LIVE REPORTING: WPT League Sydney QPC Main Event Day 1B

Fulop bags the lead after Day 1B; that’s a wrap!

Well folks, that’s another Day 1 flight in the can and it’s Jacob Fulop who holds court, bagging 806,000! He’s followed by Tom Elwood, who locked up 640,000, while David Unasa (602,000), Jin Xue (527,000) and Nam Nguyen (471,000) complete our top five.

Other notables in the peloton include Van Le, Mai Ha, Yung Chiang Chen, Mark Green, Nicholas Antoinette, Ling Liu, Tony Shmelon and Max Pearce. In all, 27 players out of the 155 total entries that were taken in tonight will return on Sunday for Day 2.


Jacob Fulop806,000
Tom Elwood640,000
David Unasa602,000
Jin Xue527,000
Nam Nguyen471,000
Van Le437,000
Mai Ha431,000
Yung Chiang Chen361,000
Mark Green333,000
Nicholas Antoinette293,000
Ashor Shlemon274,000
Michael Canturi267,000
Ivan Zlomislic255,000
Alecsander Lawrence223,000
Vanig Kalpakian223,000
John Pachos214,000
Tony Shlemon197,000
David Ly189,000
Ling Liu183,000
Andres Vasquez146,000
Abhimanyu Singh135,000
Neoklis Gkoulelis110,000
Amanda Salter108,000
Max Pearce105,000
Kresimir Kardum96,000
Matviy Bilenky90,000
Pham Nguyen80,000

Thanks again for tuning into PokerMedia Australia’s Live Reporting coverage. Join us again from 12pm AEST as we bring you tomorrow’s epic two-for-one Day 1 extravaganza. Until then, from all of us here in the Pavilion, thanks for your company and we’ll see you soon. ‘Bye for now!

Got ’em!

There’s been a flurry of action throughout the final minutes of this level, with Van Le and Vanig Kalpakian benefiting from some last-gasp efforts before play came to a close.

Over on Table 8, action folded around to a player in late position who open-shoved for just over two bigs with KJ, but although he found himself in a fair fight against Le’s A4, he was vanquished after the dealer spread the board of 241082.

Our reporter then rushed over to Table 2, where Dean Blunt had open-shoved from under the gun holding AK; action then folded around to Kalpakian who snap-called out of the big blind with QQ, which held all the away down the 9545J.

Van Le437,000
Vanig Kalpakian270,000
Dean BluntBUSTED!

And with that, Day 1B of the WPT League Sydney QPC Main Event is in the books! We’ll have our wrap-up of today’s proceedings coming your way soon.

Level 14: 3,000/6,000 (6,000)

“I’m good poker, me!”

Two more bust-outs over on Table 2, with Darren Thomas and Nurlan Boobekov both sent to the rail as we approach the last level of Day 1B.

Earlier, Thomas gambled with his very short stack, jamming pre-flop with 75 and struck gold on the flop of 552 against Tony Shlemon’s AQ, only to then see justice come running with the turn and river of 3, 4 to give Shlemon the wheel and the scoop.

A short time later, Jacob Fulop woke up with KK against Nurlan Boobekov’s AK, with neither hand improving on the board of 48832 to bring the field down to 31.

Fulop then attempted to give our reporter a pseudonym, but Ling Liu stopped him in his tracks.

“Come on, Jacob – the people at home want to know that you knocked out Nurlan!” Liu said.

“Woo hoo! I’m good poker, me!” Fulop laughed as he raked in his newly acquired chips.

Jacob Fulop565,000
Tony Shlemon300,000
Nurlan BoobekovBUSTED!
Darren ThomasBUSTED!

Samia struck out

Although he managed to double up before the final break, Richie Samia was taken out at the hands of Tom Elwood on Table 3 midway through the penultimate level of the night.

Samia open-shoved for his last 82,500 from middle position before action folded around to Elwood.

“Alright, I’ll look you up,” Elwood said before putting in the chips to call.

Elwood: AQ
Samia: AJ

The board of 8K845 did nothing to change the outcome, and thus we lost one more.

Tom Elwood200,000
Richie SamiaBUSTED!

Level 13: 2,500/5,000 (5,000)

Pappas picked off

Yung Chang Chien has now reached the half-million chip mark after eliminating Steve Pappas in the lead-up to the final 10-minute break of the night.

