ACOP Main Event: Depa leads them to the money on Day 3
Day 3 of the Asia Championships of Poker (ACOP) Main Event was a day split in two. The first part teased us with the excitement and thrills of tournament poker in Macau, while the second part brought us a touch back to reality.
We started out the day with a field of 72 players. With such a good structure, some questioned whether we would reach 40 players, let alone get close to the money for the top 25. A little under six levels would be required, but we got there in the end with the day ending with the burst of the money bubble as exactly 25 players survived the day.
We set out at a cracking pace with some brutal bustouts to start things off with a bang. High profile players Michael Tureniec and Billy "The Croc" Argyros were the victims of some Halloween scares with bad beats ending their day early.
Team PokerStars were looking to make a recovery after a rough Day 2. Team Online's Randy Lew and Naoya Kihara both landed an early double up to build some momentum for the day ahead. However things weren't so positive for Eugene Katchalov:
Ran pretty sour today, first lost KK to JT then KK to JJ to bust...both on the river :(. Time to regroup then High roller in couple days— Eugene Katchalov (@EugeneKatchalov) October 31, 2013
Hung-sheng Lin, Dennis Huntly, Edison Nguyen, Raiden Kan, Dave Ewing, Keith Gipson, Keith Ferrera, Winfred Yu, reigning Aussie Millions champ Mervin Chan and EPT champ Tom Middleton were also among the casualties as the field narrowed to just 31 players at the dinner break.
They had averaged close to 100 big blinds up until that point, but that didn't stop the rapid-fire action as the bubble approached.
When we hit a wall with 27 players remaining, it didn't look like the money would be reached within the scheduled six levels of play. Short stacks Sunny Jung and Yujung Choi survived all-in scares to double up, but APPT Seoul champion Aaron Lim wasn't quite so fortunate. Lim committed preflop with Q♥Q♣ against Randy Lew's A♦K♦ but an ace on the flop sent the young Aussie to the rail to leave us on the bubble.
And we didn't have to wait long for it to pop.
David Martirosyan moved all in preflop with A♣J♦ with Yat Wai Cheng taking him on with 2♥2♦. There were some anxious moments, but the board of 9♠3♦8♦T♠K♠ ultimately left the pair in front to sadly end Martirosyan's tournament in 26th place.
With that, Danny McDonagh called an end to the day with around 25 minutes to run in the level. The final 25 players bagged up their chips, pleased to learn they were guaranteed at least HK$198,000 for their efforts here in Macau.
On top of the chip counts will be Jonathan Depa who bagged up a whopping 662,000 chips at the end of play.
Peter Chan is close behind with Randy Lew, Naoya Kihara, Devan Tang, Sunny Jung, Terry Fan and Kevin Schulz also still in contention for the ACOP Main Event Spadie. Stay tuned to the Live Updates section for the complete list of counts and Day 4 seating draw.
They'll return at 3:00pm on Friday to duke it out once again with the final table now within their sights. We hope you'll join us for all the action tomorrow, and until then, Happy Halloween!
Heath "TassieDevil" Chick is a Freelance Contributor for the PokerStars Blog.