Aussie Millions 2016: Day 1c Live Updates

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1:40am: That's a wrap!

Day 1c of the Main Event has come to an end as the players bag up their chips and head off to enjoy some much-needed rest. We'll have confirmation of chip counts and a wrap of today's play for you shortly.

Day 2 will recommence at 12:30pm local time on Wednesday and we look forward to you company then!

1:30am: Five more hands
Level 6: Blinds 250/500 (75)

Players have been informed that only five hands remain on Day 1c.

1:25am: Slow going
Level 6: Blinds 250/500 (75)

Just as we've seen over the previous flights, the action has really slowed down late in the evening. 7 levels of play across 13 hours of play really is a long day and fatigue has started to set it as we approach the finish line for the day.

It looks like we'll have around 200 survivors from today's field of 337, with James Broom and Dietrich Fast contending for the end-of-day chip lead.

1:10am: Time called; Jacobson takes a hit
Level 6: Blinds 250/500 (75)

Four players saw a flop of K♦7♦A♠ and it checked to John Chu who bet 4,500. Martin Jacobson next to act made the call and it folded to a player who had only 15,300 behind.

It was time for another epic tank as the player weighed up his options. Mid-tank he called over a nearby friend and showed his hand only to receive instant chastising from both his tablemates and the dealer.

After a few minutes Tom Hall apologized and called time as it was close to the end of the night. The player told him not to worry and with 90 seconds left to deliberate the player threw his hand away.

With two left in the hand the 8♦ appeared on the turn. Chu checked this time and it was Jacobson who made a bet of 10,000. Chu called and the 6♥ river rolled off.

Mixing up his play Chu then led for 10,000, a bet that was called before long by Jacobson. Chu tabled A♦6♦ for the turned nut flush and Jacobson nodded as a portion of his stack was shipped to his competitor.

12:50am: Dawley chops one
Level 7: Blinds 300/600 (100)

Picking up the action on a flop of 8♠6♠T♥, Jessica Dawley tossed out a bet of 3,600 from the small blind. Her opponent in late position made the call and the turn was the 4♦.

Dawley didn't slow down, betting 7,800. Once again her opponent made the call as the 9♦ completed a dangerous board.

Dawley checked and her opponent gave it some thought before also checking behind. Neither was too thrilled to show their cards but both were somewhat relieved to eventually show the same hand - Dawley with her A♣J♥ and her opponent A♠J♠.

"Maybe that river was a bad card for me!" sighed Dawley as she pondered the opportunity to have triple-barrelled. She's looking good for a Day 2 berth with a stack of 48,000.

jessica-dawley-aussie-millions.jpg

12:30am: Broom beats Blatt
Level 7: Blinds 300/600 (100)

We have a new chip leader on Day 1c of the Main Event after a brutal bad beat was inflicted on Dean Blatt.

The man who did the damage was none other than James Broom. According to Blatt, he'd got away with a cheeky six-bet on Broom a little earlier in the day, so when the two collided again, Blatt was pretty happy to get action holding pocket aces. Broom held pocket kings and wasn't going anywhere and when a third king appeared on board, Broom had landed a massive double up.

Broom is up to 150,000 in chips with Blatt reeling but still alive with around 20,000.

12:10am: Play resumes
Level 7: Blinds 300/600 (100)


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11:55pm: Final break of the day

The players are now taking their last break of the day. One more 90-minute level and our day is done.

11:45pm: Lim lands miracle to survive
Level 6: Blinds 250/500 (75)

Aaron Lim is the only two-time APPT champion in history, and with the Aussie Millions now affiliated with PokerStars and the APPT, a win here would also see him become the only three-time APPT champ.

That thought is a long way off for Lim though who was just extremely fortunate to even still be alive in the tournament.

From the big blind, Lim check-raised all in for his last 8,350 on a flop of Q♥J♣9♣. His opponent made the insta-call and Lim tabled Q♠3♠ for top pair but that was way behind his opponent who had flopped the nuts with K♠T♦.

