MPC27: Feng flies the highest on Red Dragon Day 1C

September 05, 2017

Feng bags Day 1C lead; Celina Lin still in the hunt

What would the Red Dragon be without another field record broken?

PokerStars LIVE Macau has done it again, eclipsing their previous best effort with this week’s field of 1,308 to improve on their title of boasting the largest freezeout tournament in the Asia-Pacific.

This mammoth field generated a prize pool of HK$17,128,260 (~$2.6 million) with HK$3,472,000 (~$531,000) up for grabs to the eventual champion. That first-place prize includes a HK$100,000 entry into the ACOP Main Event. Before that though we’ll see 162 players paid with the min-cash set at HK$30,650 (~$4,700).

Currently, the man from today’s group with the greatest chance of claiming the best-looking trophy in poker is Taiwan’s Lien Kang Feng who emerged as the chip leader before proceedings came to a close. Feng has 11 live scores to his name which are all from here in Macau, with the biggest coming when he shipped an APPT side event in 2013 for $8,181.

Feng comes up a little shy of Day 1B leader Jesus Espinosa Fernandez so the latter will be leading the charge when Day 2 kicks off tomorrow.


Lien Kang Feng

Team PokerStars Pro Celina Lin was also in the Red Dragon hunt today, but not before she hoisted the trophy in the Ladies Event. With that victory off the back off her recent Ladies Event win at PokerStars Festival Korea it seems like she has mastered the format.

MPC27 Celina Lin ladies event.jpg

Lin survived today with 29,700 and time will tell if she can keep the momentum going this week. Her fellow PokerStars teammates Randy Lew and Aditya Agarwal were also in the mix today but unfortunately for the pair they won’t be making a return on Day 2 tomorrow.

Others returning with Lin tomorrow include Kosei Ichinose (109,500), Thomas Ward (40,900), Raghav Bansal (27,700) and the man who was just 500 in chips short of claiming the end of day chip lead, Jiabin Deng (193,800).

That’s it from us here in Macau tonight. We’ll be back to do it all again from 3pm Wednesday (GMT+8). We hope you can join us again then. In the meantime you can find the full Day 2 seat draw right here, or scroll down to read all about today’s Day 1C action.

Day 1C is in the books

Action has concluded for tonight. We’ll have a full recap as soon as all the numbers are finalized.

Stay tuned!

3:25am: Seven more hands

Only seven hands remain here on Red Dragon Day 1C.

3:10am: Big pot for Bansal who busts one
Level 11 – Blinds 800/1,600 (ante 200)

One of India’s top players, Raghav Bansal, would undoubtedly have fond memories of Macau. Last time he was here he finished second in the PokerStars Championship High Roller event for $335,910 – not a bad payday!

Bansal’s back at it again during what he admitted was a rollercoaster day, and he just scooped a huge pot to send a tablemate packing and eclipse the six-figure chip mark.

Bansal brought it in for a preflop raise to 3,700 before he was played back at by the player in the cutoff with a reraise to 9,000. After considering his options, Bansal committed to a call and watched the flop land 9♥10♦J♥.

Both players checked to the 3♠ turn where Bansal lead out for 11,000. It was then the cutoff’s turn to deliberate before she decided on a raise to 25,000. After a final tank from Bansal, he announced he was all in for 48,500, and his opponent called off for less.

Bansal: 10♥10♣
Opponent: A♥J♦

It was good news for Bansal as he had a stranglehold on the hand with the cutoff already drawing dead. She was relegated to the rail as Bansal raked in more than 100,000.

2:50am: Kan can’t call
Level 11 – Blinds 800/1,600 (ante 200)

Raiden Kan is a regular in Macau and while he’s been cruising along today he just encountered a minor setback in a recent hand.

Kan led for 7,500 on a monochrome 9♦6♦5♦ flop and the one other active player called to see the the A♠ turn roll off. The action was then checked through and the dealer presented the 3♠ river card.

Kan reached for chips, loading up 17,300, before ultimately thinking twice and opting for a check. He then faced a bet of 11,500 but snap-folded his hand.

Despite the hiccup, Kan still has a very healthy 76,000 to play with.

