Ying Lin Chua wins! (HK$1,904,000*)
It’s all over here!
Ying Chua has overcome a field of 1,075 players to become champion of the biggest Red Dragon event ever. Chua guaranteed himself the lion’s share of prize money during the three-way deal and added a bonus HK$300,000 and a $100,000 ACOP Main Event ticket for the victory.
We’ll have a full summary of how Chua navigated the final table to win the championship soon. Stay tuned to the PokerStars Blog.
It looked like Wayne Zhang may have had a decent shot at making a comeback in the heads up match only 10 minutes into the battle it’s all over here.
Zhang was all in preflop and dominated by Ying Lin Chua’s hand.
Both players hit top pair on the 3♥J♣2♠ flop but Zhang was still in danger of elimination with his inferior kicker. The K♣ turn couldn’t help him and the A♠ completed the board to end the tournament.
Zhang collects HK$1,307,000 for his impressive finish after the three-handed deal.
As our two remaining players were being reintroduced to the poker room over the microphone, Ying Lin Chua announced that he would be all in blind the first hand of heads up play. It was allowed as he was on the button and he pushed a tower of chips forward to signify his intentions.
The cards were dealt and Wayne Zhang slammed in the chips for a snap-call after looking down at A♠J♠. He was ahead of Chua’s K♣4♦ and held on the 8♦6♠6♦A♦8♠ runout to double up and have a shot at taking down the title.
12:00am: Heads up set
Heads up play is about to begin. Ying Lin Chua is in a prime position to win this Red Dragon event with a 10:1 chip leader over Wayne Zhang but anything could happen!
Chua – 14,675,000
Zhang – 1,420,000
Let’s see how it ends!
11:55pm: Takashi Ogura eliminated in 3rd place (HK$1,382,000*)
Many would’ve expected Wayne Zhang to be our third place finisher after he was knocked down to only two big blinds recently, but in a shock turn around it was Japan’s Takashi Ogura who was the next to exit.
Ogura was all in preflop holding K♥J♥ against chip leader Ying Lin Chua’s A♣2♦.
He had lives cards but by the turn on a 6♦Q♣2♥2♠ board Ogura was already drawing dead to Chua’s trip deuces.
Ogura takes home HK$1,382,000 after the three-handed deal.
11:40pm: 10-minute break
Players have stepped away again for a 10-minute break.
Zhang managed to run his two big blinds up to a modest 10 but still remains our short stack.
Here’s how the three remaining players’ stacks look.
Ying Lin Chua – 10,580,000
Takashi Ogura – 3,935,000
Wayne Zhang – 1,580,000
11:30pm: Zhang crippled
Ying Lin Chua moved all in from the small blind with just enough to cover Wayne Zhang in the big blind. Zhang went into the tank before slamming in some chips to signify a call.
Zhang had the lead and improved to top pair on the 10♥7♥3♠ flop. The J♠ turn brought Chua a world of outs, however, and the surrounding crowd let out a communal gasp. Zhang needed to fade an ace, king, queen, nine or spade to avoid sending most of his chips Chua’s way. The 5♠ river didn’t oblige as Chua made a flush to rake the monster pot.
Zhang’s slang is now decimated with only 315,000, or roughly two big blinds, in play.
11:20pm: We have a deal!
Players have agreed to a three-way ICM chop, with the eventual winner taking home and additional HK$300,000, a HK$100,000 ACOP Main Event seat and the prestigious Red Dragon trophy!
Here’s what our three remaining players have all guaranteed themselves;
Ying Lin Chua – HK$1,504,000
Takashi Ogura – HK$1,382,000
Wayne Zhang – HK$1,307,000
Let’s see how things play out from here!
11:00pm: Second try at deal talks
With stacks getting closer to even here now the tournament clock has been paused again for the three remaining players to discuss a deal.
Here’s how their stacks look at the moment.
