his first re-buy despite not being that far off starting stack so is now on just under 1 million in chips.BW
11:15pm: Dinner over, cards flying for three more
The players are back from their dinner break and the cards are once again in the air.
Blinds are now 4,000/8,000 with a 1,000 ante.
Seven levels will be played tonight, which means three more.
10:25pm: Time for dinner
The players have been sent on a 45-minute dinner break.
Registration is open for two more levels and there are three levels remaining in the day.
Play will kick back off at around 11:10pm local time.
10:20pm: Stacks and Facts
At the moment it is China's Yu Liang sitting over on table 23 who is leading the charge with what looks to be a stack of 1.3 million.
Germany's Tobias Reinkemeier seems a close second with 1.2 million.
Table 23 is looking like where all the big stacks are at present with New Zealand's David Yan sitting on around 1.15 million aand Australia's Geoff Mooney and Russia's Vladimir Troyanovskiy both with just over 1 million.
Canada's Leo Cheng has 950,000 or so and Bulgaria's Dimitar Danchev has 900,000 after rivering a full house holding 6♦6♣ just before the break, winning a big pot from Connor Drinan, who dropped to 150,000 after the hand.
The USA's Carlos Chadha has just over 800,000 and the UK's Mustapha Kanit is another sizable stack with just over 750,000.
Brian Roberts is on his second re-buy, as is Belgium's Davidi Kitai who plumped for his
second bullet right at the end of level 4. Ryan Fee, meanwhile is up over seven figures.
Phil Ivey, Toby Lewis and Jonathan Duhamel are all still in contention and will be on the feature table when play resumes.BW
10:10pm: Three more rebuys
There have been three more rebuys.
After a short break from play, the recently eliminated Brian Roberts ponied up another HK$500,000 to get back into the game, while Thomas Muehloecker and Shichun Wu also opted to rebuy.
That makes it 11 rebuys total so far today and there are two more levels remaining in the rebuy period. Late registration is also open during this time.
10:00pm: Ryan takes fee from Roberts
Ryan Fee and Brian Roberts have been playing quite a few pots together since the last level with the action finally reaching a crescendo.
We missed the pre-flop action, but according to Toby Lewis it was a three-bet pot, with Roberts the aggressor in the small blind and Fee making the pre-flop call in late position.
The K♦J♦Q♠ flop brought a check-call from Roberts after Fee fired, with the action following in the same vein on the 5♥ turn.
Roberts checked for a third time on the 2♣ river and with over 350,000 in the middle the pot was a sizable one. Fee had around the same in his stack and announced 'all-in' prompting Roberts to hit the think-tank hard - if he made the call and lost it would be re-buy time.
Despite staring over at Fee long and hard it did not look like he was giving much away and after some deliberation Roberts did make the call.
Fee flipped over 5♣5♦ for a turned set and Roberts mucked his hand and headed for the rail for a brief respite. He still has untill the end of level 6 to choose to re-buy, though if he is away from the table for more than 15 minutes he will get a random new seat draw. BW
9:40pm: Yu Liang's stack is ever-growing
Yu Liang was the first player to be eliminated on Day 1 of the 2014 ACOP High Roller. He is also the only player to have utilised both his available rebuys.
He may have HK$1.5 million invested in the prize pool so far, but he is also the chip leader.
We recently watched Liang scoop a pot off David Peters.
We picked up the action on the river of a 8♠2♥8♥4♥5♦ board, with around 500,000 already in the pot. Liang checked to Peters, who was on the button on Liang's direct right. Peters didn't take long before bet 335,000 and Liang made a fairly quick call.
Peters tabled A♥9♣ for just ace high.
It took Liang a long time to realise what Peters' had.
Then Liang turn over A♦A♣ for somewhat of a slow roll, leaving Peters with around 450,000 behind and seeing his own stack more to around 1.5 million. JB
9:20pm: Level 4 Begins, Blinds 3,000/6,000, Ante 500
9:15pm: Fee picks off Roberts' bluff, Lewis squeeze ends level
We caught the action on the river over on table 22 in a hand between Ryan Fee and Brian Roberts.