2:30am: Double up for Ichinose
Level 10 – Blinds 600/1,200 (ante 200)

Kosei Ichinose is sitting pretty now after winning a big coinflip to double up right before the penultimate level of the night.

After a middle position open to 3,500, the player next to act moved all in for 31,000 and change, and Ichinose called off with less for his 30,900-chip stack. The original raiser folded and the two active players tabled their hands.

Ichinose: J♠J♣
Opponent: A♥Q♠

It was almost a fair fight and one that Ichinose would win when the cards fell 10♥K♦7♣2♦10♦. His pocket jacks held to see him secure a huge double up to 65,000 while the player who jammed was left with just a small blind.

MPC27 Kosei Ichinose.jpg

Kosei Ichinose

2:10am: Updated chip counts
Level 10 – Blinds 600/1,200 (ante 200)

Wayne Zhang – 86,000
Raghav Bansal – 68,000
Raiden Kan – 62,000
Thomas Ward – 50,000
Yuki Ko – 39,000
Iori Yogo – 32,000
Kunal Patni – 31,000
Celina Lin – 29,500

1:40am: Last break of the night

We’ll be back in 15 minutes for three more levels of action. –JS

1:35am: Tu flush or Tu flush?
Level 9 – Blinds 500/1,000 (ante 100)

We’ve just Adrian Brion hit the rail, despite getting it in good.

Nan Tu had opened to 2,200 in middle position and Brion defended his big blind to see the 8♣5♣Q♥ flop. He checked to Tu who continued for 2,800, only to then raise it up to 6,200.

Tu responded with a jam, and Brion called off with the 8♥5♣ for two pair. He’d need to dodge all clubs, as Tu had the 10♣7♣ for a flush draw.

He’d hit it immediately on the 4♣ turn, and Brion couldn’t make a full house on the 2♥ river.

With that pot, Tu is up to 100,000 now. –JS

1:30am: Payout information

Now that the final Day 1 flight has been locked out we are able to bring you the prize pool and payout information.

This record-breaking 1,308-strong field generated a prize pool of HK$17,128,260 (~$2.6 million) with HK$3,472,000 (~$531,000) up for grabs to the eventual champion. That first-place prize includes a HK$100,000 entry into the ACOP Main Event.

Before that though we’ll see 162 players paid with the min-cash set at HK$30,650 (~$4,700).

1:15am: Thomas Ward gets Gay Tan
Level 9 – Blinds 500/1,000 (ante 100)

Thomas Ward has been chipping up nicely since we last saw him.

In this latest pot, he opened to 2,200 and Gay Tan defended his big blind to see a 6♠8♥Q♥ flop. Tan checked it to the raiser, and the man from Wellington, New Zealand fired again for 3,200. Call.

The turn came the J♥ both opted for a check, bringing in the 2♠ river. Tan checked a final time, and Ward reached for a small bet of just 2,500. Tan thought but ended up making the call, only to see a fantastic value bet by Ward with the J♠10♥.

Ward probably got the maximum he was going to get from Tan, and now sits with 67,000. –JS

1:05am: Latest ‘lucky eights’ demo
Level 9 – Blinds 500/1,000 (ante 100)

Not the most interesting hand, but just the latest example of the sheer unstoppable strength of pocket eights in Macau.

The board showed the 6♠10♣Q♣Q♠ and Yong Zhang bet 4,000. Kazuki Hirayama called on the button. The river came the 3♣ and both checked, and Zhang flipped over the 8♠8♦.

Hirayama simply mucked. He couldn’t handle those eights. –JS

1am: Why is Attenborough out?
Level 9 – Blinds 500/1,000 (ante 100)

Having been denied a double up by the deck not too long ago, Adrian Attenborough is now out.

We didn’t catch the action, but we did see him going to over to say goodbye to his friend Kitty Kuo, who asked how he was.

“Ahh I’m out,” said Attenborough.

“Why?” replied Kuo.

“Because I’m bad! Very bad!” joked Attenborough.

Of course he’s not really; his seventh-place finish in last night’s High Roller was the latest evidence he can play a little bit. –JS

12:50am: Lucky eights for all…but no luck for Gao
Level 8 – Blinds 400/800 (ante 100)

We’ve been saying all week that eights in Macau might as well be aces. If you have one, go all in.