All the money was in the middle pre-flop; Pappas was at risk with AJ, but although he flopped top-top on the board of 73J810, Chien’s QQ held to reduce the field down to 41.

Yung Chang Chien500,000
Steve PappasBUSTED!

Time for us to take 10 … when we return, we’ll be playing through two more 30-minute levels before we bag and tag!

Samia strikes back

It’s been a rollercoaster of day for Richie Samia, but he’s just got himself back up to more than 150,000 after doubling through John Zeppieri.

Samia jammed with 66 and found himself flipping for his tournament life against Zeppieri who called him down with AK, which improved to two pair after the flop came down 747, before the turn and river ran out 3,Q.

Richie Samia158,000
John Zeppieri26,000

Level 12: 2,000/4,000 (4,000)

Deja … Van?

Van Le has been doing some serious damage on Table 8, however Leslie Byrne has managed to double through him as action continues in the WPT League Sydney QPC Main Event.

Action folded around to Le who raised from the hijack before Byrne moved all-in for his last 36,000 from the cutoff; the rest of the table got out of the way and Le called.

Byrne: AK
Le: A10

Board: Q3973

A minor setback for Le, who still holds a stack worth more than half a million.

Van Le520,000
Leslie Byrne85,000

QPC ROUND-UP – Event #10: Robo Reload

Now for the results of the $125 buy-in Robo Reload, and it was Sam “Big Papa” Papadimatos that emerged victorious, topping a field of 102 players to earn himself more than $4,000 in cash and a ticket to the Big Dance!

WPT League Sydney stalwart Lucky Legato, who won the Single Bullet here at the Pavilion back in February, also featured at the final table, along with “The Two Zorans” in Mirkovic and Janjetovic.

WPT LEAGUE SYDNEY QPC ROBO RELOAD ($125 buy-in, 102 entries, 12 players paid)*

1Sam Papadimatos$4,125
2Paul Sammour$2,970
3Jovan Milic$2,100
4Daniel Tolomeo$1,500
5Zoran Mirkovic$1,000
6Lucky Legato$750
7Jaclyn Zammit$550
8Matthew Yan$400
9Zoran Janjetovic$300
*Final table results shown; full results available at

Level 11: 1,500/3,000 (3,000)

Inabinet bins Chebib

Steve Chebib has been amongst those to have hit the rail in this level, taken out at the hands of Chad Inabinet.

All the money was in the middle pre-flop; Chebib was at risk with his 1010, but found himself flipping for his tournament life against Inabinet’s AK.

Chebib kept the lead and picked up a few more outs after the dealer spread a flop of 786, but Inabinet snatched it back when the A appeared on the turn and held after the river bricked out in the form of the 2.

Chad Inabinet118,000
Steve ChebibBUSTED!

QPC ROUND-UP – Event #9: One Shot

Time now for another QPC Sydney flashback and the first of three QPC rings for Arsn Younadem!

“The Assyrian Warrior” claimed his first piece of QPC bling for the series after topping a field of 187 runners to claim $3,385 in cash and a Main Event seat. QPC Sydney Reload Champion Austin Murphy and Rowan Carthey were also amongst those to have recorded another ITM finish in this event.

WPT LEAGUE SYDNEY QPC ONE SHOT ($90 buy-in, 187 entries, 21 players paid)*

1Arsn Younadem$3,385
2Martha Wetere$2,700
3Rowan Carthey$1,800
4Nicholas Earl$1,300
5Masato Alba$1,000
6Anthony Moss$750
7James Lai$550
8Emmanuel Valdez$400
9Steve Jay$300
*Final table results shown; full results available at

Level 10: 1,500/2,500 (2,500)

Flights of fancy

Day 1B of the Main Event has now been locked out at 155 total entries, with 79 players still in the hunt.

Amongst those to have late reg’d in the last stanza included 2018 APT Sydney Main Event Champion Ling Liu, along with German ex-pat Martin Finger, who holds almost USD $7.7 million in total career earnings and renowned for his breakthrough victory at the EPT Prague Main Event back in 2011.

This now brings the total prize pool for the Main Event up to $192,000, with two more flights to be run tomorrow. Day 1C kicks off tomorrow at 12pm AEST and overlaps ever-so-slightly into Day 1D, which starts at 7pm.

