10:30pm: Day 1b concludes with Kamel Mokhammad likely chip leader
We’re waiting on confirmation but it looks like our chip leader from earlier Kamel Mokhammad has maintained his lead right through to the conclusion of play.
The exact counts of both chip stacks and players remaining are just being calculated now.
We’ll have everything you need to know as soon as we can. Stay with us!
10:20pm: Final seven hands
PokerStars LIVE Macau’s Rex Cheong just gave presumed chip leader Kamel Mokhammad the honour of drawing to see how many hands remain in the night.
Mokhammad pulled the card to signify that only seven more hands will be played. Stay tuned as we draw to a close.
10:05pm: The floodgates are open
It’s the final level of the night now and the eliminations are flying thick and fast as the shortstacks attempt to either double up or go home before chips are bagged for the night.
We seem to have lost Chen Hao and Alex Ward as the night dwindles on. Also absent from her seat and nowhere to be seen is Kitty Kuo.
On the other end of the spectrum at the moment it looks like Ukraine’s Kamel Mokhammad has worked his way into the chip lead. Mokhammad has just eclipsed the 200,000 chip mark. It’s not long now until we see if he can hold that lead through to the close of play or whether another player will take the top spot in the dying stages.
9:40pm: Back to back three-bets for Ichinose
It seems Team PokerStars Pro Kosei Ichinose is ramping up the pressure on those who are trying to sneak through to Day 2. He just took down two consequent pots with preflop reraises.
The first saw the player in the hijack seat raise to 3,200 before Ichinose bumped it up to 8,300 on the button. The three-bet prompted his opponent to muck and the Team Pro collected the pot.
The very next hand a player raised to 3,500 under the gun and Ichinose three-bet to 8,500. This sent his opponent deep into the tank as he checked and rechecked his cards. After a few minutes the clock was called and the player was informed he has one minute to act on his hand.
About 30 seconds went by and the cards were tossed away as Ichinose added even more chips to his stack.
9:25pm: Henrik hits the rail
Henrik Tollefsen’s stack had been beginning to dwindle and he couldn’t keep his tournament alive with only an hour left before the conclusion of Day 1b.
Tollefsen moved all in from early position for his final 20,200 and the action folded around to the player on the button. Motioning his hands to form a triangle the player announced he was all in and with the rest of the table out of the way the two tabled their hands.
Chasing a three to stay in it Tollefsen couldn’t find one on the 2♦5♠7♦5♣8♣ run out. He leaves us just shy of qualifying for the official Day 2.
9:10pm: Level 11 begins, blinds are 800/1,600 with a 200 ante
9:00pm: The home stretch
Only 90 minutes remain in this Day 1 flight.
It’s been an action-packed affair and 359 have been whittled down to 126 so far.
Included in those still in contention are Team PokerStars Pro Kosei Ichinose (34,000), Kitty Kuo (28,600), Alex Ward (27,000) and Henrik Tollefsen (20,200).
Who will push through in the dying stages of the night to claim the top spot on Day 1b? Stay with us here on the PokerStars Blog to find out.
8:45pm: Ward wipes out a shortstack
The action folded around to Alex Ward in the small blind and seeing that his opponent in the big blind was super short, he slid in enough to cover the effective 5,000 in chips.
The big blind turned up A♠4♥ and announced call only to see that Ward had him dominated with A♥Q♠.
The 10♠2♦10♥ flop brought some potential chopportunities but the 10♣ turn and 6♣ river saw Ward’s ace-queen high hold to eliminate his opponent.
That hand brings Ward’s stack up to 27,000.
8:30pm: Level 10 begins, blinds are 600/1,200 with a 200 ante
8:20pm: Last break of the night
The remaining players have just commenced their final 10-minute break of the night. Play will resume momentarily.
8:10pm: Big fold for Ichinose
Team PokerStars Pro Kosei Ichinose was just put to the test.
He opened the betting to 2,500 before it folded around to a player in middle position. The player opted to push all in for a total of around 18,000 before the decision was back on Ichinose.