That’s what Kang Gao did. Xin Zhang had opened to 2,200 and it folded to Gao in the big blind who jammed for his last 6,000. Zhang made the call for not much more and the hands were flipped:

Zhang: A♦8♥
Gao: 9♣8♣

Both had an eight, and although his hand was dominated Gao was confident. The flop fell and the first card in the window was of course the 8♠, followed by the 4♣ and Q♣. He’d need a nine to survive, and despite calling for it Gao couldn’t find one on the turn and river. –JS

12:40am: Frosty deck stings Addamo
Level 8 – Blinds 400/800 (ante 100)

Australia’s Michael Addamo has taken a big hit to his stack after a cooler saw him run into an opponent’s pocket aces.

After a button-raise to 2,100, Addamo three-bet to 7,000 from the big blind. A minute went by and then the button put in a committing four-bet to around 23,000 from his stack of 25,600. Addamo dumped enough in to cover, the button snapped it off, and the cards went on their backs.

Button: A♠A♥
Addamo: A♣K♦

Addamo was in rough shape, and while he picked up a gut shot draw to Broadway on the turn with the community cards reading J♥8♠J♠10♦, the 8♣ river bricked off to knock him down to 6,050.

12:25am: Attenborough denied double up
Level 8 – Blinds 400/800 (ante 100)

Adrian Attenborough limped in the cutoff only for the big blind of Bing Wang to put him all in. Attenborough thought for a moment before he committed his stack, which looked to be around 13,000.

It turned out to be a great decision as his A♥J♦ was ahead of Wang’s A♣10♠. But the poker gods had other ideas.

The A♦K♥6♣7♠6♦ board meant both players had aces and sixes wth a king kicker. Chop it up. –JS

12:15am: Chip count update
Level 7 – Blinds 300/600 (ante 75)

Here’s how some of our notable players currently stack up.

Raiden Kan – 58,500
Kosei Ichinose – 48,000
Raghav Bansal – 47,500
Kitty Kuo – 37,000
Michael Addamo – 35,000
Wayne Zhang – 35,000
Kunal Patni – 24,000
Adrian Attenborough – 19,500
Celina Lin – 19,000
Raymond Wu – 15,000
Vivian Im – 12,000

12am: Wu all in
Level 7 – Blinds 300/600 (ante 75)

Raymond Wu is still in the Red Dragon after moving all in for his tournament life and getting it through.

We caught the action on the Q♠4♦J♠ flop where Wu check-called the cutoff’s bet for 2,300. On the J♥ turn, however, Wu pushed his stack of 7,750 into the middle.

The two of them exchanged words for about a minute before Wu burst out laughing, and ultimately his opponent relinquished the pot Wu’s way. Wu now has 14,500 in play.

11:55pm: Lin’s in after her win
Level 7 – Blinds 300/600 (ante 75)

We just caught Celina Lin sat down in the Main Event, straight after taking down the Ladies’ Event.

“I actually thought it was going to go on for longer and I wouldn’t be able to register!” she told the PokerStars Blog. “Straight onto the next one!”

A hand was playing out at the Team Pros table meanwhile. Sun Fei had made 1,500 under the gun and it folded past Lin to Alvin Zheng who flatted. It then got to Mingchao Wu in the big blind and he shoved for around 13,000, which Fei called and Zheng folded to (showing what looked like pocket tens as he did).

Fei had those lucky eights (8♠8♦) aganst Wu’s A♦K♥, and he hit gold on the river of the 6♥J♠J♥Q♦K♣ board for the double up. –JS


Lin with Randy Lew and the Ladies Event trophy

11:40pm: We’re back…time to flip out!
Level 7 – Blinds 300/600 (ante 75)

While the Red Dragon players retake their seats, adding to that chaos is the series of flip out tournaments taking place up on the feature table.

If you’re unfamiliar with the structure, players pony up a buy in and every player at each table is all in on the first hand. The winners of all those flips then sit around and play a regular sit and go for the main prizes.

They’re very popular here in Macau, with tournament director Jane announcing all the action as it happens. Big crowds gather and cheer, while everyone who’s not playing in them wishes they were!

Other than those still in the Red Dragon of course; that’s a bit more important. –JS

11:22pm: Take a break

Players have gone on a 15-minute break. We’ll be back then.