Pavilion Poker Room Managing Director Bruno Rao has informed PMA that this will most likely change for future QPC Main Events (i.e. one day for each of the four Day 1 flights), and insists that contrary to the current trends: “They’ll still be full Day 1 flights … no turbos!”

Level 9: 1,000/2,000 (2,000)

Unasa on song

David Unasa has managed to get himself on the right end of an epic three-way-all-in showdown to take the overall chip lead into the next break of the night.

All the money was in the middle before the flop; Unasa’s 99 were well behind the QQ of Nav Mahajan and AA of Shane Khouiss, but incredibly, Unasa rivered a set on the board of 76439!

After the chips were cut down, Mahajan was confirmed as the short stack, but he has since re-entered.

David Unasa365,000
Shane Khouiss103,500
Nav Mahajan50,000*

Time for another 10-minute break. Back shortly!

Maximum value

Over on Table 13, we caught up with APLPT Sydney II Main Event Champion Luke Thomas, as well as Max Pearce, who is now up to more than 180,000 in chips.

Action folded around to the player in the hijack position who min-clicked to 3,500 and Thomas called from the button before Pearce called from the small blind. The big blind also called, making it four-handed to a flop of 98K.

The others then checked to Thomas who opened for 8,500; after about a minute or so, Pearce check-raised, pushing out a stack of T5,000s. The big blind folded and the hijack called all-in before Thomas got out of the way.

Hijack: AA
Pearce: K8

The turn and river bricked out 10, 4, confirming the hijack’s elimination.

Max Pearce183,000
Luke Thomas36,000

Level 8: 800/1,600 (1,600)

Sweet deal for Salter

Over on Table 11, our reporter caught some late action between Toby Giles and Amanda Salter on a board that read J10KK into a four-handed pot worth about 20,000; a player in early position led out before both Salter and Giles called, forcing the player on the button out of the way before the dealer produced the river 7.

The EP then checked to Salter who opened for 12,000 and Giles called before the EP check-folded.

“I have a straight,” Salter said as she flipped up 98. Giles screwed up his face before slamming his hand into the muck.

Amanda Salter131,000
Toby Giles11,000

QPC ROUND-UP – Event #8: Reload Rampage

Score one for the Old Guard! “Rocket” Rod Hooker picked himself up some QPC bling last week after winning the $60 buy-in Reload Rampage, defeating a field of 145 to secure a Main Event seat plus $3,725 in prize money. Well played, sir!

WPT LEAGUE SYDNEY QPC RELOAD RAMPAGE ($60 buy-in, 145 entries, 17 players paid)*

1Rod Hooker$3,725
2Amjed Slewa$2,850
3James Lai$2,000
4John Zeppieri$1,500
5Amer Odisho$1,100
6Victor Lastra Garcia$850
7Manoj Kapoor$650
8William Lacherdis$500
9Walter Bennett$400
*Final table results shown; full results available at

Level 7: 600/1,200 (1,200)

Money to Byrne

Leslie Byrne has also scored himself a big chunk of change, eliminating another player just before the blinds ticked over to Level 7.

All the money was in the middle pre-flop four-handed after the dealer had spread a board of 485AJ, but after Byrne and the other two players had checked down all streets, he rolled up AA to scoop.

“That was a nice 80K pot right there!” Byrne remarked.

Leslie Byrne83,000

Tolomeo triples

David Tolomeo has tripled up after a big three-way all-in over on Table 6.

All the money was in the middle pre-flop between Tolomeo, Kosta Douka and David Ly; Ly was the shortest stack and at risk holding 99, but although he was flipping against Douka’s AK, Tolomeo had them both covered with his JJ.

Nothing changed after the dealer spread the board of 38348, and Ly headed to the cage to load up his second bullet.

Kosta Douka93,000
David Tolomeo55,000
David Ly50,000*

Level 6: 500/1,000 (1,000)

Vasquez clips Pham

Over on the feature table, the UTG+1 player raised to 2,100 and action folded around to Ali Alzuhairy who made the call. Pham Nguyen and Andrez Vasquez both called out of the small and big blinds respectively, making it heads-up to a flop of AK4.

Nguyen then opened for 1,500 and Vasquez called, prompting the others to get out of the way before the duo checked the 4 on the turn.