Ying Lin Chua – 6,490,000
Takashi Ogura – 5,155,000
Wayne Zhang – 4,450,000
10:45pm: Zhang finds a double through Ogura
Wayne Zhang moved all in for just over 2 million on the button and chip leader Takashi Ogura called from the small blind to put Zhang at risk.
Zhang was behind but had live cards and the 3♥7♦J♣ flop brought a little extra hope with a gut shot straight draw. The 3♠ turn card changed nothing but Zhang would spike a pair on the 10♦ river to stay alive and double through.
The crowd cheered for Zhang’s good fortune as he climbed to 4,400,000 in chips. That hit to Ogura’s stack means that Ying Lin Chua is now the chip leader with 6,200,000.
10:30pm: Play slows again
Things have slowed down again in this three handed battle.
Ogura is still our chip leader and but the chips are just moving back and forward at this stage.
10:20pm: River saves Ogura; new chip leader
We were one card away from entering heads up but much to the delight of Takashi Ogura that’s been delayed for now.
After he opened on the button for 350,000 Wayne Zhang moved all in from the big blind with enough to cover Ogura. The latter called off for his last 3,515,000 to find out he was flipping for his tournament life.
It was a fair fight and Ogura needed to improve to have a chance at taking home the title. The 4♥J♥4♦ flop and 8♦ didn’t give him anything to be excited about, but the K♠ river paired Ogura and sent a roar of applause across the room.
Ogura high-fived his supporters on the rail as he locked up the chip lead once more.
“Takashi, I folded a king” Ying Lin Chuo added as the pot was pushed Ogura’s way.
The hand saw Ogura climb to 7,400,000 and knocked Zhang back down to 4,300,000.
10:05pm: Level 31 begins, blinds are 80,000/160,000 with a 20,000 ante
9:50pm: Zhang clenches chip lead
It seems Wayne Zhang’s decision to decline a deal is paying off so far. In a spate of recent hands he has effectively positioned himself as the three-handed chip leader with 6.5 million.
In the hand just gone Zhang put the pressure on Chua and it paid off. On a flop of 6♣7♠10♣ Chua check-called a bet of 300,000 to see a turn of 10♦ where he checked again. Zhang continued the aggression for 625,000 and Chua was forced to lay down his hand.
9:35pm: No deal!
Talks of a deal have been cut short as Wayne Zhang has declared he won’t be accepting one.
We continue the action with 30 minutes left of Level 30. Blinds are 60,000/120,000 with a 20,000 ante.
Here’s how our final three look in the chips standings.
Ying Lin Chua – 6,465,000
Takashi Ogura – 4,980,000
Wayne Zhang – 4,650,000
9:30pm: Tournament clock paused as players discuss deal
Play has not yet recommenced after break as the final three players are in talks of a deal.
9:20pm: Take a break
The three remaining players have just begun another 10-minute break.
9:05pm: Liang Xu eliminated in 4th place (HK$611,000)
Four-handed play last for over two hours but now we’re three-handed at last.
Liang Xu is currently heading to the payout desk after getting his last 1,700,000 in preflop.
The hand began with Takashi Ogura raising to 250,000 before Xu moved all in over the top. Ying Lin Chua was next to act and he too pushed all his chips in, and with Ogura out of the way the cards went on their backs.
Xu was dominated and while the 2♦7♥7♦ improved his chances for a chopped pot, the 8♦ turn and 5♦ river meant he’d leave us in 4th place.
Now that we’re four-handed here things have slowed drastically.
The average stack is 4,031,250 with blinds at 60,000/120,000 and a 20,000 ante.
Japan’s Takashi Ogura still leads the way with 5.8 million ahead of Wayne Zhang who has climbed to 5.3 million.
8:35pm: Level 29 begins, blinds are 60,000/120,000 with a 20,000 ante
8:20pm: Lucky king sees Zhang stay alive
Wayne Zhang was just all in preflop and at risk against Ying Lin Chua.