11:20pm: Lew’s out…we assume?
Level 6 – Blinds 200/400 (ante 50)

Team Online’s Randy Lew isn’t playing in this Main Event currently for a very good reason: his girlfriend and Team Pro Celina Lin just shipped the Ladies’ Event for HK$70K. He’s just been posing with her for the winner’s photos.

Question now is, will Lew re-take a seat in the Red Dragon? It doesn’t look like it, as he’s just exited the tournament. Nanonoko is out of this one. –JS


No more for Lew

11:15pm: Another day for Attenborough
Level 6 – Blinds 200/400 (ante 50)

YET ANOTHER person who final tabled last night’s High Roller (there were only nine of them, but we seem to have introduced you to them one by one today) was Australia’s Adrian Attenborough. He’s back in business today.

Arriving to a 10♠5♣7♥ flop, Attenborough and Wai Kiat Lee both checked to the J♥ turn. Attenborough led for 1,625 and that got a quick call from Lee, bringing the 3♦ river. There’d be no more betting though, and Attenborough took it down his J♠8♠ when Lee mucked. –JS

11:10pm: Hamnett hit by Li
Level 6 – Blinds 200/400 (ante 50)

Benjamin Hamnett has had a few chips taken from him at the hands of Chao Li.

Both of them checked through the turn on a board of A♣3♥7♦8♦ before Hamnett took a stab for 2,200 from the big blind on the 2♦ river.

Li asked to see Hamnett’s stack before sizing up a raise for a total of 8,500. Hamnett took a quick peek back at his cards before they sailed face down into the muck. HE drops to 19,000 as Li lifts to 26,100.

11pm: Time for a Lai down
Level 6 – Blinds 200/400 (ante 50)

Unfortunately for Ben Lai, he’s just busted this Red Dragon.

First he opened a pot to 1,100 only to get three-bet and shoved on, forcing him to fold. Then, while our back was turned covering another hand, he was making an exit. A quick look at the table showed all his chips being shipped Takao Shimizu’s way. –JS

10:45pm: Kuo crushing
Level 5 – Blinds 150/300 (ante 25)

She started off well, and things have continued on the right track for Kitty Kuo.

After a 650 open, Kuo three-bet to 2,500 from the small blind and her opponent called to see a 4♠10♣Q♥ flop. She led immediately for 1,800 and the bet got called quickly.

That brought the 8♣ turn and Kuo jammed for 13,000. That bet was called by K♥Q♣, but Kuo had the Q♠10♠ for two pair. The river J♠ changed nothing, giving her a full double up to around 37,000. –JS

10:40pm: Two-time champion in the mix
Level 5 – Blinds 150/300 (ante 25)

Tom Alner has slayed the Red Dragon twice in the past and he’s back tonight in a bid to go for the trilogy. The Englishman first took out the title in 2013 for $106,103 and then backed it up with a victory last year for $323,469.

Alner has just taken his seat so he’s still at starting stack but we’ll be keeping an eye out to see how he progresses here on Day 1C.

10:30pm: Zhang applies the pressure
Level 5 – Blinds 150/300 (ante 25)

MPC24 Red Dragon runner-up Wayne Zhang will be looking to go one better this week and he’s off to a great start so far.

On a flop of 8♥K♣J♦ Zhang led out for 2,300 from the small blind before the button re-raised to 5,550. Zhang wanted to play for all of it and he moved in with enough to cover his opponent’s 13,700.

The button took a look back at his cards and scratched his head, only to announce a fold a minute later. Zhang now sits with a stack of over 40,000 for double starting stack.

MPC27 Wayne Zhang.jpg

Wayne Zhang

10:25pm: Finger returns
Level 5 – Blinds 150/300 (ante 25)

Another player who had a financially successful evening last night is Germany’s Martin Finger.

The EPT8 Prague winner finished fourth in the Single Day High Roller for HK$880,000, and he’s back at work in the field for Day 1C. –JS

10:15pm: Big double up for Ward
Level 5 – Blinds 150/300 (ante 25)

New Zealand’s Thomas Ward is making up for bubbling last night’s High Roller by getting off to a brilliant start tonight.