Lim was up out of his chair but had to stop when the dealer produced the 3♥.

There was hope.....but surely he couldn't....

Yes he could!

The dealer burned and revealed the Q♦ river card to give Lim a remarkable suckout with a running full house to avoid elimination. He's now back up to around 20,000 in chips and has a pulse once again.

11:30pm: Chew chips up; Juanda out
Level 6: Blinds 250/500 (75)

Earlier in the day we reported how John Juanda had momentarily given Stevan Chew a hard time, but now it seems the tables have turned.

The story goes that on a low board Juanda fired the turn and when Chew called, the dealer presented a brick on the river. Juanda then moved all in for 4,500 with K♥Q♥ for king high and Chew made an impressive call with ace-king high, edging Juanda only slightly and sending him packing.

Not long after, Chew was at it again, this time clashing with Faraz Jaka. The hand went three-way to the flop of 2♠7♥3♥ but after Chew continued for 2,000 only Jaka stuck around. The 4♥ turn prompted a check from Chew before Jaka took the betting lead to the tune of 3,100.

Chew called and players saw the 9♥ river. With four hearts on board both players quickly checked and while Jaka tabled 4♠4♦ for a turned set, Chew scooped another pot with J♥J♦ for a rivered flush.

With his recent momentum Chew brings his stack up to 43,000.

11:10pm: Ivey gone
Level 6: Blinds 250/500 (75)

The rail has become a little thinner in the Crown Poker Room following the elimination of poker immortal Phil Ivey.

A short-stacked Ivey moved all in preflop with J♠9♥ but he ran smack into Tamara Volkoff's two black aces.
There was no help on the flop and by the time the turn was rolled over, Ivey was drawing dead.

11:00pm: 10-minute tank
Level 6: Blinds 250/500 (75)

We arrived to the table just in time to see the river action but thanks to a player tanking for right around 10 minutes, tablemate Tom Hall was out of his seat and happy to recount the action for us.

Hall said that it went three-way to the flop of Q♦9♠5♦ and Martin Jacobson made a bet of 2,000. He was called in two spots and players saw the 5♥ turn. Jacobson barrelled again for 7,000 which left only one other player still in contention when the 4♥ river fell.

It was then that the player took the betting lead with a wager of 7,000. Jacobson pushed a stack of 5,000-denomination chips into the middle, overbetting the pot by effectively putting his opponents to a decision for the remaining 33,000 behind.

That's when what has to be the longest tank of the tournament so far began. The player seemed to change his mind several times throughout the ordeal, alternating between counting his chips and reaching for his cards.

"Will you show?" he asked Jacobson at around the five minute mark.

"I can't say" came the reply.

As time ticked on most of the table was out of their seats. Some discussed the hand between themselves while others took the opportunity to stretch their legs.

"It's just you and me. Everyone has left" Jacobson quipped over the empty seats.

After some more time passed the played reached into his pocket and put his wallet on the table. He pulled out a coin as the surrounding players laughed.

He flipped it and stared at it when it landed heads, still not sure what to do.

"That was fold, but I can't fold" he muttered as the players laughed harder.

A few more minutes and one player finally summoned over the floor staff to request the clock be called. The man who had a decision for his tournament life flashed Q♠9♦ to the table as his time counted down. He eventually tossed the cards to the dealer and lived to fight another orbit.

"Show the bluff MJ!" came the cries from the rail that had developed, but Jacobson didn't oblige as he slid his cards to the middle and collected the pot. The 2014 WSOP Main Event champ now sits with a stack just shy of 140,000.

2016 Aussie Millions Day 1c Martin Jacobson.jpg

Martin Jacobson

10:40pm: Drinan warming up
Level 6: Blinds 250/500 (75)

Connor Drinan is starting to "warm up" nicely in the evening session of Day 1c of the Main Event. Drinan had been a little quiet during the day but with a glass of red wine in hand, he's starting to find some voice and has become pretty active at the table.

Drinan and Steven Zhou in particular seems to be enjoying some verbal banter and in a recent hand, Drinan was able to inflict some more damage with a nice bluff.