Zhang needed a king to stay alive and found one on the K♣8♣J♠. The K♦ on the turn meant he had a lock on the hand before the inconsequential 7♣ rolled off on the river.
That hand sees Zhang climb to 2,300,000 in chips.
Liang Xu just doubled up through Takashi Ogura after a preflop confrontation.
Xu called off for his tournament life with 8♠8♦ and was in good shape against Ogura’s A♠2♠.
Ogura found a pair on the 2♥9♥9♦ but it wasn’t enough as the Q♦ turn and J♣ river completed the board.
Xu let out a big cheer as he locked up the 4,200,000 chip pot.
After that setback, Ogura is still the chip leader but remains only narrowly ahead of Ying Lin Chua.
7:45pm: Ogura new chip leader after huge pot
Takashi Ogura just propelled himself into the chip lead at the detriment of tablemate Liang Xu.
Ogura raised to 225,000 on the button before Xu played back at him for 530,000. Ogura called and they went to a flop of Q♥9♦2♥. Xu continued for 500,000 and Ogura moved all his chips into the middle.
Xu gave it considerable thought before committing to a call with A♦9♠ for second pair. He was in front but very vulnerable to the K♥10♥ Ogura held for a big combo draw.
That draw came in on the A♥ turn and while Xu had four outs to take the lead with a full house, he couldn’t find one on the Q♣ river.
That hands skyrockets Ogura into the lead with 7,400,000 in chips.
7:30pm: Updated chip counts
Ying Lin Chua – 5,170,000
Liang Xu – 4,920,000
Wayne Zhang – 3,660,000
Takashi Ogura – 3,345,000
7:20pm: Level 28 begins, blinds are 50,000/100,000 with a 10,000 ante
7:10pm: Scheduled break
Only four players remain as we commence a 10-minute break. Coverage will resume momentarily.
6:55pm: Chengbei Lei eliminated in 5th place (HK$413,000)
We didn’t have to wait long for Chengbei Lei to follow our 6th place finisher out the door.
Lei moved all in from under the gun for his last 640,000 and again was called by Liang Xu and Ying Lin Chua. Lei hit what looked like a dream flop of 5♦3♥6♥ holding the A♥4♥, but saw that he needed help after Xu check-folded for a mere 100,000 and Chua tabled 2♠4♠ for a flopped straight.
Still alive to hearts or a deuce or seven for a chop, the Q♦ turn and 6♦ river wouldn’t cooperate as Lei was sent packing. He earns himself HK$413,000.
It’s been over 90 minutes since our last elimination but we finally lost another player with Fan Xie exiting in 6th place.
Xie found herself all in holding 7♦6♠ on a flop of 7♠4♠4♣ but she was drawing thin against Liang Xu’s 5♠4♦ flopped trips.
Chasing a seven or running cards to stay alive Xie couldn’t do it as the J♣ turn and 3♥ river made her elimination official.
For her efforts here this week Xie scores herself HK$302,100.
Chengbei Lei’s chip stack has been ebbing and flowing on this final table but he just found a triple up after getting his chips all in against two opponents.
Ying Lin Chua opened the betting to 180,000 and Lei moved all in over the top for 720,000. Liang Xu made the call in the big blind and Chua also committed the chips. The two active players quickly checked down as the board fell 2♠2♣A♥6♣8♣ and Lei tabled Q♥Q♦.
Xu and Chua couldn’t beat it holding 7♠7♣ and 5♠5♥ respectively and 2,300,000 in chips was pushed Lei’s way.
6:15pm: Xie doubles through Chua
Fan Xie found herself all in and at risk preflop against the chip leader Ying Lin Chua.
It was a coinflip with Xie holding 4♥4♦ versus Chua’s A♠K♦ and she faded danger on the 9♣Q♦6♦ flop. The 10♣ turn brought a Broadway sweat but the 5♦ river bricked off to secure Xie’s double up.
