APPT Cebu: Never say die

You might have noticed that we haven't posted anything in the last few hours. After the elimination of Michael Kanaan in fourth place two and a half hours ago, the remaining three players have shown remarkable resiliency.

First Alistair Duff seemed marked for death. He got all in against Nick Wong after flopping a medium flush draw and an inside straight draw. Nick called with... a slightly bigger medium flush draw and a slightly bigger inside straight draw, not to mention a bigger high card. Nick paired his high card on the turn and made the bigger of the two flushes on the river, leaving Alistair with just six big blinds once the stacks were counted down.

Alistair moved in the next hand and was called by both blinds. The rail leaned forward, people craning their necks to catch what was likely to be the next elimination. Nick and Hoang Anh Do checked all the way down. Nick showed king-ten; Do showed king-queen; neither made a pair. Alistair turned over his ten-five, which flopped a pair of 5s for the triple up. He was right back.

The boys resumed to passing blinds and antes around until Do found himself in a tough spot against Nick. Do limped the button and Nick passed the big blind option. Nick then check-called bets of 55,000 and 105,000 on a board of 2♣2♦3♥6♠. When the river came 5♥, Nick came alive with an over-bet of 450,000. Do tanked for almost four minutes. He kept looking at his chip stack as if he wanted to make the call but couldn't quite find the gumption to do so. Finally, he announced a call with all the determination he could muster. Nick rolled over 4♥2♥, a 6-high straight, which was good.

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4-2 is the nuts for Nick

That loss crippled Do to about 300,000. He folded his big blind after the limits pushed up to 30k/60k/10k, then moved in from the small blind against Alistair on the next hand. Alistair called with [10h]6♠ but couldn't run down Do's Q♥3♥ as both players missed the board. It was a small sign of life for Do.

The next hand he shoved again, from the button, for 520,000. Nick was in the big blind and snap-called with A♦6♦. Things looked all but over for Do and his J♥2♥ when an ace flopped, 7♦4♣A♥. But wouldn't you know, the turn and river came running hearts, K♥ and T♥, to give Do a flush and push him back up to about 1.1 million -- to the chagrin of a highly amused Nick and his supporters on the rail, including Jay Tan and Ken Wong.

And that's where we stand. There's no end in sight and, to be honest, the players seem to be tightening up a bit. Limping the button is becoming more common. There is a lot of checking going on after the flop. Could we be in for a repeat of the Season 2 APPT Manila final table that stretched so far into the night, people were sleeping on the rail?

For the sake of the media desk, we hope not. For the sake of the remaining three players, we certainly hope so. They're playing for 5.9 million pesos. They should get their money's worth.

Dave Behr
@PokerStars in Day 4