Drinan was in the big blind and we believe had three-bet preflop against Zhou's late-position open-raise. There was a fair pot already in the middle when Drinan bet 5,000 in the dark before the Q♠4♥3♦ flop was spread.

Zhou could only chuckle at the antics and tossed his cards back to the dealer as Drinan flashed 9♥5♠ for the complete airball. Drinan is now up to 35,000.

10:25pm: Play resumes
Level 6: Blinds 250/500 (75)


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10:10pm: Break time

The players are now taking their fifteen minute break. When they return, they'll have two more levels to play this evening before their work is done for the day.

9:55pm: McDonald loses some
Level 5: Blinds 200/400 (50)

Mike McDonald raised from the hijack seat to 900 and the player in the big blind made the call.

The flop landed K♠5♥2♥ and it was checked back to McDonald. He fired for 1,000 before his opponent made a snap-min-raise to 2,000. McDonald called the 1,000 and players saw the 4♠ turn.

The player in the big blind continued for 3,500 and was met with the patented McDonald stare-down. McDonald did end up calling the bet and the 2♣ landed on the river.

Both players checked the final street and the big blind showed A♦K♥. McDonald tapped the table and sunk below the starting stack of 30,000 in chips.

9:35pm: Jacobson takes one out
Level 5: Blinds 200/400 (50)

Martin Jacobson and an opponent in the small blind went heads up to a flop of 6♠3♥J♦.

It checked to Jacobson who made a bet of 5,500. The player in the small blind pushed all in for a total of 23,200 and Jacobson called to put him at risk.

Jacobson: A♥J♠
Opponent: K♣9♣

The other player had been caught making a move and needed to find a king to stay alive. It would never come however as the 3♣ turn and T♣ river completed the board.

"Good hand" conceded the eliminated player as Jacobson raked the pot and boosted his stack up to 118,000.

9:20pm: A Wonky call
Level 5: Blinds 200/400 (50)

Vincent "Wonky" Wan is a regular cash game and tournament player at Crown, and he's also one of the lucky few to have ever won the Royal Flush Jackpot promotion that's run here in the poker room.

He now also has 60,000 in chips in the Main Event.

We arrived to the table to see Wan with a decision for his tournament life when his opponent moved all in on a board of T♠5♦A♠6♥J♠. Wan pained over the decision for several minutes - re-checking his hole cards and sitting up from his chair. Eventually he splashed out his chips to call and was glad that he did.

His opponent tabled K♥T♦ for not a whole lot as Wan slammed his A♥A♣ down on the table triumphantly.

9:10pm: Kanit can't beat it
Level 5: Blinds 200/400 (50)

Mustapha Kanit is a familiar face on these shores with the popular Italian winning two Aussie Millions gold rings in just a few days back in 2014. Since then, Kanit has gone on to take the world by storm, winning millions of dollars to become Italy's all-time leading money earner.

Kanit is part of our Day 1c field but he's just taken a hefty hit to his chip stack.

Preflop, Kanit three-bet to 2,300 in position and his opponent called to see a flop of 4♦6♥K♥. Action checked to Kanit who continued for 2,300. His opponent called and tapped the table again on the 9♥ turn. This time Kanit upped the price to 5,500 and his opponent came along as the 5♣ completed the board.

This time Kanit's opponent decided to take the lead, betting 8,000 into the middle. Kanit deliberated a few moments before making the call but he was forced to muck when his opponent tabled J♥T♥ for a flush. Kanit slips back to 14,000.

9:00pm: Kurganov caught out
Level 5: Blinds 200/400 (50)

Igor Kurganov bricked half a million dollars' worth of buy ins in the $100k Challenge this week and things don't look like they're improving for the Russian after a recent hand.

On a board of 7♥J♣T♠Q♣4♦ and with around 12,500 in the pot, Kurganov first to act dropped 30,000 in chips into the middle - more than enough to cover his opponent's stack of 17,000.

