179 top names from around the world descended on the Star City Hotel and Casino in Sydney for the PokerStars Asia Pacific Poker Tour Grand Final. Among the big names playing on Day 1a were Chris Moneymaker, Greg Raymer, Mel Judah, Mark Vos and local boy Eric Assadourian, who free rolled into this event after winning the APPT Macau High Rollers tournament last month.
Assadourian’s homecoming celebration didn’t last long, as he ran into a big hand that ended his tournament early. On a flop of , Assadourian called a bet from his opponent, and then fired at the on the turn. His opponent called, and when Assadourian fired again on the river, his opponent called yet again. Assadourian revealed for top pair, but was behind from the flop as his opponent tabled for two pair. Assadourian held on for a few more hands, but was eliminated shortly afterwards.
It was a rough day for World Champions, as both Chris Moneymaker and Greg Raymer went to the rail on Day 1a. Raymer busted when he tried to make a move on Lei He went busted with a gut shot straight draw, and he got called with flopped trip Queens. Moneymaker got nothing going all day and finally got all his money in the middle in a three-way pot. Unfortunately one opponent held Queens and another held Jacks. The Queens held up and Moneymaker was eliminated. Other notable players eliminated on Day 1a included Mark Vos, Mel Judah, Raymond Rahme and Tino Lechich.
Terrence Chan went on a heater on Day 1a, finishing the day near the top of the leader board. The young Team PokerStars player took down his first live tournament win this week and parlayed that success into newfound confidence at the tables. In one pivotal pot, Chan fired a bet on the flop of and was raised by one opponent. Chan called, and both players checked the turn of the . Chan’s opponent fired at the river , and Chan raised. Chan tabled his for second pair and his opponent mucked.
Chan spent most of the latter stages of Day 1a passing the chip lead back and forth with Grant Levy, but is was Davoud Khajeh who took the top spot as play ended for the day. Here are the top ten chip stacks at the end of Day 1a:
Davoud Khajeh – 297,600
Jason Lien – 278,200
Terrence Chan – 253,200
Lei He – 241,100
Michael Zowie – 228,100
Joseph Loruzzo – 194,200
Grant Levy – 173,000
Karib Karib – 155,400
John Donahue – 145,200
Luigi Apreda – 130,800
With even more stars set to take the field on Day 1b, including the ever-entertaining Scotty Nguyen, the action at Poker City Hotel is sure to stay hopping! Check back here for all your updates!