APPT 9 Manila: Alex Lee grinds his way to victory at the Warm-up event

Alex Lee - Warm Up ChampionThe APPT 9 Manila Warm-Up event saw a total of 570 entries spanning the three day one flights and concluded with Alex Lee from Malaysia proving too tough to beat at the heads up round against Edmil Marcelo of the Philippines. Lee earned himself the first place cash purse of PHP1,082,200 along with the event trophy.

Lee entered day 2 as one of the chip leaders, seventh from the top of the rung. When asked how he got there, he expressed, "I felt very lucky to find myself in good tables sitting with many good players. It's what helps me stay sharp and focused." With many players still in the field, Lee quietly increased his stack throughout the day by grinding and grinding, winning many small to mid-ranged pots with hardly a showdown. It is no surprise that we would miss his hands because he hardly ever had any exciting hands revealed. And that's exaclty how he likes it.

Lee entered the final table with over a million in chips, which was second in command to chip leader Lester Edoc. "It was good for me to have Lester on my right because I could play a bit faster. You always adjust once you understand the players around you."

Lee was quite impressive at the final table. He didn't eliminate many of his opponents like most winners most often do, instead, Lee applied the same successful strategy that got him that far, the grind, leaving tablemates to wonder what he may be holding. Lee did eliminate Edoc in 5th place then ousted Yen Han "Pete" Chen in third to eventually face Marcelo at heads up. Lee had a sizable lead of 4M chips to Marcelo's 1.7M chips. Lee shared, " I had a big stack against him so I decided to do what I've been doing the entire tournament, continue to grind. I could afford to lose some chips if necessary and even if people say I am pot committed, I really think about it because I would rather not give up too many chips. I also get a sense of whether or not the player I am up against is willing to take a risk."

As for runner-up Marcelo, he had some great calls and double ups at the final table that earned him his spot at heads up, but Lee was just unshakable. Lee had him in the ropes for a majority of the round that even if at one point Marcelo climbed up to around 2.5M chips, Lee seemed unaffected. He just continued to grind until he gained them back. After that, Lee's towering stacks were practically "impenetrable". Marcelo simply could not catch up. At the final hand, Lee had an 11:1 advantage, and moved all in. Marcelo decided to get his remaining short stack in as well but his 6♣5♣ against Lee's Q♣8♠ was not good enough. With the board running A♦3♣3♠Q♥2♠, the grueling battle that Marcelo had to endure finally ended.

Congratulations to Alex Lee for his impressive and incredible victory throughout the entire event!

Head to the APPT 9 Manila Warm-up updates for a good read on some of the action all day and at the final table.

Final Table Payouts (in PHP)
1st Alex Lee (Malaysia) 1,082,200
2nd Edmil Marcelo (Philippines) 671,800
3rd Yen Han "Pete" Chen (Chinese Taipei) 415,500
4th Peter Ronn Baterina (Philippines) 317,000
5th Lester Edoc (Philippines) 218,900
6th Collin Ho (Singapore) 174,200
7th In Sin (South Korea) 141,800
8th David Lee (USA) 119,400
9th Fu Bang "Pipi" Huang 99,500


Other Events

At event #3, the PHP2,000 Re-buy NLH event, a total of 102 entries were recorded with 12 places paid. The eventual winner was Hideki Takafuji from Japan. He claimed PHP155,500 for his victory.

Rebuy Event: 12 places (in PHP)
1st Hideki Takafuji (Japan) 155,500
2nd Hui Yao (China) 105,600
3rd John Tech (Philippines) 70,400
4th Alex Ward (UK) 55,700
5th Sam Nee (Malaysia) 44,000
6th Anton Chernykh (Russia) 38,100
7th Brian Gibbons (UK) 32,300
8th Woodchul Cho (Korea) 26,400
9th Jinduk Kim (South Korea) 20,500
10th Mikhail Olenikov (Russia) 14,756
11th Kenny Lim Teck Wee (Brunei Darrussalam) 11,700
12th Nelia Nepomuceno (Philippines) 11,700


At event #4, the Deep Stack Pot Limit Omaha, a total of 76 entries was recorded in the books with ten players seeing the money. Charles Esteban (Philippines) was the last man standing and earned himself PHP268,720.

Deep Stack PLO: (in PHP)
1st Charles Esteban (Philippines) 268,720
2nd Eugene Co (Philippines) 179,100
3rd Iori Yogo (Japan) 119,400
4th Xiao Chuan Zhang (China) 99,500
5th Maria Carmen Esdaile (Philippines) 79,600
6th Rohit Bhalla (India) 69,700
7th Edison Marzan (Philippines) 59,700
8th Rolf Galasen (Norway) 49,800
9th Bohan Xiao (China) 39,800
10th Watai Yuichi (Japan) 29,900

Triccia David
@PokerStars in Season 9