After three days of play, the ANZPT Sydney Main Event has been reduced from a starting field of 458 to a final table of nine. Let’s get to know our final table a little better:
Seat 1: Peco Stojanovski (Sydney, New South Wales) – 1,167,000 chips
Peco Stojanovski is 39-year old local player who has nine years experience in the game. During that time, Peco has amassed some impressive results, mostly here at his home casino of The Star. His biggest result came back in 2010 when he placed fourth in the APPT Sydney for $121,380 in prize money. Peco also finished in 23rd place in the ANZPT Sydney event back in 2012.
Peco likes to call himself “The Magician” and so far he’s been able to work his magic beautifully, describing a “sick call, then a sick three-barrel bluff against Alex Lee” as his highlight of the tournament so far.
Peco loves Sydney and would love nothing more than to capture his home town title.
Seat 2: Nathan Sawyers (Sydney, New South Wales) – 1,318,000 chips
Nathan Sawyers is a 35-year old Car Dealership Owner from Sydney who has been playing poker for ten years after getting started in the pub poker ranks. Nathan has a number of small cashes to his credit, mostly at The Star, but this will be his best poker result regardless of where he finishes on the final table.
Nathan’s rise to the second largest stack on the final table has been an adventurous one. With just minutes left on day one, Nathan was down to just 6,000 in chips. But he was able to double up several times before the end of the day, and from there he never looked back.
Away from poker, Nathan enjoys golf, the gym and boating on Sydney harbour.
Seat 3: Josh Redhouse (Spring Farm, New South Wales) – 994,000 chips
Josh Redhouse is a 27-year old Sales Manager who claims on his bio sheet that this is his first time playing poker. Somehow we think he might be bluffing. It is certainly Josh’s first major tournament result.
Josh rose to the chip lead late on Day 3 when he five-bet preflop with pocket fours and flopped a set. From there, he was able to hang on to reach the final table.
Josh is a keen golfer and has enjoyed having the support of his mates and girlfriend on the rail throughout the Main Event.
Seat 4: Milan Gurung (Melbourne, Victoria) – 283,000 chips
Arguably one of the more experienced players on this final table, Milan Gurung is a 35-year old with almost $300,000 in live earnings to his credit. Despite hailing from Melbourne, Milan clearly has a liking for the harbour city with his previous best two tournament results coming at the Sydney Poker Championships Main Event. In 2009, Milan took third place before improving to second place in 2010 for a $86,576 score. He’ll be hoping to go one place better again here at the ANZPT Sydney.
Milan says his poker highlight was playing with Phil Ivey in the Aussie Millions Main Event. Hopefully he learnt a few tricks that he can use on this final table as he enters as the short stack of the field.
Seat 5: Jazz Mathers (Sydney, New South Wales) – 1,837,000 chips
The man with the coolest name in all of poker, Jazz Mathers has been a dominant force in this event and he’ll carry the chip lead into the final table. Jazz is a 26-year old “Advertising Boss” with a previous best result of 9th place at the APPT Melbourne for $16,650. He’s already guaranteed to better than prize here in Sydney.
That event was won by Billy Argyros, and the two reacquainted themselves here in Sydney. A key moment in Mathers’ tournament was calling off most of his chips with ace-high to pick off a big bluff from the Croc on day one.
Away from poker, Jazz enjoys sport, golf prop betting and partying, so expect some celebrations if he’s victorious on this final table.
Seat 6: Yibo “Steven” Zhou (Beijing, China) – 1,117,000 chips
Steven Zhou is our lone international representative at this final table with the 26-year old hailing from Beijing in China. Steven has been playing poker for only a couple of years but has already amassed an impressive poker resume that includes a number of small cashes here in Sydney and a couple of significant scores in Macau. Steven finished in 6th place in the 2013 ACOP Warm-up event for $46,167 and runner-up in the recent Macau Poker Cup Baby Dragon event for $29,660.
Steven says he first got into poker when his Probability Lecturer suggested that learning the odds in Texas Holdem would be helpful for the course. Well, it will prove very helpful if Steven can turn that knowledge into $225,300 at this final table!
Away from the felt, Steven enjoys golf, travel and foods and says that he’s most enjoyed making use of the massage therapists during the event.
Seat 7: Rory Young (Sydney, New South Wales) – 1,124,000 chips
The baby of the group, Rory Young is a tender 18-year old who says he was introduced to poker just three months ago by Shivine Abdine. He already has a couple of small results to his credit at The Star and will be looking for a big score to kick start his poker career here on the final table.
Rory has provided plenty of friendly banter at the table, and may provide some entertaining moments with a couple other chatty players on this final table.
Seat 8: Oliver Gill (Magnetic Island, Queensland) – 536,000 chips
The effervescent Oliver Gill is a 28-year old professional poker player and our lone Queenslander on the final table. Oliver is best known for his excessive table talk but he also poses an impressive poker resume with almost $200,000 in live earnings and over $1.1 million in winnings on PokerStars, including victories in the Bigger 162 and Sunday Second Chance tournaments.
Oliver says that his biggest influences in poker have been Callum Ford, Josh Budin and Jordan Drummond, with his personal highlight in poker coming at the WSOP where he was able to get a Russian opponent so angry that he scrunched up his cards and threw them at the dealer…twice.
Oliver just has that affect on people. Love him or hate him, he talks the talk, and now he’s starting to also walk the walk. Look out if he wins this today!
Seat 9: Brent Taunton (Moree, New South Wales) – 637,000 chips
Brent Taunton is a 31-year old Farmer with a solid ten years experience playing poker after getting started in home games.
Brent enjoys tournaments and has a few nice scores to his credit including a runner-up result in the 2011 Gold Coast Poker Championships for $39,000.
The defining moment in this tournament for Brent was when he flopped a set of jacks against Daniel Neilson’s flopped flush. Brent was able to improve to a full house on the river to remove a big threat and get himself right into contention for a run at the final table.
Heath “TassieDevil” Chick is a Freelance Contributor for the PokerStars Blog.