Nguyen then check-called Vasquez’s bet of 16,000 after the dealer brought down the river 2, but threw his cards into the muck when Vasquez showed down A6 for two pair.

Andrez Vasquez118,500
Pham Nguyen61,000

QPC ROUND-UP – Event #7: Teams

Teamwork makes the dream work! Pham Nguyen and Luke Camilleri have each taken home a QPC ring and trophy after defeating Abdul Adlouni and Novica Perendic heads-up in the Teams Event! Both pairings cashed out for $4,750, while Adday and Oshana and Ash Shlemon finished third.

WPT LEAGUE SYDNEY QPC TEAMS ($350 buy-in, 52 entries, six teams paid)*

1Luke Camilleri / Pham Nguyen$4,750*
2Abdul Adlouni / Novica Perendic$4,750*
3Adday Oshana / Ash Shlemon$2,800
4Jimi Tahere / Christ Arshak$1,700
5Joe Romeo / John Vartuli$1,000
6James Vourantonis / Sam Papadimatos$600
*Denotes heads-up deal; full results available at

Level 5: 400/800 (800)

That Wyn-ning feeling

Wyn Pham has eliminated QPC debutante Peter Tadros only moments before the first break in a monster hand over on Table 8.

All the money was in the middle between Pham, Tadros and George Francis after heavy action on all streets across a board of 93J310 and we got there just as the cards had been tabled.

Pham: JJ
Francis: 32
Tadros: 72

Pham’s top set resulted in her effectively tripling up; Tadros sat in silence and watched as Pham stack up her chips before eventually taking his leave.

Wyn Pham85,000
George Francis56,000
Peter TadrosBUSTED!

Have a stretch, folks – we’ll be back in 10 minutes!

QPC ROUND-UP – Event #6: Patriots

Now for the results of the sixth event of the QPC Sydney calendar, with the $60 buy-in Patriots tournament, which was won by Isitolo Tomasi. Tomasi straight chopped for the cash with Single Bullet Champion Ali Alzuhairy heads-up before pocketing the Main Event seat and his first QPC ring.

WPT LEAGUE SYDNEY QPC RELOAD ($60 buy-in 209 entries, 22 players paid)*

1Isitolo Tomasi$3,837*
2Ali Alzuhairy$3,837*
3Rowan Carthey$2,330
4Korissa Naicker$1,650
5Benjamin Wainwright$1,150
6Grujica Novakovic$850
7Shiwan (PK) Mahmud$650
8Jim Kanan$500
9Danial Saloum$400
*Denotes mutually agreed deal. Final table results shown; full results available at

Level 4: 300/600 (600)

QPC ROUND-UP – Event #5: Reload

Austin Murphy powered his way to victory in the $60 buy-in Reload, defeating a field of 103 entries to take home his first QPC ring. After a cent was skimmed off the top to pay out William Fai on the bubble, Murphy cut a deal heads-up with second-place finisher Haroon Darmo to give him the Main Event seat.

WPT LEAGUE SYDNEY QPC RELOAD ($60 buy-in 103 entries, 11 players paid)*

1Austin Murphy$1,500*
2Haroon Darmo$1,455*
3Adi Dahari$1,000
4Ram Lakshmanasamy$700
5Raad Ali$520
6Marino Begue$400
7Taulima Kraus$300
8Brooke Loka$220
9Tony Obeid$150
10Linda Mason$100
11William Fai$100*
*Denotes mutually agreed deal; full results available at

Tzanakes vanquished

Greg Tzanakes has just been whalloped at the hands of QPC Sydney Invitational Champion John Vartuli.

Both Tzanakes and Vartuli went into a five-way raised pot to a flop of 1035; the blinds checked to Tzanakes who open-shoved before Vartuli called, as did another player on the button, forcing the blinds out of the way before the button folded to Vartuli’s all-in bet on the turn of the K.

Vartuli: K10
Tzanakes: 53

Vartuli’s bigger two pair held up after the river 9 completed the board. Tzanakes was clearly upset, cursing Vartuli through gritted teeth as he stood up to leave.

“I can’t believe you called [that flop] with just one pair!” Tzanakes seethed.

Vartuli just shrugged, smiled and raked in the pot as Tzanakes grabbed his belongings and stormed out.

John Vartuli117,000
Greg TzanakesBUSTED!