"Show me one card" pleaded Kurganov's opponent, who was giving the decision for his tournament life some serious thought.

In the end he did slide the rest of his stack in and Kurganov sheepishly flipped over 8♥6♥. The other player held Q♦T♦ for a turned two pair to score a double up.

With that misstep Kurganov slides down to 41,000.

igor-kurganov-aussie-millions.jpg

8:40pm: Play resumes
Level 5: Blinds 200/400 (50)

The players are back from their dinner break with the blinds jumping to 200/400 with a 50-chip ante. The big screen is showing 290 players remaining from a starting field of 332.


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7:30pm: Extended break for dinner

The players have just left on their 75-minute dinner break. Join us at 8:45pm local time for continued coverage.

7:20pm: Two pair for O'Dwyer
Level 4: Blinds 150/300 (25)

High Roller specialist Steve O'Dwyer just kicked things off in a pot with a raise from the button to 1,100. The player in the small blind put in a three-bet to 3,500 and O'Dwyer called to see a flop of 2♦7♠3♠.

The three-bettor continued for 2,500 and O'Dwyer, staring his opponent down, made the call.

The 6♣ arrived on the turn and the player in the small blind led again for 5,200. Still staring intensely, O'Dwyer committed the chips before the 6♠ river was revealed.

The action then went check-check with the aggressor tabling Q♠T♥ for queen high which was beaten by O'Dwyer's A♥7♥ for a flopped top pair that had improved to two pair on the end.

O'Dwyer now sits with 36,000 in chips.

7:10pm: That escalated quickly
Level 4: Blinds 150/300 (25)

With three limpers in the pot before him for 300 apiece, Brian Rast looked down at his hole cards and decided to raise from the big blind to 1,300. Two players made the call before the action was back on the small blind.

Rather than call this time, the player decided to re-raise, making it 4,400 to go. Rast thought for a bit and made the call as the other two thought better of things and let their hands go.

Suddenly a limped pot had blown up to over 11,000 preflop!

The flop of A♠9♥6♦ was checked by both players before the small blind fired out 5,000 on the K♣ turn to take it down. Rast is still going strong with about 55,000.

7:00pm: Kitty straightened by Roberts
Level 4: Blinds 150/300 (25)

Kitty Kuo and Brian Roberts have just collided in a big pot with the American pro landing a double up.

We arrived on the turn on a board of 3♦7♣8♥T♦. The pot was already healthy when Roberts bet out 4,800 before Kuo announced herself all in. Robert snap-called and Kuo saw the bad news.

Roberts tabled J♣9♥ for the nut straight which had Kuo's 9♠9♣ in a world of hurt.

The river was the A♣ and Roberts' remaining 15,075 chips were paid off to jump him up over 50,000 in chips, as Kuo was left with 25,000.

kitty-kuo-aussie-millions.jpg

6:40pm: Jacobson counter-punching
Level 4: Blinds 150/300 (25)

Only a few hands after we reported on a player getting the best of Jacobson, it seems the prior world champ has struck back.

The board read Q♦6♠K♣8♣ when we arrived at the table to see a bloated pot and Jacobson all in after the dealer had pulled the bets in. Jacobson had committed his last 12,400 extra with the pot at around 65,000.

"Why do I put you on kings? F**k. Did you hit a set? I've got a set" bemoaned Jacobson's opponent.

After a few minutes the player mucked his cards - a huge fold if he was honest about his holdings given he was getting around 5:1 with a set.

Jacobson raked in the pot with a smile and stacked up around 77,000 in chips.

6:30pm: Jacobson and McDonald hit some turbulence
Level 4: Blinds 150/300 (25)

2014 WSOP Main Event Champion Martin Jacobson and winner of everything Mike McDonald are sitting at the same table here on Day 1c and they're joined by another player who seems to be giving them a bit of trouble.

McDonald took to Twitter earlier in proceedings to share a photo of himself and the difficult player.

"This guy owns me in a big pot and then asks for a photo #AussieMillions main event not going according to plan" read the Tweet.