On a 4♠5♠J♦ board, there was 5,800 in the middle already and both Kangbin Zheng and Ward had checked to Kaida Zhao. Zhao then led for 2,800 and Zheng called, before Ward shoved for 16,550. Over to Zhao, he tanked for a while but eventually re-jammed over the top for about 30,000.

Zheng had a very tough decision clearly, and he took his time over it. Nobody called the clock, but after a few minutes he made a frustrated fold, and Ward quickly flipped over the 4♥4♣ for a set. Zhao had the Q♥Q♠, and the board was completed by the 6♥ and 3♠.

Now, we’re not sure what Zhang was saying in Chinese after the hand finished, but he clearly annoyed at himself for not calling. So, our guess is he folded a flush draw.

Anyway, Ward is up to 39,000 now. –JS


Ward increases

10:05pm: Drinks are off the table
Level 4 – Blinds 100/200 (ante 25)

Starbucks is as popular here in Macau as anywhere, and the fact that there’s one right outside this poker room means there are plenty of mochafrappavanillacappalatteamericanos being consumed.

Just don’t have them on the table, OK guys? One just caused a bit of confusion in this latest hand.

Hoang Anh Do opened to 500 from early position and it folded to the blinds who both called. The flop came 10♦5♠5♦, and small blind Masahiro Marumoto checked, as did the big blind. Do continued for 700, and Marumoto called. Action was on the big blind player and he went deep into the tank.

Or so we thought. It turns out we were waiting several minutes simply because the big blind player hadn’t seen Marumoto’s call due to his large Starbucks cup blocking his view. Once the confusion was settled, Marumoto apologised and took his coffee off the table. The big blind quickly folded.

Both remaining players checked the A♣ turn and J♠ river, and Marumoto took it down with the 6♥6♦.–JS

10pm: Ichinose takes Wang out
Level 4 – Blinds 100/200 (ante 25)

A sick turn of events just saw Hong Wang sent packing and Kosei Ichinose picking up some chips.

It was Michael Addamo who kicked things off with a raise to 450 and after he was called in one spot, Ichinose three-bet to 2,200. Wang was next to act and he committed his 5,575 which promptly saw it fold back to Ichinose, who clearly felt pot committed and called it off to put Wang at risk.

Wang: Q♠Q♥
Ichinose: 8♦7♦

The 5♠8♥3♦ flop was a sweaty one for Wang with Ichinose hitting top pair and a backdoor flush draw. Wang was still in front and improvedto top set on the Q♦ turn, but that card also brought Ichinose’s flush draw which was completed by the 10♦ river card.

Wang was left with nothing but a bad beat story while Ichinose climbed to 47,000.

9:50pm: Early night for Luo
Level 4 – Blinds 100/200 (ante 25)

We’ve already lost Xixiang Luo, who was seen making a swift exit from the tournament area, leaving an empty seat and no chips behind. –JS

9:40pm: A happy Wang
Level 4 – Blinds 100/200 (ante 25)

If there’s one guy in Macau who has fun whenever he plays, it’s Yang Wang. And why shouldn’t he? He won HK$435,000 last night after his seventh place finish in the Single Day High Roller, and he’s already managed to more-than double his starting stack here tonight.

He collected some chips in a hand against Zhiwei Chen just now. Picking up the action on a 3♥A♣10♥7♦ board, there was around 3,000 in the middle and Wang checked. Chen led for 2,000, and Wang called to see a river.

That came the K♠, and Wang checked again. Chen continued for 4,100, only for Wang to shove and get a quick fold. That brings his stack up to 42,000. –JS


Wang in action yesterday

9:30pm: Luan leaves us
Level 4 – Blinds 100/200 (ante 25)

The flop was spread 4♣9♥6♥ with two active players and Wei Luan checked in the big blind. Yong Zhang under the gun then bet 1,200, before Luan moved all in over the top for 5,7500.

Zhang took about two minutes to call which definitely seemed to surprise the table after he called and the strength of his hand was revealed.

Luan: J♥6♦
Zhang: 4♥4♦

Zhang had tanked with bottom set and had a strong hold on the hand against Luan’s middle pair. The A♥ turn card gave Luan some outs to a flush but the 6♠ river sealed his fate. Luan departs as Zhang builds to 28,000.

9:05pm: First break of the day

It’s time for a 15-minute break. Coverage will resume shortly.