The Team Pro deliberated on how to react to the 18 big blind jam but after a few moments he announced fold and showed 10♠10♣.
Some of his tablemates looked shocked but Ichinose will live to fight another hand.
7:55pm: Room bustling as HK$5,000 event begins
Admittedly the buzz in the poker room had begun to die down after we’d lost over half our starting field, but now the room is packed out once more with players registering for the HK$5,000 NLH which kicks off in five minutes time.
One man taking part is Malaysia’s Victor Chong who managed to scrape through to Day 2 of the Red Dragon last night. He finished second-last in chips at the conclusion of play, bagging up 19,700.
3rd event of the new year, #MPC24 $5K Hyper Turbo
— Victor Chong (@vicyafos) February 29, 2016
Also responsible for part of the resurgence in atmosphere is the HK$15,000 PLO event which is drawing close to a final table.
US pro Scott Davies was the last entrant into the event and still remains despite joining the field with half the average stack.
— Scott Davies (@sdaviespoker) February 29, 2016
And back to our Red Dragon Main Event, approximately 160 players still remain. Let’s see who can survive the night and qualify for the official Day 2.
7:40pm: Level 9 begins, blinds are 500/1,000 with a 100 ante
7:30pm: Tollefsen takes one
We arrived just in time to see what looked like a preflop three-bet from Henrik Tollefsen, who had 4,200 in chips sitting in front of him. He and one other player went to the flop of 7♠A♦J♥.
Both of them quickly checked before the dealer burned and turned the 5♣. Again the action went check-check and the 4♠ landed on the river.
Tollefsen’s opponent checked a third time but the Norwegian decided to fire at it. He led out for 4,000, sending the other player into the tank.
Clearly tormented by the decision, he took his time looking to the ceiling and then counting out his stack. The player ultimately mucked and Tollefsen added the pot to the 13,000 he had behind.
The 2014 Macau Millions champion Chen Hao is here today and seems to be picking his spots well despite nursing a short stack.
After a limp and a consequent raise to 2,200, Hao next to act moved in for his last 9,900. The limper got out of the way and the decision was back on the raiser. He momentarily looked like he was going to call after cutting out the chips for it but eventually threw his cards away.
Hao flashed Q♥Q♦ and his opponent looked pretty happy that he did.
7:00pm: Level 8 begins, blinds are 400/800 with a 100 ante
6:50pm: Kosei cruising
Kosei Ichinose may be the only Team PokerStars Pro in the poker room tonight but he’s flying the flag high and continuing to chip up.
We caught a recent hand with the board reading 5♥K♦8♠ and Ichinose checking from the big blind. His opponent fired for 1,100 and Ichinose made the call. The dealer turned the K♥ and Ichinose checked again.
Then faced with a bet of 1,350, Ichinose bumped it up to 4,500. His opponent smiled and gave it up to see the Team Pro collect another pot.
That hand means Ichinose climbs to 27,000 in chips.
6:35pm: Hachem can’t hold on
We reportedly recently that 2005 WSOP Main Event Joe Hachem was on the short stack and in need some help but unfortunately for the Australian his Red Dragon dream is over tonight.
Hachem bled down to 3,800 before pushing it all in the middle from early position. The player to his direct left called to put him at risk and then a third party moved all in over the top for 10,200.
The initial caller went into the tank and counted out his chips before committing the extra 6,400 and the three players turned their hands up.
Hachem needed a lot of help holding A♠2♣ against the 3♣3♥ of the player to his left and the A♦Q♣ of the third runner. The 7♦J♣K♣ did nothing to lift his spirits and the 3♦ turn signalled Hachem was drawing dead.
“Yes!” shouted the player who had turned a set before his hand held through the J♠ river and he administered a double elimination.
6:20pm: Level 7 begins, blinds are 300/600 with a 75 ante
6:10pm: Take a break
The remaining players have stepped away for a 10-minute break.
6:00pm: Chip counts before break
The chip stacks around the room vary from mountains to molehills.
