Macau Millions Day 1b: Levels 11 - 16 (blinds 6,000-12,000, ante 1,000)
Day 1b is complete - Terry Fan is the man to catch
We started out today with another 103 entrants and after seven hours of play we reduced that to our final seven players. With the 127 entrants from yesterday, it appears we are well on track to crack the magical 1,000-entrant mark, and smash the HK$1.5 million guarantee for this event.
The lucky seven from today are safely through to Day 2, with HK$8,000 in their back pocket, while the remainder will have the opportunity to return on Wednesday to try their luck again - some for the third time.
While the likes of Mikael Rosen, Kelly Flynn and Team PokerStars Pro Celina Lin failed to progress, the effervescent Victor Chen had no such problems on an incredible day that included big pots, plenty of boisterous celebration and even a straight-flush. However a late stumble by Chen against John Liang, saw Terry Fan power his way late in the day to bag up 251,000 for the chip lead. Here are the end of day chip counts:
Terry Fan (United States) - 251,000
Victor Chen (Taiwan) - 170,000
Paul Cottam (Australia) - 138,000
John Liang (United States) - 115,000
Fan Fang (China) - 96,000
Albert Kwan (Hong Kong) - 95,500
Nigel Jones (United Kingdom) - 37,500
That wraps up our coverage from the Grand Lisboa Casino for today. There is now a two-day break from the Main Event, with a couple of side events and a special PokerStars Home Game VIP cash game to keep the poker room ticking over. We'll be back on Wednesday at 8:10pm for Day 1c of the Macau Millions Main Event and we look forward to your company then!
9:00pm: Chi Keung Liu is the bubble boy as lucky seven is set
Chi Keung Liu moved all in from middle position for his last 35,000 or so chip, but Paul Cottam snap-called on the button. The rest of the table scurried away as Liu's J♦T♦ was in trouble against Cottam's Q♠Q♥.
The flop landed A♠Q♦6♠ to give Cottam a set, but it was a pretty good flop for Liu as he picked up four outs to win the pot. Needing a king to survive, he watched as the 3♣ turn and 8♥ river completed the board.
Liu will have to try his luck again in another flight as Cottam will enter Day 2 well placed.
8:45pm: Liang survives dramatic bubble all in
John Liang has survived the bubble in dramatic fashion as eight players still remain. Action folded to Liang on the button who moved all in for 48,900. Victor Chen soaked up a few moments of attention before making the call.
It was a great call as Chen showed A♦8♦ to be in dominant shape against Liang's A♥6♣. If you wanted an exciting flop for the bubble hand, it was the 5♦3♦4♠ one that arrived as Liang picked up a straight draw but lost a few outs with Chen having the flush draw. Liang clapped his hands in delight when the offsuit 7♥ hit the turn and suddenly he on the verge on a huge double up.
Chen was calling valiantly for a diamond but he received no help on the T♥ river as Liang doubled through to 100,000 with Chen back down to around 190,000.
8:40pm: Tsakmaklis eliminated
Paul Cottam opened with a raise on the button and Harold Tsakmaklis moved all in from the small blind for just 500 more. Cottam, of course, made the call with A♦9♦ as Tsakmaklis would need something special with his 8♥3♦. It wasn't to be as the board ran out Q♦6♦9♠7♠A♠ to give Cottam two pair and eliminate Tsakmaklis in 9th place.
With that elimination we're now on the bubble with eight players left.
8:30pm: Fang and Fan take out two
The players are now redrawing for the final table of nine after simultaneous eliminations. Xi Xu was finally removed by Fan Fang when his ace-queen made a flush against Xu's nine-six.
While it was a similar situation on the other table with Terry Fan's ace-queen held against a short stack pushing with ten-four. A queen on the flop was enough for Fan to take it down and move up to one of the big stacks.
We're now two more eliminations away from the top seven players and the money.
8:15pm: Xu crippled and tripled
Fan Fang has just landed a double up when he woke up with A♥A♠ in the big blind against the early position push of Xi Xu holding K♦2♦. The board ran out Q♠9♠T♥3♦5♠ and Fang doubled to leave Xu with just 9,000 and change.