The player clashed with and got the best of Jacobson and McDonald in a recent hand. Jacobson opened to 700 under the gun and McDonald made the call before their opponent three-bet to 2,100 from the small blind. After a call from Jacobson, McDonald threw his hand away and the flop was spread 3♥3♣J♦.

The three-bettor checked and when action was back on Jacobson he asked to see his opponent's stack. Throwing out a 5,000 denomination chip, Jacobson announced what sounded like 4,800 and almost immediately the other player raised to 12,000.

Jacobson went into the tank while McDonald took the opportunity to snap another photo. Eventually releasing his hand, Jacobson forfeited the pot and it was shipped to he and McDonald's nemesis.

6:10pm: When stars collide
Level 4: Blinds 150/300 (25)

Aditya Agarwal has been heavily in the action so far today and we just caught him in another big pot, this time against fellow Team PokerStars Pro Chen-An Lin.

The chips were all in on the flop of 3♥5♥4♦ with Agarwal continuation betting with his A♠Q♥ which forced him to call the short-stacked shove from Lin with 5♣5♠.

Agarwal would need some help but the J♣ turn and 8♠ river bricked the board. Lin is now back up to around his starting stack while Agarwal slips to 18,000.

6:00pm: Young dominated
Level 4: Blinds 150/300 (25)

Rory Young won a WSOP APAC bracelet in this room in 2014 and he's now on the hunt for an APPT title to match it. However his stack in the Aussie Millions Main Event just took a small hit.

A short-stacked player moved all in from late position for his last 4,175 and Young made the call in the big blind with Q♠J♦. Unfortunately for Young he was dominated by his opponent's K♠Q♥. The board ran out 3♠K♣7♥7♠3♦ to give the player a double up, but Young is still travelling in good shape on around 55,000.

5:55pm: Play resumes
Level 4: Blinds 150/300 (25)


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5:40pm: Scheduled break

The remaining players have stepped away for another 15-minute break.

5:40pm: Raiden Kan awarded GPI Asia POTY

Just as the players went on break we had a special presentation in the Crown Poker Room as APPT President Danny McDonagh awarded the GPI Asia Player of the Year to Raiden Kan.

The GPI provides points based on global events all around the poker world and during 2015 Kan landed cashes in the Philippines, China, Australia, Spain, Macau and a string of results in the Czech Republic.

Other awards for 2015 included the Asia Player of the Year which was won by Alan Lau and the ANZ Player of the Year won by Aussie Millions champ Manny Stavropoulos. Both of those awards are based on PokerStars events in the region.

raiden-kan-gpi-award.jpg

5:25pm: Sixes full for Zhu
Level 3: Blinds 100/200 (25)

Most recent PokerStars Team Pro Yaxi Zhu is here for Day 1c. She recently took down a pot after some confusion preflop.

It folded to Zhu on the button who put in a 1,000 chip and announced a raise to 550. The dealer mishearing told the table it was a raise to 500 and the player in the small blind called. When players were receiving change Zhu pointed out that she had raised to 550 and the floor staff were summoned over.

When the issue was sorted out the two players saw a flop of 6♣7♦6♦ and after a check from the small blind, Zhu fired for 500. The bet was met with a call and the dealer turned the 4♠. Checked back to Zhu she continued for another 1,200 and with another call the 6♠ appeared on the river.

Both players checked on the end and Zhu tabled 9♥7♠ for sixes full of sevens. Her opponent mucked angrily and Zhu boosted her stack to 32,000 in chips.

5:05pm: More for Agarwal
Level 3: Blinds 100/200 (25)

There are plenty of Team PokerStars Pros filling the floor of the Crown Poker Room this afternoon with Jason Mercier and Liv Boeree recently spotted in the huge field.

Another Team Pro going well is India's Aditya Agarwal.

In a recent pot we observed Agarwal facing a bet of 1,100 and a call on a flop of 3♦7♥5♠. From the button, Agarwal raised it up to 3,700 which shook off one opponent, but the second called again to see the T♦ hit the turn.

