All smiles: Smiljanic heads the field heading into the first WPT Prime final table on Aussie soil

After a fast paced second day, the WPT Prime Gold Coast Opening Event has been narrowed down to just 9 hopefuls vying for a major title; for many them, their first.

Dan Smiljanic will take a clear lead over the rest of the field tomorrow, almost double the chipstack of his closest competitor in the form of Nathan Telgado. Neither player has a major title to their name.

Smiljanic was in action aplenty today, eliminating player after player after the bubble burst, culminating in a backdoor full house to eliminate 11th place finisher Matt Vowles. Telgado’s stack launched into orbit when he scored a rare triple knock-out, turning quads to have all three opponents drawing dead.

Dan Smiljanic

Smiljanic said to PokerMedia Australia that he was ecstatic to have made the final day and broken through “the ‘Day 2 hoodoo’; I’ve never made it through Day 2 before and it’s nice to be on a big final table as a result of this. Tomorrow will be a challenge, got to try to avoid calling too many jams against short stacks. Will try to pick my spots, pick my moments, but I’m not locking up. I’m here to play, hopefully apply some pressure. Don’t want to reveal too much!””

Overnight chip leader Michael Clair took a big dent to his stack towards the end of the day, but remains in the hunt to convert from his mammoth Day 1. Local grinder Carlos Youssef, who made a hat-trick of final tables at the GC Champs in March of this year but was unable to convert any into a major title either – although to his credit, scored two runner-up finishes.

Carlos Youssef

In fact, of the 9 players on the table, just one – South Australian ex-pat Chin Wang, now residing in Queensland – has broken through for a maiden major title. In Wang’s case that came in March this year, when he won the $660 Big Wave at the GC Champs at this very venue for $22,498.

A win here in this event would dwarf that, worth $55,589 to the eventual winner, along with the beautiful trophy.

Chin Wang

Action will commence at 11:30 AEST, and PMA will be there to bring you all the action from the first card to slice through the air.

WPT Prime Gold Coast Opening Event Final Table Seat Draw

1Dean Stevenson1,360,000
2Carlos Youssef305,000
3Lawrence Stephenson695,000
4Jerry Wang745,000
5Michael Clair405,000
6Nathan Telgado1,745,000
7Hayden Doughty295,000
8Chin Wang1,405,000
9Dan Smiljanic3,075,000

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