9pm: Kings for Lin
Level 3 – Blinds 75/150

Chen-An Lin was forced to play a monster cautiously after some strong aggression from the man on his left. After a preflop raise to 375 saw the button make the call, Lin squeezed to 1,400 from the small blind.

The raise was met with another raise as the player in the big blind cold four-bet it to 3,600. It folded back to Lin and he called to take them to a flop of 3♦J♠5♦. Lin checked to the aggressor who continued for 2,500. Lin flicked in a call and they were off to the 9♥ turn card.

Both players checked it through and again on the Q♣ river before Lin tabled K♥K♦ to take it down. He now has 27,500 to play with.

8:45pm: Kuo chips up early
Level 3 – Blinds 75/150

When live reporting on poker tournaments, you’re always looking for personalities. They don’t come much bigger and better than Kitty Kuo (or Kitty Kuo Thomas, as she’s named on her Twitter after her marriage to fellow player former WSOP November Niner Russell Thomas).

The first hand we saw Kuo in was a good one for her. Picking up the action on a 9♣9♦5♠ flop, she led for 600 and got a call from Yu Han, resulting in a K♦ turn. Kuo didn’t slow down, firing again for 1,300. Call.

On the 8♠ river, she loaded the gun and shot a third bullet worth 2,700. Han instantly called, but mucked when Kuo flipped over the K♠Q♥. –JS


Nice start for Kuo

8:30pm: Early exit for…?
Level 3 – Blinds 75/150

We just caught a bust-out to report to you; the only problem is we have no idea who the players are yet.

You see, this field has swelled so much that literally every table in the building is now. Our player lists with names and countries et al is continually having to be updated due to constant arrivals (563 and counting). With no ID cards in front of any of the players either, I’m going to have to improvise this one.

So, after a middle position open and a button flat, ‘Mr X’ jammed from the small blind with the 9♣9♠. The opener called with the Q♥Q♣, and the button folded. The 10♠J♠A♦J♣4♦ board kept the queens in front, and ‘Mr X’ scurried off so fast his identity is gone forever.

Or at least until we get the latest list through. –JS

8:20pm: Zhou’s out already?
Level 2 – Blinds 50/100

Just 20 minutes or so ago we reported to you that Quan Zhou – a regular in the high rollers around the world, including a recent final table in Barcelona – was playing in this Day 1C flight.

However, our most recent walk around the many tables showed Zhou sat at a new table, far away from his original draw. I wondered over to check it out, but it turns out this table wasn’t a new tournament table at all.

It was a cash game table.

It appears that Zhou has already busted this Main Event before the end of Level 2. Could it be because he didn’t wear a flashy suit tonight? We can’t confirm this, but our hearts are saying yes. –JS


Zhou yesterday, with suit

8:15pm: Stay energized!
Level 2 – Blinds 50/100

The Macau Poker Cup Red Dragon has a great schedule that excludes too many particularly long days but fatigue at the table can still play a part in a player’s success.

Lucky for those here in the PokerStars LIVE Macau room, Red Bull, the event’s official energy drink provider has lived up to their name. They’ve stocked fridges full of Red Bull varieties around the tournament floor – available to the players free of charge!

We’ve already spotted a heap of players taking advantage of the free Red Bulls. We’ll see if that extra energy kick can help them at the felt here on Day 1C.

8:05pm: Cheng chips up from Bansal
Level 2 – Blinds 50/100

Jianzhao Cheng is off to a great start here after flopping a set and finding some value through tablemate Raghav Bansal.

Play was three handed by the turn with the board reading A♣7♠3♠2♣ and after Bansal checked from the big blind, Cheng fired for 2,500 from the cutoff. The button folded but Bansal called before the 10♥ completed the board.

A final check from Bansal prompted another barrel from Cheng – this time for 5,575. Bansal called it off and Cheng tabled 3♥3♣ for the winner.

That setback for Bansal sees him drop to 8,850 while Cheng chips up to 36,500.

7:50pm: No notable action, but more notable names
Level 2 – Blinds 50/100

On a quest to find a hand, we just ended up spotting more people to tell you about. It’s only the early levels anyway guys, everyone knows the action doesn’t get really crazy until Level 3.