Action checked to Agarwal and his bet of 5,800 was enough to take it down. Agarwal is up to around 38,000 in chips.

4:50pm: Spindler is spinning it up
Level 3: Blinds 100/200 (25)

The action folded around to Benny Spindler's button and the German raised it up to 600. The player in the big blind bumped it up again and Spindler called the raise of 1,700.

The dealer spread out a flop of 7♣T♥8♠ and the big blind continued for 1,500 in chips. The two gave each other a quick glance and with a call from Spindler the 2♦ turn rolled off.

Both players checked before a river of 9♦. The player in the big blind reached into his stack and led out for 2,350. Spindler made the call and saw he was good against his opponent's holding.

Opponent: A♣K♥
Spindler: 9♠2♠

Spindler had rivered two pair which was in front of his opponent's ace high. With that hand the German now hovers around 50,000 in chips.

4:35pm: Agarwal takes one from Seidel
Level 3: Blinds 100/200 (25)

Erik Seidel has already amassed an impressive stack today but he just lost a pot to Team PokerStars Pro Aditya Agarwal.

We arrived the see the board spread 8♠T♣6♠Q♣ and after a check from Agarwal, Seidel made it 3,300 to go. Agarwal called and the dealer flipped over the 8♥ river.

The action went check-check and Seidel tabled A♦T♥ only to see he had been rivered by Agarwal's K♣8♣. Seidel is still sitting pretty with around 90,000 in chips while Agarwal climbs to 32,000.

4:20pm: Bain puts Alner to the test
Level 3: Blinds 100/200 (25)

Tristan Bain is a dangerous player to contend with, especially on day ones. He's the sort of player that is not afraid to play big pots early to try and accumulate a big stack. Boom or bust.

In a recent pot we arrived to see Bain bet 625 on a flop of 3♠8♠4♥. Tom Alner was his opponent and made the call to see the T♠ hit the turn. Two checks and the river was the J♥. Bain checked again and Alner felt good enough about his spot to bet 1,800, however Bain sprung to life with a big river check-raise to 8,150.
Alner thought for a while but let it go.

Bain won the battle, but Alner is so far winning the war, with Bain sitting on 16,000 and Alner with 45,000, on a tough table that also includes James Broom, Dean Blatt, Karib Karib and Bernard Beh.

4:15pm: Ivey in the house
Level 3: Blinds 100/200 (25)

Phil Ivey has arrived in the Aussie Millions and has taken his seat on Table 28, much to the awe of the rest of his table who are mostly relatively unknown.

phil-ivey-aussie-millions.jpg

4:10pm: Play resumes
Level 3: Blinds 100/200 (25)


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3:55pm: Break it up!

The players are now taking a fifteen-minute break.

3:35pm: Chewed up
Level 2: Blinds 100/200

Stevan Chew is a renowned name in the Australian poker world. Perhaps that's why he was so offended when another reporting team inquired about his identity.

"Did he just ask me my name?" Chew was overheard questioning Matthew Wakeman on the adjacent table. The rumour goes that Wakeman has taught Chew everything he knows at poker but the mentor couldn't answer his question.

If that wasn't painful enough for Chew, he got his ego bruised again just moments later when John Juanda took a pot from him. We caught the action on the K♣6♠2♣ flop where it was checked through to see a turn of 3♠.

Juanda, first to act in the big blind, then led for 1,200 which was met by a call from Chew. When the 2♦ river peeled off Juanda made a huge shove for over 21,000. Chew didn't take long before giving up the hand as the pot was pushed Juanda's way.

"Would you have called 3,000?" Juanda asked.

"I would've had to give you a good stare down" Chew replied with a laugh.

Alongside Chew and Juanda on this tough table sits Team PokerStars Pro Celina Lin, Faraz Jaka and Ryan Otto. We'll be sure to keep an eye on it today to see what else develops.

3:15pm: Queens for Quoss
Level 2: Blinds 100/200

Alek Givotovsky limped under the gun before Fabian Quoss raised it to 700. That didn't scare off too many players with three callers before Givotovsky came along as well to make it five ways to a flop of 4♠2♣Q♣.