Her fans on the rail cheered as Xie climbed to around 1.5 million in chips.
6:05pm: Rollercoaster for Chengbei Lei
Chengbei Lei just lost a big chunk of his stack before doubling up in back to back hands.
The first saw Liang Xu raise to 135,000 from under the gun and Lei call from the button. Takashi Ogura also came along from the big blind and the three players went to a flop of 3♣5♦Q♥.
After a snap-check from Ogura, Xu continued for 200,000 which was met with two calls. The 3♥ turn prompted another snap-check from Ogura and when Xu checked, Lei pushed out over half his stack with a bet of 475,000.
It was then back to Ogura who cut out chips and clicked it back 950,000. Xu quickly got out of the way before Lei went into the tank. He looked troubled as he pondered what to do but in the end he gave the hand up.
The following hand saw Lei move all in from under the gun for his last 360,000 and Xu call on the button to put him at risk.
Lei had the dominant hand and would hold when the cards fell 7♥2♠2♥3♥5♣ to give a much-needed boost to his stack.
5:55pm: Level 27 begins, blinds are 40,000/80,000 with a 10,000 ante
5:40pm: Chua steals one from Ogura
Ying Lin Chua has been using his chip lead effectively on this final table and continued the trend by putting pressure on Takashi Ogura.
On a flop of 5♣3♠10♦ Ogura continued his preflop aggression with a bet of 400,000. Chua matched the wager and the dealer turned the 6♣. Ogura waited around 60 seconds before deciding on a check and Chua made a quick bet of 500,000.
Ogura folded his hand and Chua tabled the A♥.
“Aces?” Ogura asked.
“No” came Chua’s reply.
“Show?” Ogura pleaded, and Chua flipped up the Q♦ for nothing but ace high.
5:20pm: Chip counts as play resumes
The six remaining players have returned from break and will continue with blinds at 30,000/60,000 and a 5,000 ante. Here’s how they stack up.
Ying Lin Chua – 5,595,000
Liang Xu – 3,845,000
Wayne Zhang – 2,560,000
Takashi Ogura – 1,960,000
Chengbei Lei – 1,195,000
Fan Xie – 940,000
5:10pm: First break
Our final six have stepped away from the table for a 10-minute break.
5:00pm: Yang Zhang eliminated in 7th place (HK$257,000)
This final table may have started slow but things are really heating up now with our third elimination in 30 minutes. Yang Zhang has just left the tournament area after finishing in 7th place.
Zhang bet 170,000 on the flop of 9♦Q♣4♣ before Chengbei Lei moved all in with enough to cover his 575,000 behind. Zhang didn’t look happy about it but called it off to put himself at risk.
Zhang was dominated and chasing a five to stay in the tournament. It would never come though as the K♣ turn and 6♠ river rolled off to seal his place in 7th place. Zhang collect HK$257,000 for his efforts this week.
Not long after our first elimination here today, Englishman Tom Alner has been the next to go. The hand began with Yang Zhang opening the action with a raise to 130,000 before Alner moved all in over the top for 820,000.
Wayne Zhang next to act jammed over the top with just enough to cover Alner and with the action back to Zhang, he flashed A♦Q♦ and threw the cards in the muck.
Alner needed help and with one ace already dead he wasn’t looking good to keep his tournament alive. The 3♥8♠4♦J♥2♦ runout missed both players with Zhang’s pocket queens holding to see Alner’s demise.
For his 8th place finish the UK pro receives $223,500.
Yongqiang Huang is our first final table casualty here after moving his last 600,000 in chips all in preflop. It folded around to big stack Liang Xu and he called to put Huang at risk.
Huang was in front and improved even further on the 8♥6♦A♣ flop. Xu would need to find running cards to eliminate Huang and managed to do just that as the K♣ turn and J♥ completed the board and made Xu two pair.