With the board reading 5♥J♥6♣Q♥2♣ Roberts led out for a bet of 45,000 into a 60,000 or so chip pot.
Fee mulled it over for a minute or so before making the call. Roberts rolled over K♥T♣ for King-high, which was not enough to beat Fee's A♦5♠.
The very next hand China's Guanfei Zhu opened the action to 10,000 from late position with Roberts again making the call from the blinds.
One player who we noticed was paying close attention to that last hand is another late entry, the UK's Toby Lewis, who also made the call from the big blind.
Both Roberts and Lewis check the 8♠2♥2♦ flop and Zhu continuation bet 20,000. Roberts made the call only to see Lewis sit for a minute before reaching for chips and raising to 60,000 in total.
Zhu quickly mucked his hand and after thinking it over so did Roberts, leaving Lewis to pull in 70,000 or so extra chips without showdown. BW
9:05pm: Three more rebuys
There have been three more rebuys, brining the total to eight.
Isaac Haxton, Jason Mo and Igor Kurganov were the three to dish up HK$500,000 and rebuy.
Remember, players are allowed two rebuys each, and they can be taken at any point during the first six levels, no matter how small, large or non-existent a player's stack is.JB
9:00pm: Some of the big stacks
Still looks like 51 entrants so far on Day 1 of the 2014 ACOP Super High Roller.
Here are some of the big stacks during the third level of play.
David Yan - 900,000
Yu Liang - 850,000
Guanfei Zhu - 800,000
Igor Kurganov - 800,000
Pratyush Buddiga - 775,000
8:55pm: Cheng catches Katchalov
Things are not going too well for Team PokerStars Pro Eugene Katchalov at present. Following a raise to 10,000 from Canada's Leo Cheng in the hi-jack both Katchalov and fellow PokerStars pro Isaac Haxton called from the small and big blind respectively.
All three players checked the monotone 4♥6♥7♥ flop meaning we went three-way to the 9♦ turn. Both Katchalov and Haxton checked again and Cheng decided to take a stab for 25,000.
Katchalov then check-raised to 60,000. While this was enough to get Haxton to bow out it was not enough to deter Cheng who made the call, taking us heads-up to the 7♣ river.
Katchalov led for 90,000 into the 155,000 pot prompting Cheng to hit the think tank, though he did eventually make the call. Katchalov turned over pocket jacks, but it was not enough to beat Cheng, who had rivered a full house holding 4♣4♠.
Katchalov dropped down to 300,000 after the hand while Cheng climbed to just over 800,000. BW
8:50pm: Pratyush building a big stack
Pratyush Buddiga is starting to build quite a large stack during the third level of the day.
Buddiga recently scooped up a hefty pot in a hand against Mustapha Kanit. We picked up the action on the river of a K♣8♥9♣7♥3♠ board and with Kanit checking to Buddiga. After a few moments, Buddiga bet 130,000 and Kanit went into the tank.
Eventually a fold was made and the pot went to Buddiga.
He's up to 800,000 and looking comfortable. JB
8:40pm: German poker psychology explained
Despite the hefty HK$500,000 buy-in several of the players seem very relaxed and upbeat. Table 25 is the chattiest of our seven tables with Sorrel Mizzi leading the banter, though tablemates Fabian Quoss, Tobian Reinkemeier, Bryn Kenney and Dan Smith are all joining in.
Sitting under-the-gun, Fabian Quoss mucked preflop, accidently flipping over A♣8♥; "Insert tight player joke here" quipped Sorrel Mizzi as Bryn Kenney made it 11,000 to go from under the gun plus one.
Tobias Reinkemeirer was Kenney's only customer, quietly sliding the call into the centre of the table from middle position. Kenney checked the 3♠9♠2♠ flop and Reinkemeirer took the initiative with a bet of 15,000. Kenney looked over at his opponent hoping to get something but Reinkemeirer was giving nothing away, leaving Kenney to sigh heavily and fold.
"There's no emotion from the Germans," Mizzi added jokingly as the pot was shipped Reinkemeirer's way.
"No, it's controlled emotion from the Germans," replied a deadpan Fabian Quoss before giving Mizzi a wry grin.
Quoss is all business again as soon as the cards are in the air, re-raising a Carlos Chadha button raise.