Action checked to Quoss who continued for 1,600. Play folded to Michel Bouskila who called in the big blind before Givotovsky sprung to life with a check-raise to 6,500. Quoss thought for a bit before making the call as Bouskila decided to get out of the way.

The turn was the J♥ and Givotovsky glanced at his opponent's stack before plonking 15,000 in the middle - enough to put Quoss all in. Quoss didn't hesitate and instantly called, revealing Q♠Q♥ for top set. Givotovsky was in trouble up was still alive with his 6♣4♣ flush draw. However the river bricked the A♦ to land Quoss the big double up.

Givotovsky drops to 9,500 with Quoss climbing to around 50,000 in chips.

2:55pm: Kanaan under the radar
Level 2: Blinds 100/200

One man who often flies under the radar is Michael Kanaan. An unassuming character at the tables, Kanaan has one of the best records in the country with an ANZPT title, deep runs in events throughout Asia and online success in major championships.

We recently saw Kanaan pick up a small pot to kick his Aussie Millions tournament off on the right note.

Picking up the action on a flop of 5♦K♦4♥, Michael Kanaan checked the action from the small blind to his opponent on the button who checked behind. The turn was the 9♦ and Kanaan checked and then called a bet of 700 to see the 7♣ complete the board.

Kanaan checked for a third time and his opponent checked it down from behind with queen-ten, but Kanaan had a pair with his 8♥8♠ taking it down.

2:45pm: It's Connor's world
Level 2: Blinds 100/200

It must be a nice feeling sitting down to play a $10,600 Main Event knowing that you are currently sitting pretty in second chip position on the final table of a $100,000 buy-in event at the same time.

That's the position of Connor Drinan.

The man famous for his pocket aces being cracked by pocket aces during the $1 million buy-in Big One for One Drop event, Drinan is developing quite a poker resume. With almost $8 million in career earnings including a recent fifth place in the Asia Championship of Poker Main Event and a runner-up result in a High Roller Event at the PCA, Drinan has already locked up another AU$281,260 in the $100k Challenge here and could win as much as AU$1.446 million.

However that final table will have to wait until Saturday. For now, Drinan must start again here in the Main Event.

We recently saw him pick up a small pot on a board of T♣T♦9♦7♦. Drinan had raised preflop and checked the flop. When the player in the big blind led out for 700 on the turn, Drinan popped it to 2,000 and that was good to take it down.

connor-drinan-aussie-millions.jpg

2:35pm: More arrivals
Level 2: Blinds 100/200

We're up to 279 entries today so far now. Well ahead of the 180 and 280 fields on Day 1a and 1b respectively.

In the mix are two of last year's Main Event final tablists - Brian Rast and Anthony Legg. They'll no doubt be looking to improve on their result from this time last year and take down the title here this week.

We've also spotted $100,000 Challenge final tablist Fedor Holz, and high rollers John Juanda and Connor Drinan on the felt today.

2:25pm: Play resumes
Level 2: Blinds 100/200


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2:10pm: First break

The players have stepped away from the tournament floor for their first scheduled break. The action resumes in 15 minutes.

2:00pm: Great start for Team PokerStars
Level 1: Blinds 50/100

Not long after Team Pro Bryan Huang raked the pot we recently reported on, teammate Randy Lew scooped a large one of his own.

With the board showing A♦6♣7♦J♣ Lew check-raised from 2,100 up to 6,600. His opponent called and the river fell the 9♦. Lew reached into his stack and decided on a bet of 9.400.

His opponent, breathing heavily, thought on his decision for almost a minute before tossing in one chip to signify a call. Lew revealed J♦8♦ for a rivered flush which was good enough to win the pot.

The early momentum sees Lew climb to near 50,000 in chips.

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Randy 'nanonoko' Lew at the table today

1:45pm: Bryan barrels
Level 1: Blinds 50/100

The action began with Team PokerStars Pro Bryan Huang opening to 300 from the hijack seat before his opponent in the cutoff made it 800 to go. Bryan flicked in a call and the flop landed 6♣K♥4♣.