Level 3: 200/400 (400)

QPC ROUND-UP – Event #4: Invitational

And now for our continuation of the QPC Sydney results round-up, starting tonight with John Vartuli, who scored his second career QPC ring after winning the Pavilion’s special invite-only freeroll!

It also adds to what has already been a stellar start to 2022 for “The Nature Boy”, having won an APLPT Sydney title back in March. Wooooooooooo!

WPT LEAGUE SYDNEY QPC INVITATIONAL (103 entries, 10 players paid)

1John Vartuli$1,500
2George Adam$1,000
3Ali Alzuhairy$800
4Nenad Vujancevic$650
5Pham Nguyen$500
6Zoran Tosic$350
7Tara Chambers$300
8Amir Ismaiel$250
9James Lai$200
10Constantinos Apostolou$150
*Full results available at

Poker 101

Peter Tadros – who is playing in his first live poker tournament ever – has been seated on Table 8, which includes a couple of big-name locals in the form of Wyn Pham and George Francis.

All three were involved in a four-way re-raised pot to a flop of A310, which was checked around before Tadros checked to Pham on the turn of the 4, who opened for 4,700.

Francis called from the cutoff and the player on the button folded, as did Tadros before Pham bet 7,700 after the river 10. Francis glanced at his cards and grimaced before eventually letting his hand go.

“Good bluff, Wyn, good bluff!” Pham exclaimed, patting herself on the shoulders before raking in the pot.

“I think I gave you too much respect there!” Francis said, “but I reckon you had the ace there, for sure.”

Wyn Pham65,000
George Francis65,500
Peter Tadros26,000

Level 2: 200/300

Tzanakes blocks Choi

Some early action between Greg Tzanakes and Jae Choi has resulted in the the WPTDeepStacks Sydney Opening Event 10th place finisher taking a sizeable hit to his stack.

After Choi raised from UTG+2 to 500, Tzanakes and John Vartuli both called, as did the button and big blind players to make it five-handed to a flop of QA5.

The big blind player checked to Choi who opened for 1,5000; Tzanakes and Vartuli called, the button folded and the big blind check-called before the dealer produced the 9 on the turn.

The big blind checked and Choi fired a second shell of 5,000. Tzanakes was the only caller, making it heads-up to the river 9, where Choi then check-called Tzanakes’ bet of 6,000, only to muck after Tzanakes tabled J10 for the flush.

“That was a bad river card for me,” Choi lamented.

Greg Tzanakes62,000
Jae Choi18,500

Cards in the air

Day 1B is now officially underway!

Here’s a quick cross-section of some of the early arrivals for tonight’s flight, but although there’s only 56 runners seated, we expect that number to increase significantly during the late registration period (once they’re all able to battle through all that Friday night Sydney traffic).

Level 1: 100/200

One ring to rule them all

Good evening and welcome back to St Johns Park Bowling Club for Day 1B of the WPT League Sydney QPC Main Event!

It’s certainly an exciting time for the Australian poker industry, with the popularity of the game surging back to levels (and beyond) since those first seen after the ‘Great Australian Poker Boom’ of 2005.

Players are spoilt for choice when it comes to live poker, with buy-ins and formats catering to all tastes and budgets, but there would be few that would argue that one of the most challenging aspects of the industry is finding that point of difference – that certain something, that je ne sais quoi that sets you apart.

In the WPT League’s case, the answer is simple: the coveted championship ring.

To win one is one thing, but in Arsn Younadem’s case, winning three of them is truly a class above. That said, he’s not the first to achieve this feat, with Graham Gillespie taking out his first QPC ring on the Gold Coast before picking up two more in the inaugural QPC Newcastle last year.

Of course, it would be remiss of us to not give mention to the “Beard Bros” – Wayde Rickhuss and Justin Gordon – who have both won three and four rings respectively, but admittedly, the PokerMedia Australia Live Reporting Team still have a hard time trying to figure out which is which.

And if you thought that wasn’t enough to get you motivated, our friends at WPT League Illawarra have just released the schedule for their second QPC series, taking place at Wests Illawarra from 26 August to 11 September.

Head over to for more information, and be sure to also stay with us right here on the PMA Live Reporting blog for all the updates straight from the Pavilion to your screens from 6pm AEST. See you soon!

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