Chadha made it 9,000 to go with Quoss re-raising to 30,000 in total.
Chadha made the call and both players went heads up to a flop of 4♣A♣7♥. Quoss mulled it over before checking and Chadha checked behind and the dealer burned and turned the J♥.
This brought another check from Quoss and a bet of 35,000 from Chadha, which was enough to take down the pot. BW
8:35pm: Change of plans
There has been a change of plans here on Day 1 of the ACOP Super High Roller.
Instead of playing eight levels there will now be seven levels. The dinner break has also been increased to 45 minutes. That will see the night ending at around 2:15 a.m. local time. JB
8:25pm: Faraway feature table
There is now a "feature" table running outside of the PokerStars LIVE Macau poker room.
The Macau Billionaire Poker (MBP) team who are running the event in conjunction with PokerStars LIVE Macau are filming the table for the MBP website.
We have somewhat limited access, but we can tell you that Joseph Cheong, Olivier Busquet, Max Altergott, Stanley Choi and Dan Colman are at the felt. JB
8:20pm: Break over, cards flying again
The players are back from their break and the cards are back in the air.
This is the third level of the day. Blinds are now 2,000/4,000 with a 500 ante.
The next break will be a 30-minute dinner break. JB
8:10pm: First break of the night
The players have been sent on their first 10-minute break of the day.
8:00pm: Early rebuy information
There have been five rebuys so far late into the second level of the day.
Two of those were done by Yu Liang. He was also the only player to use at least one of his rebuys after being eliminated. The other rebuys were taken up by Mike McDonald, David Yan and Joseph Cheong, all of whom simply topped their stack up.
Remember, registration, and the rebuy period, is open for the first six levels.
Total entrants is still at 51. JB
7:50pm: Ivey caught bluffing, Gruissem caught with the goods
While he has built up a sizable stack quite stealthily so far things are not going all Mr. Phil Ivey's way.
We caught the action of a recent hand on the turn of a board reading: 7♦8♣J♠T♦.
With around 18000 in the pot it looked like the action might have checked around on the flop and Ivey opened from the small blind for 10,000. His opponent, China's Guanfei Zhu made the call and the dealer peeled the 5♥ river. This brought another bet from Ivey, this time for a slightly larger 26,000, which was quickly called by Zhu. Ivey snap mucked and Zhu turned over A♥J♣ for top pair.
In contrast, Ivey's tablemate Philpp Gruissem took up the very next hand against Ryan Fee, with very different results.
Sitting in middle position Gruissem made it 7,000 to go and Fee looked him up from the big blind.
Fee checked the 3♠5♠4♥ flop allowing Gruissem to make a continuation bet of 9000, which Fee called fairly quickly.
The Q♥ turn brought another check from Fee and a slightly larger double barrel of 26,000 from Gruissem. While Fee took slightly longer he made the call and both players saw the Q♣ river.
Fee checked for a third time and after thinking it over so did Gruissem. Fee turned over A♥7♦ but it wasn't enough to beat Gruissem's pocket Eights and so the German pro dragged in the pot.BW
7:45pm: Mooney takes one from Timex
Midway through level 2 the only difference in the blinds has been the addition of a 500 ante. So far there are 51 confirmed entrants. If this is a sign of things to come then the action is going to come to the boil well before the rebuy period finishes at the end of level 6.
One player who may not need a rebuy just yet is Geoff Mooney, who has just taken down a decent sizable pot at the expense of Mike 'Timex' McDonald.
We missed the pre-flop action but there has definitely been some as there looked to be around 60,000 in the middle in a blind on blind confrontation with Mooney in the small blind and McDonald in the big blind.
We're not sure who the initial aggressor was but Mooney checked the 4♠5♦K♦ flop and McDonald led out for 55,000, which Mooney called after some careful contemplation.
The 7♦ turn brought about a possible diamond flush and while Mooney checked again McDonald did not seem too thrilled about it and checked behind.