The action went check-check before the dealer turned the T♣. Huang led out for 1,300 and when his opponent matched the bet the 4♥ river peeled off.

Huang bet again, this time for 3,600 and the other player quickly threw his cards away. The hand brings Huang up to a little over the 30,000 chip starting stack.

1:30pm: So you're saying there's a Chance
Level 1: Blinds 50/100

Fresh off his $25,000 Challenge victory for $790,560 this week, Chance Kornuth is back in the Crown Poker Room and raking pots.

The board read Q♠8♥2♦K♠K♦ and Kornuth checked his option in the big blind seat. His opponent made a bet of 375 into the relatively small pot before Kornuth put in a sizable raise of 1,700.

The opponent gave it some thought and ended up throwing in a call before Kornuth showed him the bad news. Tabling K♥Q♥ for the effective nuts, Kornuth took it down and is off to a good start here on Day 1c.

1:15pm: Numbers climbing
Level 1: Blinds 50/100

We're yet to see much action yet in the first level here, but what we have seen is a tough field continue to grow. As more latecomers join the line at the registration desk, several more notable players have taken their seats.

It's been confirmed that Team Pro Bryan Huang is now at the table, and joining him in the field is PokerStars teammate Aditya Agarwal. Also seen were Benny Spindler, Sam Greenwood, Jordan Westmorland, Andrew Lichtenberger, Thomas Muehloecker and Paul Newey.

And another former champ has joined us this week. Canada's Ami Barer, who emerged triumphant in the 2014 Aussie Millions Main Event, has taken his seat.

12:55pm: The pros are out to play
Level 1: Blinds 50/100

Things have only just begun here for our final flight of Day 1 and we've already spotted too many notable players to count. This is well and truly shaping up to be a stacked field with a long line still at the registration desk.

With the $100,000 Challenge on pause until Saturday those high rollers are expected to jump in the Main Event today. Chance Kornuth, David Peters, Stephen Chidwick, Fabian Quoss, Erik Seidel, Jeff Rossiter and Mike McDonald are just a few already at the tables this afternoon.

Joining them are the PokerStars contingent comprising of Celina Lin, Chen-an Lin and Randy 'nanonoko' Lew. Team Pro Bryan Huang was also seen in the registration line and will likely take his seat shortly.

Also in attendance are Tom Hall, Jesse Silvia, Dong Kim, Russell Thomas, Raiden Kan, Matthew Wakeman, Stevan Chew, Alex Lynskey, Dean Blatt, Daniel Neilson, Van Marcus, Michael Kanaan, Shivan Abdine, Rory Young and Patrick Healey.

With late registration open all day the field is sure to grow. We'll keep you posted with any notable late arrivals and all the action as it unfolds here on Aussie Millions Main Event Day 1c.

12:40pm: Third and final flight kicks off in Aussie Millions Main Event
Level 1: Blinds 50/100

It's Australia Day and a huge field is expected today in the Crown Poker Room for the third and final flight of the 2016 Aussie Millions Main Event. It's a public holiday and the last opportunity to chase the dream. It looks like we'll be well over the 700-player mark this year which is a tremendous result.

Today the shuffle up and deal honours were given to none other than "The Magician" Antonio Esfandiari.

"Play good!" was Esfandiari's advice to today's hopefuls before he went on to say that the Aussie Millions is right up there when it comes to his favourite stops on the international poker circuit.

With a huge queue of players still lining up at the registration booth, Esfandiari gave the official instructions to shuffle up and deal as the cards were launched into the air on Day 1c.

We'll be playing seven 90-minute levels today which means play will wrap up around 1:45am tonight.

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Take a look at the Aussie Millions official website for tournament schedules, structures, news and information from the Crown Poker Room in Melbourne.

Live updates brought to you courtesy of Brad Kain and Heath Chick. Photos by Jonno Pittock and Christian Zetzsche.