With 22 left to start play yesterday at the Asia Championship of Poker Main Event, the day began with a virtual tie for the chip lead between the Aussie Michael Kanaan and Andrew Gaw of the Philippines, with the tough Canadian Mike Watson not too far off the pace in third position.
The day began predictably with some short stacks falling, others surviving and recovering, and the chip leaders continuing to thrive. Then Gaw saw his stack begin to deplete, and Watson abruptly lost nearly all of his to Kanaan in a major aces-versus-kings confrontation in which the Aussie had the better end of things.
Suddenly only one of our formerly leading trio was still thriving, with Watson soon to leave us in 12th, his fellow Canadian Tri Ba Huynh following him in 11th, and Gaw becoming the one to bubble the final table in 10th.
It had been a relatively short day of it, with the final nine departing for the night around 10 p.m. Here’s how their stacks appeared at the time, and what they’ll be unbagging for today’s 2 p.m. start:
1. Michael Kanaan (Australia) — 1,393,000
2. Tom Alner (U.K.) — 826,500
3. Andrew Hinrichsen (Australia) — 798,500
4. Tsugunari Toma (Japan) — 788,500
5. Xing Zhou (China) — 493,000
6. Henry Wang (Chinese Taipei) — 429,000
7. Ying Kit Chan (Hong Kong) — 348,000
8. Alan Sass (United States) — 252,000
9. Jacques Zaicik (France) — 191,000
For the last two weeks, players from around the world have come to Macau to participate in the Asia Championship of Poker’s wide range of different buy-in events. Indeed, the Main Event alone saw more than 30 countries represented among the starting field of 184. Thus is it no surprise to see such a varied group at the final table, with ages ranging from 24 to 60 and four different continents represented among them. For more about each of the final nine players, click here.
We’ll be locked in on how the ACOP Main Event plays out today, but there will be other side stories to consider as well as the series as a whole comes to an end, including the conclusions of…
— the $250,000 (HKD) “High Rollers” event
— the 2012 Asia Player of the Year race
— the “ACOP Million Dollar Challenge” between Team Hong Kong and Team Australia
In other words, there will be intrigue and drama playing out in every corner of the Grand Waldo Exhibition and Conference Centre today during the ACOP’s final day.
Check back here around 2 p.m. local time (GMT+8) for full coverage of the ACOP Main Event final table as well as look-ins along the way on these other final twists and turns of the ACOP story.
Martin Harris is Freelance Contributor to the PokerStars Blog.