The 6♣ river saw Mooney reach for chips and he bet a hefty pot sized 125,000. Sitting right next to each other McDonald had ample opportunity to eyeball Mooney before reaching for chips, counting them out, kind of faking a call and getting nothing for his troubles. McDonald did eventually call however, only to see Mooney roll over A♦T♦ for the nut flush to rake in the pot. BW
7:25pm: Ivey building early, while Duhamel falls
Phil Ivey is already sitting behind a stack of more than 700,000.
The most recent chips to join Ivey's stack came during a hand with Team PokerStars Pro Jonathan Duhamel.
We picked up the action on the 7♦6♠3♥ flop with Ivey checking to Duhamel, who bet 35,000. Ivey made a fairly quick call and a 6♦ was flipped over on the turn. Ivey once again checked here and this time Duhamel bet 65,000. Ivey gestured for Duhamel to move his hand and saw that Duhamel had around 375,000 behind. Then he called.
When the board completed with a Q♣, both players checked and Ivey flipped over his T♠T♣ - enough to take the pot down. JB
7:10pm: Level 2 Begins, Blinds 1,500/3,000, Ante 500
6:50pm: Colman cometh to wreak more High Roller havoc
Dan Colman has just taken his seat in the 2014 ACOP Super High Roller.
If you aren't up to speed on the happenings of the poker world over the last several months, Mr. Colman is a player who has gone on of the sickest tournament runs in poker history.
Colman most recently won the €60,000 WPT Alpha8 event for €600,000 and prior to that won the $5,300 Seminole Hard Rock Poker Open for US$1.446 million, finished 2nd in the €50,000 EPT Barcelona Super High Roller for €843,066, 3rd in the $100,000 Aria Super High Roller for US$796,821 and also won a little tournament called the Big One for One Drop for more than US$15 million.
He has won more than US$22 million in 2014 alone and if he continues his run here in Macau could add another six or seven figures to the tally. JB
6:45pm: Developing rivalry
Steve O'Dwyer and Pratyush Buddiga have seemed to tangle quite a bit over the last 40 minutes as players seek to assert dominance over their respective table fiefdoms.
While Buddiga has been one of the more active players out of the starting blocks on the rare occasions he has made it to showdown he has turned over some strong hands - Ace-Queen on a Queen-high board for example.
With O'Dwyer in the blinds when Buddiga is in late position we expect the two will probably be clashing a lot as the tournament progresses.
Buddiga has taken down the last few hands against O'Dwyer without showdown and is now sitting in front of the beginnings of a sizable stack, with two large towers of 1,000 and 5,000 chips in front of him in addition to quite a few 25,000 chips.
However, Buddiga is not having everything go his way and O'Dwyer has just taken down a sizable pot from his nemesis. We caught the action on the turn with around 90,000 in the pot and the board reading T♥6♥5♣A♦.
Las Vegas-based O'Dwyer was in position in this particular instance and, following a check from Buddiga, fired out a half-pot bet of 45,000, which Buddiga called.
The 3♦ river brought another check from Buddiga and another half-pot bet from O'Dwyer, this time for a larger 90,000. Buddiga made the fold and O'Dwyer happily took some of his chips back. BW
6:40pm: More familiar faces early on Day 1
More players have taken their sears as we near the halfway mark of the first level of the day. Players like Peter Chen, Bryn Kenney, Mike McDonald, Tobias Reinkemeier, Dan Smith, Team PokerStars Pro Eugene Katchalov, David Yan, Igor Kurganov and Bryn Kenney are some of those spotted amongst the tables.
Another player to recently take his seat was Phil Ivey and the first hand he was dealt, he scooped up some chips. Ivey was in the under-the-gun seat and opened it up to 7,000. Team PokerStars Pro Jonathan Duhamel called a couple of spots to Ivey's left, along with the button and the big blind. Ivey then took it down with a continuation-bet on the 2♥5♠2♣ flop.
There are currently around 40 entrants and 35 of them have taken their seats. JB
6:35pm: Players On The Move
The landscape is in a constant state of flux at present with players being moved to account for all the new arrivals. In addition to Phil Ivey and Ike Haxton joining during the level we have had several other slightly late arrivals including Sorrel Mizzi, Joseph Cheong, Aaron Lim Stanley Choi and Peter Chan.