Here’s how some of our notable players stack up.
Carl Carlsson – 40,000
Kitty Kuo – 26,200
Kosei Ichinose – 22,000
Henrik Tollefsen – 13,300
Joe Hachem – 6,600
With the blinds going up to 300/600 (75) after the break, Hachem will be nursing a shortstack and looking to double up. We’ll be keeping an eye out to see if he can score himself that double or if he finds the exit here on Day 1b.
More and more players are exiting the tournament here on Day 1b including some of the familiar faces we had in attendance.
It appears Australian Daniel Laidlaw has left us here today. So too has Tatiana Barausova. The latter made a final table appearance in January’s Macau Millions Main Event but won’t be able to muster another impressive finish here this week.
Another elimination today was that of US pro Russell Thomas. It seems he has encountered somewhat of a nemesis here in Macau as his tweet explained.
guy who busts me day 2 of the 3k shoving 23 blinds with J3o over my sb open also busts me in the main backraising AA into my AK. wtf
— Russell Thomas (@RunGoodRussell) February 29, 2016
5:30pm: Level 6 begins, blinds are 200/400 with a 50 ante
5:20pm: Field Update
We’re approaching the halfway mark here on Day 1b so let’s take a look at the player numbers.
Yesterday’s field of 205 has well and truly been blown out of the water. Day 1b has already attracted 353 players to PokerStars LIVE Macau. We still have approximately an hour left of late registration so while it might be unlikely, it’s not unheard of that the number could grow even further.
We’ve already lost an estimated 83 of our starting field today. That means 270 will continue into the second half of the day.
Stay with us as Day 1b continues into the night.
5:05pm: Kicker problems
Henrik Tollefsen just lost a pot after bricking a world of outs.
We missed some of the action but Tollefsen was in the big blind with 7♦6♦ and saw a flop of 8♠8♦5♦.
The Norwegian had flopped an open-ended straight flush draw and even improved to two-pair when the 7♣ turn arrived.
The 6♠ brought him an irrelevant three pair and he saw the bad news when his opponent tabled 10♠7♠ for the same two pair but with a one-better kicker.
Tollefsen has already seen great success here in Macau previously. He shipped the Macau Poker Cup High Roller in 2014 and emerged victorious in the 2013 APT Macau Main Event.
We’ll be keeping an eye on him this week to see if another deep run is on the cards.
4:50pm: Level 5 begins, blinds are 150/300 with a 25 ante
4:40pm: Early eliminations
We recently noticed that Juicy Li was no longer in her seat. One of the photographers informed us that she had previously been eliminated and won’t be making a deep run in the Red Dragon this week.
Another one to fall by the wayside in the early stages here was Lacey Jones. Unfortunaley we missed the action but Jones took to Twitter to update here followers.
That feeling you get when you know you’re ahead, but they hit their gut shot anyway. AQ<QJ GG #MPC24
— Lacey Jones (@LaceyJones) February 29, 2016
4:25pm: Ichinose lone Team Pro; chipping up
We were thinking maybe we wouldn’t see any Team PokerStars Pros in the building today, but Japan’s Kosei Ichinose has turned up and is already building a stack.
After a player raised to 475 preflop, Ichinose made it 1,400 to go from the hijack seat. The player on the dealer button cold-called and the initial raiser came along to see a flop of 10♣J♥9♥.
It was checked to Ichinose and he continued for 2,500. The button called but the initial raiser folded before the A♠ turn rolled off. Both players then checked it through to the J♦ river.
Ichinose took the opportunity to bet 6,000 and the decision fell to the button, who was clearly annoyed at the predicament. Checking his cards and screwing up his face he tossed his hand into the muck and Ichinose collected the pot.
With that hand the Team Pro climbs to around 20,000 in chips.
4:00pm: Scheduled break
Players have left the tournament area for a 10-minute break.
3:50pm: Broadway for Kuo
After a preflop raise from Kitty Kuo, Nan Zhao made the call and players saw a flop of 10♦3♣A♥.
