2014 Star Poker Summer Series – Summer Series Main Event NLH / Day 1 / Flight 2

Day 1 Flight 2 complete as Ward dominates much of the day

The 2014 Summer Series Main Event Day 1 Flight 2 has concluded after 9 levels of play and 211 starters. Phil Ward was the dominant performer pushing over 300,000 in chips during Level 8 before finishing with 235,000. Charlie B (requested to be anonymous) also had a good performance, solidifying his second place at 250,900. However, it was Saliendra Sha (pictured) who took the chip lead in the last hand of the day to climb above 250,000 in chips.

Day 1 Flight 2 chip leaders:

Saliendra Sha – 255,600
Charlie B – 250,900
Phil Ward – 235,000
George Boustani – 201,900
Ben Phillips – 166,600
Teresa Natoli – 150,300
Myles Lattacher – 136,400
Guang-Ming Zhong – 127,000
Hauman Darban – 123,200
Aaron Benton – 121,000
Lerrina Heinrich – 116,700
Jordan Kilnel – 116,000
Yibo Zhou – 102,000

Day 2 will take place tomorrow (Sunday) at 12.30pm where the 69 qualifying players from Flight 1 and 82 (unofficial) players from Flight 2 will combine (for approx. 151) to play off for the Championship. The top 32 players will get paid and the winner will walk away with $157,100 and the trophy.

Join us again tomorrow from 12.30pm for full coverage of the Summer Series Main Event from the Star Poker room in Sydney.

Chip counts, who’s left?

Midway through Level 9 here’s a list of notables still alive (not including chip leaders):

Fred Alam – 98,000
Dean Yuen – 95,000
Aaron Benton – 90,000
David Borg – 88,000
Jimmy Ghobrial – 85,000
John Kouriel – 78,000
Patrick Healy – 75,000
Peco Stojanovski – 74,000
Shivan Abdine – 60,000
Nabil Edgtton – 55,000
Didier Guerin – 50,000
Rhys Gould – 48,000
Sam Khouiss – 45,000
Tony Kondevski – 40,000
Robert Spano – 39,000
Michael Tran – 23,000

One more level to go

We’ve reached Level 9 which will be the last level played today. Blinds are now 600/1200 with an ante of 100. 96 players remain from the 211 that started today.

Final break

Players are on their final 10-minute break of the day. The top chip counts are:

Phil Ward – 273,000
Charlie B – 268,000
Kris Nestorovic – 170,000
George Boustani – 168,000
Nicholas Lee – 166,000
Lerrina Heinrich – 148,000
Teresa Natoli – 135,000

Notable busts

Those that have busted in play today include David Gorr, Jason Gray, Daniel Neilson, Sam Kapra, Sheldon Mayer, Suzy Khoueis, Jared Graham and Martin Rowe.

Doin’ it for the ladies

We caught the action on a 2-3-6 flop. Jordan Kilnel bets 7k into the pot and is flat called before Teresa Natoli raises it to 22k. Kilnel re-raises to 40k forcing the limper out and Natoli all-in to 45k. Kilnel calls the extra 5k and he shows J J vs Natoli’s 3 3 for the set. With a 2 and 6 to follow, Natoli pulls in a very nice 140k pot to join the chip leaders.

It should be noted that we have two females in the top 10 chip counts currently with Lerrina Heinrich and Teresa Natoli both sitting on decent stacks.

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Latest leading chip counts

Phil Ward – 305,000
Charlie B – 236,000
Kris Nestorovic – 165,000
George Boustani – 152,000
Minh Hai Tran – 135,000
Lerrina Heinrich – 132,000

It’s getting more expensive to play

Blinds are up to 500/1000 with an ante of 100 as play has reached Level 8.

Grrrr for Gray

With Jason Gray (pictured) limping in from early position he decides to go against our advice and the formidable Phil Ward by calling his raise to 4k. We see a flop of 3-9-J. Gray checks and Ward bets 5,600, forcing Gray to push all-in for his remaining 13,200. As they turn over their cards Gray proclaims, “you’re ahead but I’m going to get lucky,” and turns over 10d Jd while Ward shows A J. Gray knows he needs two running cards or a 10 to win. And with a diamond at the turn there is a glimmer of hope as Gray gets a flush draw. Alas, the river comes a blank and Jason Gray is knocked out of the tournament.