Xu moved that change all in next hand from under the gun and found calls from Victor Chen in middle position and Albert Kwan in the big blind. The two live players checked down a board of 8♠Q♦5♥A♦J♣ but they couldn't better Xu's K♥J♦ as he rivered a pair to take it down. Kwan flashed jack-six and Chen held pocket fours. Xu is back to around 40,000.
The short stacks keep surviving here as 11 players are still remaining with the blinds now up to a lofty 4,000-8,000 with a 1,000 ante.
7:55pm: Another big one for Victor
Albert Kwan and Victor Chen have just tangled in a massive pot on table six with Chen getting the better to extend his tournament chip lead.
We arrived at the table with around 50,000 in the pot on a board of 2♦8♦J♠2♥, with Kwan checking it over to Chen, who slid in a bet of 60,000, leaving himself just 45,000 behind. This sent Kwan into the tank for several minutes before Danny McDonagh called the clock. Kwan eventually gave it up and tossed his cards to the dealer.
"If you show, I will show," said Chen and Kwan agreed as the dealer turned over his cards to reveal 9♣9♠. It was the right fold as Chen showed Q♣J♣ for top pair. Kwan slips to 70,000 with Chen up to 170,000.
7:35pm: Fan and Tsakmaklis moving up
Play has slowed up a little of the last level or so, with quite a few players taking their time over their decisions to slow the pace of the game. One player recently had the clock called, and timed out with his hand declared dead.
There are 14 players left with Terry Fan and Harold Tsakmaklis both responsible for the elimination of opponents recently.
Fan's K♦9♣ took care of a short stack holding Q♣J♦ on a board of 4♦7♦6♠8♣4♥, while Tsakmaklis eliminated Japan's Hirotoshi Nakabo with Tsakmaklis' ace-king holding against Nakabo's queen-jack on a T-3-3-9-6 board.
7:10pm: Chen KOs two more
Victor Chen has increased his chip lead after eliminating two players in a rather interesting and entertaining hand.
There were four limpers to Swede Thomas Martensson in the big blind who decided there was enough dead money out there to try and steal with his K♠4♣ as he moved all in for an additional 9,900. The under-the-gun player then decided to try and isolate with his A♦T♦ as he moved all in for 46,900 but Victor Chen was sitting with A♥K♥ and he made a huge call, having both players covered.
The players were on their feet with Chen screaming for his hand to hold as the board fell 7♣3♣7♠9♦J♣.
"Yes! Chip leader!" cried Chen as he moves up to 160,000 as we're now down to our final 18 players.
6:55pm: A thorn between two roses
Percy Yung has lost consecutive hands to be bundled out of the tournament, along with tablemate Tsz Yuen Cheung as Albert Kwan has double KO'd the two starlets from the tournament.
Yung first lost a small pot when she moved all in holding A♦9♠ and Cheung made a pot-committed call in the big blind for a few thousand more with 6♠8♥. An eight spiked on the river to have both ladies sitting with around 10,000 chips.
Yung decided to move those all in next hand with J♦T♥ and Cheung called off her chips in the small blind with A♥3♥ as Kwan decided the price was right with his K♣2♦ in the big blind.
The board ran out K♠4♦7♠3♣5♥ to give Kwan a pair of kings and eliminate two of our female players from the tournament as just 20 players now remain.
6:50pm: Fang finds a double
Fan Fang has found a double up after moving all in for his last 7,800 from early position with Q♦9♦ and finding a call from Tsz Yuen Cheung holding 7♠7♥.
A queen on the flop was what Fang wanted to see as the board was spread 3♥A♥Q♠A♦8♣. Fan doubles to 18,000 with Cheung down to her last 4,000 in change.
6:40pm: Play resumes
The final 26 players are back in action as Day 1b of the Macau Millions continues. Victor Chen is our chip leader with 100,000 while Chi Keung Liu is next best with about 85,000. There are plenty of short stacks who will be under pressure with the blinds up to 1,200-2,400 with an ante of 300.
We'll be playing this evening until we reach our final seven players.