Kuo continued for 450 and was called before the A♦ turn paired the board. Both players checked and the Q♥ arrived on the river.
The river prompted Kuo to bet again and she fired for 1,400 in chips. Zhao flicked in a call and saw the bad news as Kuo tabled K♠J♦ for a rivered Broadway straight.
3:35pm: A packed out room as more notables take their seats
“It’s a full house” said APPT President Danny McDonagh over the microphone.
“We’ve got 32 hold’em tables running, four for the PLO and the cash games are filling up” he said.
“A special thanks to Joe Hachem who has just arrived. He’s the man behind the successful PLO tournament here” McDonagh continued.
Speaking of course about 2005 WSOP Main Event champion, Hachem has now taken his seat among today’s Red Dragon field.
Joining him as late arrivals are prominent US pro Russell Thomas and the always entertaining Kitty Kuo. Kuo recently finished in sixth place at the Aussie Millions Main Event for $189,018 and will be chasing another huge score here this week.
3:20pm: Level 3 begins, blinds are 100/200
3:10pm: Chen and Mak chop it up
We arrived at the table to see the board reading 8♥10♥K♣7♣ and Guangcheng Chen firing 500 after a check from Anthony Mak.
Mak then raised it up to 1,500 and when Chen called they saw the 6♥ river roll off.
Leading again for 1,500 Mak was met with a raise from Chen to 3,500. He quickly called with A♠9♠ for a straight and effectively the same hand as Chen’s 10♠9♦.
“Chop chop!” Chen exclaimed as the dealer began to push the pot to Mak. Realising her mistake she divided the chips up and split them evenly between the two players.
2:55pm: Limp works for Lacey
Lacey Jones has started the day with a small boost to her stack after a preflop limp and some post flop aggression.
Jones limped from an early position before Han Shao next to act followed suit. Jingyuan Li completed from the small blind and Yi Han checked his option before a flop of A♦2♠3♦.
The action checked to Jones who led for 225. Shao called but the other two mucked their hands as the dealer turned the 8♠.
Jones fired again, this time for 500, which was enough to win the pot as Shao gave it up.
2:30pm: Wang wins one
Yuping Wang just took some chips from Tsz Yeung Ka.
Players were three handed to the flop of J♦5♠9♠ where Wang led for 650 in chips. Ka made the call, and with the player on the button out of the way players saw the 10♣ turn.
Wang slowed down with a check to Ka who took the betting lead with a wager of 1,500. After a call from Wang the dealer flipped up the 10♠ river.
Both players quickly checked and Wang tabled K♥10♦ for the winner.
Ka shook his head as the pot was pushed to Wang.
2:15pm: A growing field and a few familiar faces
Things are only just beginning here this afternoon and already we’ve smashed yesterday’s field size. Day 1a saw 205 in attendance and only 15 minutes into Day 1b we have 289 players at the tables. With a line still at the registration desk we are expecting that number to climb even further as the day progresses.
Of those 289 in their seats we’ve spotted a couple of familiar faces. Australia’s Daniel Laidlaw is here, as is poker personality Lacey Jones. Also spotted was China’s Sixiao ‘Juicy’ Li.
We’ve yet to see any Team PokerStars Pros among the field yet. Perhaps they’ll make use of late registration or appear tomorrow for the final Day 1 flight.
MPC24 Red Dragon Day 1b begins soon
It’s time for the second Day 1 flight of the Macau Poker Cup 24’s feature tournament – The Red Dragon!
The poker room here is already filling up with players preparing to make a run at that prestigious title and impressive trophy. We’ll be kicking off today’s proceedings at 2:00pm but you can read all about Day 1a yesterday right here.
China’s Chao Yang set the benchmark yesterday by emerging as chip later late in the day. He bagged up 168,700 in chips at the conclusion of play and time will tell if that number can be bested here on Day 1b.
Once again we’ll be following all the action from the tables today. Be sure to keep your browser locked to the PokerStars blog for all the live updates!
All photos by Kenneth Lim Photography courtesy of PokerStars LIVE Macau