Chan wasted no time getting into the action recently playing a hand that began when he 8,000 to go from the hi-jack. He received calls from Julius Colman in the small blind and with the big blind also coming along for the ride.
Both blinds checked the 6♦3♥T♥ flop and Chan threw out a continuation bet of 11,000. Colman was the only interested party and he duly made the call while the big blind got out of the way taking the action heads-up to the T♣ turn.
This brought a check from both players and when the 8♦ hit the river, Colman took the opportunity to seize the initiative and opened for a bet of 16,000 into the 46,000-chip pot. Chan mulled it over and made the call, but mucked when Colman flipped over two black Nines. BW
6:20pm Stage Is set
We've got a couple of interesting table line-ups developing, but expect these to change as more players come in late.
One of the more interesting looking tables so far has Australia's Jeff Rossiter, Steve O'Dwyer and a particularly active Pratyush Buddiga all butting heads with Buddiga taking down quite a few early pots in position.
In one particular hand O'Dwyer opted to play sheriff defending his big blind to yet another Buddiga late position raise to 7,000 (blinds started at 1500/3000). With that, it was heads-up to a flop of A♣Q♠6♦.
Both players checked the flop and the 6♣ turn. Then, on the 4♥ river, O'Dwyer checked again and a 10,000 bet from Buddiga was enough to scoop another early pot to pad out his stack.
Team PokerStars Pro Online Isaac Haxton has also just taken his seat on this particular table so the dynamics may well change going forward.
Over on another table Team PokerStars Pro Jonathan Duhamel is testing the waters along with Brian Roberts and Isaac Baron. It is the latter who kickstarted the action recently with a button raise to 7,000 before Duhamel re-raised it to 25,000 in total from the small blind. Roberts, sitting in the big blind, and Baron made the call.
Duhamel checked the 4♠2♦9♥ flop opening the door for Roberts to fire out a 17,000 bet. Baron folded and after a bit of deliberation so did Duhamel and so the pot went to Roberts. BW
6:10pm: Cards flying on Day 1 of the Super High Roller
The cards are in the air!
There are 35 players already registered for the event, but only 16 at the tables to begin play. Some of those already seated include Team PokerStars Pro Jonathan Duhamel, Steve O'Dwyer, Isaac Baron, Brian Roberts and Philipp Gruissem.
Every minute or two another player seems to arrive, so expect the seats to start filling up very shortly. JB
6:05pm: Not like a Super High Roller to start on time
Looks like we are running a few minutes behind schedule.
We will be sure to let you know when the cards are in the air.
In the meantime, here is some information you might like to know.
Players start with 500,000 in chips and blinds kick off at 1,500/3,000. Level 2 will also be 1,500/3,000 but there will be 500 ante at this point.
Day 1 will last eight 60-minute levels with breaks after every two levels. That means Day 1 will finish up at around 2:45 a.m. or thereabouts.
Registration is open for the first six levels and as previously mentioned, players are allowed two rebuys at any time. Interestingly, if eliminated, these rebuys are allowed to be made at the table immediately, or you can leave the table and rebuy at a time of your discretion and be reallocated a seat. JB
Time for the HK$500,000 Super High Roller
The 2014 Asia Championship of Poker kicked off eight days ago, but tonight is when the action really picks up as the Macau Billionaire Poker HK$500,000 Super High Roller begins.
For those not from this neck of the woods that buy-in is equivalent to roughly US$65,000. Throw in the fact that each player is allowed two rebuys and we have ourselves one very large tournament.
Around half an hour prior to the beginning of the tournament there are around 30 players already registered. Some of the names you might recognise include Australia's Jeff Rossiter, the German roster of high rollers Fabian Quoss, Tobias Reinkemeier, Philipp Gruissem and Igor Kurganov, US pros Brian Roberts, Isaac Baron and Team PokerStars Pro Online Isaac Haxton.
Oh, and a player by the name Phil Ivey.
The cards will be in the air from 6:00 p.m. local time (3:00 am PDT) and right here on the PokerStarsBlog will be the best place to get updates from Day 1 of the tournament. Then you can return tomorrow and Monday and find out who wins the title and a hell of a lot of money.
Updates on this page provided by Joshua Bell and Ben Wilson