PokerStars Festival Manila: Falcon flying high on Day 1B

PokerStars Festival Manila Main Event Day 1B is done and dusted.

We saw another 177 poker hopefuls fill the Grand Ballroom here at City of Dreams tonight, and adding that to Day 1A's 132 we're currently at a running total of 309. Of today's batch it was 44 who still had chips when the action came to a close, they'll join the 38 survivors from yesterday on Day 2 come Sunday.

Topping the leaderboard today was Denmark's Michael Falcon who accumulated 307,100 across 12 levels of play. He took the lead late in the day after busting former chip leader Mark Gruendemann. The two of them got all the money in with the board reading A♣6♦3♦A♥ and as Falcon held A♠K♥, Gruendemann's T♦8♦ was drawing thin. Fortunately for Falcon the 5♠ river was safe and he scooped the important pot.

Falcon's last live score was a deep run for a 59th finish in the World Series of Poker Millionaire Maker where he picked up $18,950. Now he's primed for another good result after an impressive showing today.

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Leading the way - Michael Falcon

Along with Falcon in the field today were a host of notable names. A strong Indian contingent was out in force with the likes of Dhaval Mudgal, Aditya Sushant, Kunal Patni, Uday Bansal, Dhanesh Chainani and Siddarth Singhvi to name a few. Also pulling up seats were High Roller champion Peter Plater, and familiar faces Jun Obara, Linh Tran, Victor Chong and Lester Edoc.

It was a mixed bag of results as some players spun up big stacks while their counterparts fell by the wayside. Ahyan Adgas was one who didn't fare well after he was eliminated earlier in a coinflip against Changjo Im. Adgas reshoved with ace six and was called by Im with pocket threes, and while spiking two pair would usually be a good thing, it wasn't enough as the 6♥3♦2♣5♠A♣ board also saw Im flop a set.

Falling in the penultimate level of the day was Antii Halme who had a bittersweet couple of hands that saw him double up first with pocket aces, before being felted in the following pot after running his pocket kings into the aces of Michael Brunner.

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Antii Halme

Adgas and Brunner may have been relegated to the rail but the 44 Day 2 qualifiers are all still in with a chance. They'll have a day's rest tomorrow as the final flight plays out before returning in a bid to battle closer to the title, the trophy, and what will ultimately be a sizable first prize.

As always we'll be here to keep you up to date on what's happening in Manila. Be sure to check back with us tomorrow for all the exciting action from Day 2 of the PokerStars Festival Main Event.

Brad Kain
@PokerStars in PokerStars Festival