“Yes!” Xu cried jumping out of his seat as Huang was sent to the rail in ninth place for HK$190,000.
4:25pm: Chua on the warpath
Ying Lin Chua is at it again, this time he was involved in a preflop raising war with the now former chip leader Liang Xu.
Xu opened the action to 95,000 before Chua three-bet to 240,000. Xu wanted to play for more but after he put in a four-bet to 475,000, Chua played back at him again for 1 million.
Xu decided against it and Chua said he could pick one card to see. Xu pointed to one which was revealed to be the A♠ as Chua collected the pot and seized the chip lead, now on 4,300,000.
Chip leader Liang Xu raised to 95,000 from the cut off and after Ying Lin Chua called from the small blind, Chengbei Lei squeezed to 240,000 from the big blind. Both of his opponents called and players went to a flop of 5♣J♠7♥.
Chua then led out for 300,000 and while Lei and Xu both gave it some thought when the action was on them, they both ultimately folded and the pot was shipped Chua’s way.
4:00pm: The rich get richer
Fan Xie, Wayne Zhang and Liang Xu went three-way to a flop of 7♠9♠9♦.
Xu and Xie checked their options before Zhang led out for 125,000. After a call from Xu, Xie hesitated before throwing her hand into the muck.
The turn brought the A♠ and both remaining players checked before the 10♠ completed the board. Xu checked again but Zhang decided to take a stab for 290,000. Xu gave it a few moments thoughts before tossing in a call with 8♠7♦ for a middling flush.
Zhang showed 4♥4♣ which couldn’t compete and he dropped down to under 900,000. By picking off that bluff Xu extends his chip lead to 4,300,000.
Tom Alner made it 85,000 to go from under the gun and it folded around to Ying Lin Chua on the button. Chu three-bet to 200,000 before Alner called to see a flop of A♦K♣7♥.
Alner checked to Chua who continued for 200,000 and the Englishman found a fold. Chua’s aggression brings his stack up to 3,400,000.
In the same orbit Alner got some chips back after moving all in over a late position raise and getting it through to pick up the pot.
3:30pm: Slow start
Things have started slowly here on this final table.
It appears no one wants to be the first one sent to the rail.
There have been a few small pots with chips moving around the table but nothing substantial to report just yet.
3:10pm: Cards in the air
And we’re off!
PokerStars LIVE Macau’s Rex Cheong has just introduced our final nine players and with that the action is underway.
The blind levels now switch to 75 minutes each and begin today on 20,000/40,000 with a 5,000 ante.
Stay with us for the exciting conclusion of this Red Dragon Main Event!
Final table time!
We’re just moments away from the MPC24 Red Dragon final table!
Nine players will take their seats at 3pm in the quest for HK$2,360,000 first place prize and the illustrious Red Dragon trophy.
The chip leader to start the day will be Liang Xu. He had a great Day 3 and returns this afternoon with 3,375,000. Another one to watch is the UK’s Tom Alner. The only man outside of Asia to previously win a Red Dragon title, Alner has a chance today at becoming a two-time champion.
You can see how the whole table stacks up below. Stay with us here on the PokerStars Blog as we play down to a new champion!
MPC24 Red Dragon Final Table Draw
Seat 1 – Takashi Ogura (Japan) – 2,710,000
Seat 2 – Liang Xu (China) – 3,375,000
Seat 3 – Fan Xie (China) – 1,110,000
Seat 4 – Ying Lin Chua (Malaysia) – 2,665,000
Seat 5 – Chengbei Lei (China) 1,700,000
Seat 6 – Yang Zhang (China) – 1,375,000
Seat 7 – Tom Alner (United Kingdom) – 1,030,000
Seat 8 – Yongqiang Huang (China) – 520,000
Seat 9 – Wayne Zhang (China) – 1,610,000
All photos by Kenneth Lim Photography courtesy of PokerStars LIVE Macau