Grrrr for Gorr

After some initial pre-flop action the flop comes Qd-9d-4d. Charlie B, holding Kd 2d, raises for 7k, David Gorr (pictured) goes all-in for his remaining 30k and is called by Charlie. To Gorr’s dismay, his Jd 10d flush is no good and he hits the rail.

Official Payouts

With 345 total entrants in this year’s Summer Series Main Event, the official prize pool is $621,000. The last 32 players will make the money and the winner will walk away with $157,100. The payouts are as follows:

1st $157,100
2nd $99,350
3rd $55,900
4th $43,450
5th $35,700
6th $29,800
7th $23,000
8th $18,000
9th $13,050
10th $9,300
11th $9,300
12th $9,300
13th $8,100
14th $8,100
15th $8,100
16th $7,150
17th $7,150
18th $7,150
19th $6,200
20th $6,200
21st $6,200
22nd $5,600
23rd $5,600
24th $5,600
25th $4,950
26th $4,950
27th $4,950
28th $4,350
29th $4,350
30th $4,350
31st $4,350
32nd $4,350

Be wary of Ward

Phil Ward is absolutely unstoppable. Our suggestion is simply not to go in a pot against him. In the last hand before the break there are two players all-in against him with his A Q suited vs 9 9 and 10 10. With nothing falling on the flop or the turn it came down to the river and a Q hits to knock out the two other players. Ward takes down another 30k+ pot to take him to an intimidating stack of 275k. The average stack is only 44k so there’s a lot of intimidating to do!

Chip Counts at the beginning of Level 7:

Phil Ward – 275,000
Charlie B – 185,000
Kris Nestorovic – 135,000
Lerrina Heinrich – 135,000
Ryan Hong – 120,000
George Boustani – 110,000
Michael Levy – 110,000

Play has resumed

Players have returned from the lavatory to face Level 7 where blinds are 400/800 with an ante of 100. Play will continue tonight through Level 9.

Quick smoke, loo or drink break

Players are on a 10-minute break as Level 6 has now concluded. Chip leader Phil Ward has continued to power on, now approaching 250,000 in chips.

This is poker after all

It seems that Ben Phillips is not the bunny he’s had everybody believe. In the cut off he wakes up with Q Q and raises to 1700. He is called by Matviy Bilenky in the small blind with Qs Js and with a flop of 9-10-J rainbow, moves all-in with top pair and an up and down straight draw for 8,300. Phillips makes the call and with two blanks on the turn and river builds his stack to a healthy 90k placing him in the top 10 of chip stacks so far.

The power of Table 12

Phil Ward (pictured) goes from strength to strength as another player falls under his spell. On a flop of 7h-Jc-Qh the player moves all-in with the nut flush draw against Ward’s K Q off suit. No heart arrives at the river or turn and Ward builds his stack to over 200k.

Current chip leaders:

Phil Ward – 200,000
Charlie B – 190,000
Kris Nestorovic – 112,000
Fred Neuman – 100,000

Reporting on table causes 3-way all-in action, kind of!

This reporter notes Ray ‘Cuzz’ B had been straddling and raising no look. Surprisingly, he had built his stack to around 68k. Along with Charlie B, they were the action kings dominating the table both on the felt and in the banter. Upon mentioning to me his successes, Cuzz advises that he would dedicate this no-look raise to me!

With Cuzz on the button everyone limps to him and as promised he raises to 3900, no-look, with the blinds only 300/600. Charlie B calls with 6c 7c and then the action comes to Jai Kemp. Kemp intends to call but instead of placing in 2 x 1000 chips he places in 2 x 5000 chips without saying anything. This means he raised to 11,900 instead of calling. Both Charlie B and Cuzz call.

The flop comes Qc-4d-4c and with a flush draw, Charlie B moves all-in for some 60k. Kemp with A Q calls with top pair, top kicker and Cuzz also snap calls with 8h 4h for his trips. The turn comes 9c giving Charlie B his flush and with no 8, 4 or repeater on the river, Cuzz is knocked out. The pot totals 185k and Cuzz leaves the tournament along with Kemp. Kemp is left wondering how he got caught up in this mess and the rest of the table is left to reminisce about the fun times while Cuzz was at the table.

