Team PokerStars loaded the field in Day 1 of the PokerStars Asia Pacific Poker Tour, bringing in big names like Joe Hachem, Isabelle Mercier, Vanessa Rousso and Lee Nelson to join the 186-person field. Other notable stars from Asia and around the world included Bertrand ‘ElkY' Grospellier, Tuan Lam and Yosh Nakano.
The day started with a big hand, as Kazuhiro Sato doubled up on the first hand. When he hit middle set with on a flop of , he looked strong, but was in fact drawing to a miracle, as his opponent turned over for top set. The miracle hit on the turn when the landed, leaving his opponent drawing to one out. The case nine did not appear on the river, and Sato doubled up early. He rode that strong start all the way through Day 1, surviving into Day 2.
The early rounds were not as kind to Team PokerStars, as Vanessa Rousso and Tuan Lam headed to the rail early in Day 1. Rousso became the first of a string of players eliminated by Jacques Zaicik when her pocket fours were run down by Zaicik's . A Queen on the river sent Rousso packing. Lam was behind from the flop when his didn't hit the flop nearly as hard as Steven Gunter's . No Jack for Lam and he was gone early as well.
Lee Nelson and ElkY lasted longer than Rousso and Lam, but still busted well before play ended on Day 1. ElkY headed to the rail when his A-K was outdrawn by an opponent holding Q-10 who rivered a Broadway straight, and Nelson's Queens got cracked by Jacks to leave him on life support. A few hands later he got it all in with and missed the board, sending him to the rail with his fellow PokrStars sponsored players.
Joe Hachem carried the flag for Team PokerStars longer than most of his stablemates, but he went to the rail late in the day when he ran into Rousso's nemesis, Jacques Zaicik. The former World Champ shoved the remainder of his chips into the middle with pocket threes, and Zaicik's A-K won the coin flip when the hit the flop. Isabelle Mercier fared much better than the rest of Team PokerStars, finishing the day with a healthy chip stack going into Day 2.
Dan Schreiber finished the day with a monster chip stack, over 100K in chips and nearly double his nearest competitor. Schreiber busted Yosh Nakano when his hit the flop of and cracked Nakano's . Later he busted Kelly Flynn to cross the 100K mark when his out flopped Flynn's , sending Flynn to the rail.
48 players made it through Day 1, with the top ten chip stacks looking like this -
Dan Schreiber - 140,000
Jason Min - 87,000
Uwe Brauckhoff - 80,000
Roger Spets - 75,000
Zhiwei Ang - 68,000
Ziv Bachar - 62,000
Cory Ann Joseph - 60,000
Joe Berrec - 60,000
James Honeybone - 55,000
Nick Yamazaki - 46,000