APPT Macau: Toma tumbles in sixth
A couple of big hands over the last half-hour completed the swift fall of Tsugunari Toma from a second-place stack to elimination in sixth place.
The 30-year-old from Osaka, Japan had earlier been up around 1.4 million chips, then good for second place and within shouting distance of leader Xing Zhou. At the time, Toma's prospects for the rest of the day were looking good.
But Toma's fortunes soon took a downward turn, and before long he had fallen below 1 million. Then the most painful hit came for Toma here in Level 23 after he called an Alan Sass shove for 327,000 holding K♥K♠ versus the American's A♣Q♣.
All was fine for Toma after the 5♦J♦9♠ flop and 8♠ turn. But the A♦ fell on the river to save Sass, and suddenly Toma was down to around 100,000.
Toma would fold his way through a few hands, his stack depleting still further down to just 34,000 (not quite two big blinds). Finally he'd commit those last chips with 9♠8♥ and hoped his hand would improve versus Ying Kit Chan's K♥3♣.
But the board rolled out 3♥K♣A♠[10h]6♣ to pair Chan's hand twice, and Toma hit the rail in sixth.
Xing Zhou continues to hold a commanding lead with five players left, holding 3.6 million while no one else has as much as Sass's 725,000.
Meanwhile, the Frenchman Jacques Zaicik just doubled his shortest stack to about 200,000. His countryman Bertrand "ElkY" Grospellier is here on the rail supporting Zaicik, fresh from surviving his leap from the Macau Tower.
Talk about a tumble! Take a look:
Martin Harris is Freelance Contributor to the PokerStars Blog.