But seriously, PokerStars Team Online’s Randy Lew has just entered and is waiting for his seat draw. Hid fellow Team Pro Celina Lin is currently at the final table of the Ladies’ Event, with nine remaining and $HK70K up top, but no doubt she’ll hop in once that concludes.

Chen An Lin is also taking part tonight, having finished 11th in last night’s High Roller. We’ve also spotted APPT10 Seoul winner Albert Paik, although he isn’t playing yet. He just delivered some food to fellow Korean Hyun Yoon. –JS

7:40pm: Biggest ever Red Dragon
Level 1 – Blinds 25/50

It’s now official. We needed to top 501 runners tonight to make this the biggest ever Red Dragon field, and with 530 currently on display on the tournament screens that means records have been broken. This is also the largest freeze-out tournament ever in the Asia-Pacific.

How big is it going to get? That’s the question now, as registration is still open and players continue to find their seats in the throng. –JS

7:30pm: More notables among the action
Level 1 – Blinds 25/50

The Single Day High Roller pulled a lot of the big names away from the Red Dragon yesterday but now with that complete we can see a host of familiar faces scattered across the tournament floor.

One of those is New Zealand’s Thomas Ward who actually bubbled the High Roller – he’s in the mix today and will be looking to avoid a similar fate in this Red Dragon event. It was in this very room that Ward picked up his biggest score to date with a runner-up finish in the 2015 ACOP Main Event for $481,960.

We also have a Red Spade at the tables with Team PokerStars Pro Aditya Agarwal making an appearance. And joining him among the field are notables Michael Soyza, Raymond Wu, Kunal Patni, Raghav Bansal, Iori Yogo and Roger Spets.

7:15pm: Names for the list
Level 1 – Blinds 25/50

Our field tonight is sprawled across the massive City of Dreams poker room, but we did manage to pick out several notable faces in the crowd.

A few of the guys who played in yesterday’s HK$100K Single Day High Roller have returned, including Ben Lai who finished in 5th for HK$710,000. Vietnam’s all-time money winner Linh Tran is in the mix, as is Xixiang Luo, who sits 10th on China’s list.


Get Luo

One guy we came across from our April trip to Macau for the PokerStars Championship was Raghav Bansal, who finished second in the High Roller then FOR HK$2.61 million. Coincidentally, both Lai and Luo also made that same final table!

Russell Thomas is also on the grind, which means his wife – Kitty Kuo – might be joining the field at some point too, although we haven’t spotted her yet.


Thomas showed up early

And then there’s the ever-stylish Quan Zhou, although disappointingly he’s not sporting one of his trademark outlandish suits this evening. –JS

7:05pm: Cards in the air
Level 1 – Blinds 25/50

We’re off and running here on Day 1C, and it’s going to be a big one. There are 467 entrants up on the screen currently, and that’s only going to grow as registrations remains open until the end of Level 6. –JS

5:45pm: Late night action


Good evening ladies and gents. Or good afternoon. Or good morning. Wherever you are, whatever time it is there, for the next nine hours we’ll be bringing you live updates from the Red Dragon Main Event Day 1C.

It’s a late start for this flight, with action kicking off at 7pm. They’ll be playing 12 40-minute levels, which means we’ll be done around 4am. Oh well, who needs a solid sleep structure anyway when there’s great poker to be played, watched, written about and read?

You can expect to see some well-known faces in the field tonight, a bunch of whom were in action yesterday in the HK$100K Single Day High Roller (which you can read about here). The likes of Team PokerStars Pros Jake Cody, Celina Lin, Randy ‘nanonoko’ Lew, and Aditya Agarwal were playing in that one, and none of them have hopped in the Main yet, so this is their last chance to do so. Martin Finger, Quan Zhou, Cen An Lin, Adrian Attenborough, Michael Addamo, and Sergio Aido may also decide to play tonight.

Everyone who does decide to pony up the HK$15,000 buy in will be looking to eclipse the big stacks of Day 1A chip leader Huafeng Gu (179,300) and Day 1B/overall current chip leader Jesus Espinosa Fernandez of Spain (206,500). The starting stack is 20,000. –JS

Red Dragon Day 1C reports by Brad Kain and Jack Stanton. Photos by Kenneth Lim Photography courtesy of PokerStars LIVE Macau.


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