PokerStars Festival Manila: Falcon in front as final table set

The PokerStars Manila Main Event final table is now set after today's 14 starting runners have been cut down to nine. Incredibly, both Sam Razavi and Mike Takayama have made unofficial back-to-back final tables after finishing second place and fourth place respectively in last year's APPT Manila Main Event.

Also achieving an impressive feat of his own is chip leader Michael Falcon who was missing from the Main Event final table during player introductions because he was simultaneously on the final table of the PokerStars Cup event at a neighbouring table!

PSF Manila Michael Falcon side event.jpg

Falcon finding a few reasons to smile

While play is just recommencing, let's take a look at how today's evictees were relegated to the rail.

Corbin White fell first as big stack Falcon continued his trend of terminating tablemates. White four-bet jammed with A♣J♦ but Falcon had that dominated with A♠Q♣. They were chasing each other's kicker to hit Broadway on the K♠T♣6♦ flop but the 7♥ turn and 8♦ river saw Falcon Hold. White collected PHP285,000 and we were down to 13 players.

It took 30 minutes for Raphael Gall to join White on the rail. Gall shoved from the button with J♠T♦ before Uday Basnal called to put him at risk from the big blind holding 9♥9♣. The coinflip would go Bansal's way when the community cards landed 7♦3♠A♣7♠Q♣.

Twelfth place went to Yo Seb Rhee who collected PHP322,000 for his efforts. He made a hero call with A♠J♥ for a huge five-bet jam from Bansal holding just K♣7♥ but was quickly punished for it. The K♠6♥5♥ flop saw Bansal pair his king, and while Rhee picked up flush outs on the 9♥ turn, the 5♦ river couldn't save him.

PSF Manila Yo Seb Rhee elimination.jpg

Yo Seb Rhee

Just 15 minutes later it was Duc Nguyen's time to go. He ran 7♣7♦ into Hoa Thinh Nguyen's T♠T♣. The monochrome 2♠8♠Q♠ flop left Duc Nguyen chasing just one out and he couldn't find it with the fall of the 2♣ turn or 5♥ river.

And the title of final table bubble boy went to Andre Peters who was sent reeling out of the tournament area in brutal fashion. He three-bet jammed for nearly 23 big blinds over Falcon's open but the latter called it off and the cards went on their backs.

Peters: Q♦Q♣
Falcon: 6♥6♣

Peters was in a great spot to secure the double up and that didn't look set to change by the turn with the board reading T♥T♠9♦2♣. On the river, however, the rail birds erupted as the 6♠ rolled off to seal Peters' fate.

PSF Manila Andre Peters.jpg

Andre Peters before the brutal river card

His elimination took us to the final table where things are just getting going again. Here's where our final nine are sitting and how they stack up.

PokerStars Festival Main Event Final Table Seat Draw

Seat 1: Antii Halme (Finland) - 1,995,000
Seat 2: Michael Falcon (Denmark) - 6,135,000
Seat 3: Kenneth Buck (Australia) - 495,000
Seat 4: Mike Takayama (Philippines) - 605,000
Seat 5: Hoa Thinh Nguyen (Vietnam) - 850,000
Seat 6: Sam Razavi (United Kingdom) - 1,265,000
Seat 7: Tien Than Nguyen (Vietnam) - 380,000
Seat 8: Jaehyun Lim (South Korea) - 740,000
Seat 9: Uday Bansal (India) - 5,315,000

PSF Manila final table.jpg

Stick with us as the exciting conclusion to the inaugural PokerStars Festival Main Event festival plays out and we see a champion crowned!

Brad Kain
@PokerStars in PokerStars Festival