Seat 1: Takashi Ogura, 33 (Tokyo, Japan) – 2,710,000
Japan’s Takashi Ogura starts our Red Dragon final table second in chips. The 33 year-old says he’s played poker for six years and got his start in cash games. When he’s not running deep in tournaments he can usually be found playing HK$300-HK$600 at the Wynn in Macau.
Ogura’s best result to date is a 64th place finish in the WSOP Main Event for which he scored $106,056. He says his poker hero is the Texas Dolly Doyle Brunson and outside of poker, Ogura enjoys playing Mahjong.
Seat 2: Liang Xu, 28 (Shanghai, China) – 3,375,000
China’s Liang Xu had a spectacular Day 3 and will begin the final table as the chip leader. He’s been playing poker for four years and learnt the game playing with friends including Team PokerStars Pro Yaxi Zhu. Xu won the ACOP Platinum Series XI back in October for HK$169,300 and has already guaranteed himself a bigger payday here this week.
Xu says he’s enjoyed playing in Macau this week and loves to try and take down every pot. He also told us he has his eye on the prize and really wants to be the Red Dragon champion. When he’s not at the poker table Xu enjoys cycling and travel.
Seat 3: Fan Xie, 26 (Beijing, China) – 1,110,000
26 year-old business owner Fan Xie taught herself how to play poker and has been at it for six years now. This is her first-ever live tournament cash – what a way to begin a tournament poker career, with a Red Dragon final table!
Xie says that her poker hero is Tom Dwan and the most important thing to bring her to this final table was her drive to win the prestigious trophy. Aside from poker, Xie’s second favourite game is Mahjong.
Seat 4: Ying Lin Chua, (Johor Bahru, Malaysia) – 2,665,000
Ying Lin Chua is a conference manager from Malaysia who’s been playing the game for a decade now. Chua got his start playing online and taking part in home games, and these days plays stakes of HK$50/100.
Chua has already had a stellar start to 2016, winning the WPTN Philippines for US$86,130. His poker heroes include Johnny Chan and Doyle Brunson while his heroes outside of poker are his parents. Chua says he’s enjoyed the competitive nature of the tournament this week, but also networking and learning with fellow poker lovers. When he’s not playing poker, Chua can be found playing arcade games and having fun with friends and family.
Seat 5: Chengbei Li, 34 (Shanghai, China) – 1,700,000
Chengbei Li is a private banker from Shanghai and has only been playing poker for a year now. He got his start watching tutorial videos on YouTube and playing at his local poker club. His regular games these days include US$120 tournaments.
Li has no recorded results on Hendon Mob but says he has played some tournaments in China. He told us his hero is Eason Chan and this week he’s really enjoyed the experience he’s had playing the Red Dragon. During his time at the table, he attributes this deep run to balance, patience and his observational abilities.
Seat 6: Yang Zhang, 33 (Dalian, China) – 1,375,000
Yang Zhang hails from China and has been playing poker for two years. An investor by occupation, Zhang got his start in poker playing right here at PokerStars LIVE Macau. He tells us his best results so far are a first place finish in the Beijing Cup and a second place in the Beijing Millions.
Zhang is looking forward to taking home the Red Dragon trophy and says the most pivotal point of his tournament so far was his play on Day 2. Aside from poker, Zhang also likes to gamble on table games at the casino.
Seat 7: Tom Alner, 30 (Bristol, England) – 1,030,000
Tom Alner is a professional poker player from the United Kingdom and says he’s been playing the game for too long now. His greatest result so far came in a PokerStars WCOOP event where he told us he pocketed $375,000. A previous Red Dragon champion, Alner will be going for a second victory here this week.
He attributes his success this week to running good on top of his patience, discipline and poker skills. Away from the poker tables Alner likes to keep fit, play football, travel and spend time with his friends.
Seat 8: Yongqiang Huang, 34 (Shanghai, China) – 520,000
Yongqiang Huang comes into the final table as our short stack this week. He says he’s been playing poker for three years and learnt the game by watching videos. Huang tells us his favourite thing this week has been bad beating his tablemates.
Huang has enjoyed learning a lot during his time playing the Red Dragon this week and has previously battled it out in tournaments across China. Outside of the poker world, Huang’s hero is his father.
Seat 9: Wayne Wei Yi Zhang, 21 (Chengdu, China)
Chinese young gun Wayne Wei Yi Zhang has been playing poker for two years now, and learnt the game in a Michigan poker room. His greatest tournament result to date was a fifth place finish in the Macau Poker Cup High Roller and he was recently selected for the Hong Kong Stars team in the Global Poker League.
Zhang says the thing he’s most enjoyed during the tournament this week is the competition and the most crucial moment in his deep run was having his pocket kings hold during a three-way all in. Outside of poker Zhang enjoys playing Hearthstone, and he tells us that his hero is his mother.