Blinds are up

Level 6 has now begun with blinds at 300/600 and an ante of 75. Of the 211 players in today’s field, 169 remain. The average stack is a little over 37,000 in chips.

Bunny hop

Ben ‘The Bunny’ Phillips doubles up…maybe the knockers are wrong? In early position Phillips raises to 1100 with 10 10 and is flat called in the SB by Alex Lam. The flop comes 10-3-4 giving Phillips top set and with Lam betting 3000 straight into him he’s over the moon and flat calls him. With a 9 on the turn Lam checks and Phillips bets 8000, which Lam calls. The river comes a repeating 3 and Phillips fills up. With Lam checking, Phillips moves all-in for his remaining 18,000 which Lam calls. Lam mucks but advises later he had K K. Phillips takes down a nice pot of over 60k and it seems having K K on Table 1 is not as good as it seems.

Queen looking after Queen

Suzy Khoueis is dangerous playing a short stack but with less than 6,000 in chips she’s struggling. Holding J 9 on an A-K-10 flop she tries to steal the pot by betting from the BB but becomes worried when she is called by a pair of aces. With the gods shining on her, a gunshot Q comes on the turn enabling her to move all-in for her remaining chips. And even though only one card was needed to make the straight, she was able to get a caller anyway. Suzy builds her stack back to 14k and is keeping her head above water.

It’s simply supposed to happen that way, right?

Action early on as Alex Lam limps in under the gun only to be raised by Robert Damalian in late position to 1600. Lam flat calls alongside Ben Phillips and we see a flop of 2c-3c-8c. Lam and Phillips check with Damalian betting 3000. Lam ponders a while and makes it 7000 straight. Phillips doesn’t like being in the middle and folds. Damalian thinks long and hard and moves all-in for his remaining 11,000 to be snapped called by Lam. Damalian turns over Kd Ks and his heart is broken when he see’s that Lam is holding Ac As giving him only one out to win. When a Jc comes out at the turn it puts Damalian out of his misery as he walks away to ponder how it is he runs into Aces with Kings.

“Who needs Hollywood, that’s how we do it in Sydney!”

On a seemingly ordinary hand as several players on Table 8 joke about getting their photo taken for our reports, Ray ‘Cuzz’ B bets and then calls an all-in after a flop of 3-4-6, holding 4d 5d. His opponent turns over Q Q and although a blank comes on the turn, you guessed it, ‘Cuzz’ hits one of his outs on the river as the 2 came to make his straight. He knocks out a player and is up over 70,000 in chips.

Blinds are up, registration has closed
Level 5 is now upon the players, bringing with it blinds of 200/400 and an ante of 50. Registration has now closed with the official entries for the day at 211. With yesterdays 134 entrants, the total entries for the 2014 Summer Series Main Event are 345, generating a prize pool of over $620,000.

Major break time

Players are on a 20-minute break. Phil Ward is our chip leader after winning a big pot just before the break. In a strange coincidence, Victor Teng sat in the same position yesterday on Table 12 and finished the day second in chips. We’re sure Ward will be hoping that omen bodes well for him today.

Phil Ward – 133,000
John Kouriel – 85,000
Minh Hai Tran – 77,000

Benton battling against quads

Towards the end of Level 4 Aaron Benton (pictured) has taken a big hit when he had to lay down his A K on the river to a shove with quad 7s. He remains alive, just, with 8,000 in chips.

Big lay down

In mid-position Jean-Baptiste Felix wakes up with K K and raises to 700 only to be raised by the big stack of Minh Hai Tran to 1,500 and then re-raised by Sam Lucisano on the button to 3,600. Felix thinks carefully and then re-raises again to 9,100 and Lucisano moves all-in over the top. Felix still has 27k behind and is clearly out-chipped by Lucisano. Felix puts his heads in his arms and crying, folds showing his K K. Lucisano being the good man he is shows his A A. Could you have folded your kings? Would you have moved all-in when you have position?

Onto the next level

Players have now reached Level 4 where blinds are 150/300 with an ante of 25. There are currently 206 entries today and 186 remain.  There’s another hour of registration time left and only 10 players away from reaching a total of 350 entrants.

Out in the wilderness

There’s a lone table in the ‘old’ area of the poker room where 2011 Aussie Millions Champion and Australian Poker Hall of Famer David Gorr is seated. It looks like they’re playing in a different tournament to the others. Perhaps they’ll play inspired poker as if it’s their own special final table. Gorr has about the average in chips at 30,000.

