It’s been a case of mixed fortunes for PokerStars Sponsored players Elton Tsang and Van Marcus in the past hour.
Born in Canada but now established as one of the prime movers in the local poker industry, Tsang has steadily picked his way through the field but consolidated his position with a quality call when his opponent check-raised all-in on a board of 9c-Js-Qh.
After a long deliberation, Tsang made the call and showed Ks-Jc for middle-pair and an inside straight draw while his opponent showed 4d-10h for an open-ended straight draw. A pair of bricks (2s and 6d) fell on the turn and river, delivering Tsang his biggest pot of the day.
But the day is over for PokerStars Sponsored player Van Marcus after he found himself all-in against Johnny Chan, who’d recently arrived at table four along with David Steicke.
The board came 7c-8c-3s-2c-8s, giving Chan (7h-8h) top two-pair and ending the challenge of Marcus, who held 9c-10h for a busted open-ended straight draw.
Steicke has just taken down a big pot against David Saab to take over the top of the chip count on a relatively modest 46,000 (we’re yet to see any player skip clear of the field today).
Coincidentally, Mansour Matloubi has just joined table 4 and is seated next to Johnny Chan. Two years after Chan won his second WSOP main event bracelet, the Iranian-born Welshman Mansour Matloubi and Hans ‘Tuna’ Lund played one of the most exciting hands in WSOP history at the final table of the 1990 event.
With more than $1.6 million in the pot (the biggest in tournament history), Matloubi pushed all-in with pocket 10s on a flop of 9 2 4, only to be called by Lund (holding A 9). An ace on the turn made Lund a huge favourite until Matloubi hit his two-outer – a 10. The Welshman went on to win the first prize of USD $895,000.
Other players sent to the rail so far today have included Emanuel ‘Curly’ Seal, Mel Judah (providing life support for the stack of Team PokerStars Pro Bertrand ‘ElkY’ Grospellier), Sydney’s Zhi Hong Ma, Yevgeniy Timoshenko, Henrik Gwinner, Julian Powell and Dan Alspach.