Pretty as a picture

Michael ‘Angelo’ Longabella is our chip leader as we approach the end of level 3 with 85,000 in chips. Minh Hai Tran (pictured) is biting at his heals with 75,000.

Nothing happening for Neilson
The experience of Daniel Neilson could not get him through Day 1 of the Main Event this year as he hits the rail early in Level 3. Having had the second nuts twice previously, folding once and losing to the nuts, he finally went all-in for his remaining 4,400 in chips with A K. Unfortunately for Neilson he was called by an opponent holding 8 8! Although he hit an Ace on the board, the river came an 8 to seal his fate and knock him out of the tournament.

Bring on Level 3

Play has restarted with blinds at 100/200 and an ante of 25.

Time for a kit kat

Players are on a 10-minute break.

The top 3 chip counts at the end of Level 2:
Sam Lucisano – 68,000
Simon Moshi – 63,000
Shivan Abdine – 61,000

Shoving with Queens

A big pot has developed on Table 7 coming into the first break as Julian Lee with Q Q goes all-in for 21,900 against Victor Fong with 10 10 on an 8-high board. With two blanks coming on the turn and river Lee takes down a 50k pot.

Not a great deal of action

As we approach the end of level 2 and the first 10-minute break, there has not been much of major consequence to occur other than four players having hit the rail. The total entries today have reached 194 for a total of 328 players. Thankfully Shivan Abdine (pictured) refrained from wearing his onesie to play today so there’s been no need to call for security. By the way, Abdine is travelling along nicely with about 55k in chips.

Big names step up again for Star Poker

There are again a number of notables and familiar faces in the field today including David Gorr, Jason Gray, Didier Guerin, Aaron Benton, Mike Ivan (pictured), Tony Kondevski, Shivan Abdine, David Borg, Rhys Gould, Dean Yuen, Sam Khouiss, Martin Rowe, Suzie Khoueis, Nabil Edgtton, Daniel Neilson, Sam Capra and Sheldon Mayer.

Thanks to The Inside Word

Live reporting for this event is proudly brought to you by PokerMedia Australia partners The Inside Word who provide detailed sports betting analysis and insightful, independent commentary about local and international sports.

They’ve already picked the winner of the first at Rosehill so check out the rest of today’s racing tips here!

Blinds are up
Players are now starting Level 2 with blinds at 100/200. Currently 186 players have entered today taking the total 320 entrants.

Money for the bunny

Ben ‘The Bunny’ Phillips rakes in his first and more than likely, his only pot of the day. Sources close to Phillips feel that if there’s that easy money in the field and with plenty of seats still available, come on down!

Will we crack 300?

Expectations are high for at least 300 players to enter this year’s Main Event, possibly even as high as 350. Currently entries for today are 160 after the first 15 minutes of play. Add to that the 134 from yesterday and 300 should be a lock. Registration will remain open until the start of Level 5 (end of the prior break) at approximately 5pm this afternoon. If you’re contemplating playing simply head down to The Star and buy in for $2,000.

Play is underway in Day 1 Flight 2

Cards are in the air (actually pushed across the table) as Day 1 Flight 2 is underway. Blinds are 50/100 and players start with a chip stack of 30,000.

Thanks to our live reporting partners The Inside Word

Live reporting for this event is proudly brought to you by PokerMedia Australia partners The Inside Word.

Welcome to the 2014 Star Poker Summer Series Main Event

Welcome to PokerMedia Australia’s coverage of the 2014 Star Poker Summer Series Main Event, live from The Star in Sydney.

Day 1 Flight 1 yesterday saw 134 players enter and 69 qualify for Day 2 to be played tomorrow (Sunday). They will join those that make it through today’s Flight 2.

The 2014 Main Event is one of the flagship tournaments on the Star Poker schedule. The buy-in again this year is $2,000 ($1,800 + $200). As has been the case in the Main Event both last year and in the 2014 Sydney Champs Main Event, players will start with 30,000 in chips.

Levels are scheduled to run 60 minutes and 9 levels will be played which will take us through to approximately 10.30pm tonight.

Follow our coverage over the next four days as play continues towards crowning another Star Poker Summer Series Main Event champion.

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