LIVE REPORTING: 2022 WSOP Circuit Gold Coast Opening Event Day 1A

Image courtesy of The Star Gold Coast

Victor Jaucian bags WSOP Circuit Gold Coast Opening Event Day 1A chip lead; that’s a wrap!

Self proclaimed house dad, Victor Jaucian, has emerged atop the chip counts after the first day of the WSOP Circuit Gold Coast Series.

From the 121 total entries taken in today, 20 players have so far bagged for Day 2. Jaucian holds 524,000 ahead of Connie Graham with 427,000 with only three other players holding more than 300,000 in chips.

In his chat with PokerMedia Australia, Jaucian said he felt “pretty excited”.

“I’ve played a couple (of tournaments) like WPT here, and bagged a couple of times but that’s about it.” Jaucian said. “So experience-wise, I’m still a newbie compared to a lot of people, I’ve only been playing a couple of years.”

“Having some chips to work with, but also being at a major tournament like WSOP is a privilege. First time I’ve had a decent amount of chips in a big tournament,” he continued.

In his spare time, the Brisbanite loves cycling, running and playing golf, and says he’s proud to spend much of his time as a house dad with his wife and kids.

Jaucian will head back home tonight to rest before Day 2 on Saturday, noting that he has to do the “school run” tomorrow also.

Speaking of his goals for Day 2: “I Just want to run as deep as I can, bonus would be the cash, or final table.”

PMA will return from 12:30pm AEST tomorrow (Friday) for coverage of Day 1B of the Opening Event here at The Star Gold Coast. We’ll see you all then and we thank you for joining us for our live reporting of today. Get some rest because tomorrow is sure to be even bigger!

Victor Jaucian

Strang along

With a board laid out 65106A we caught the river action on the Feature Table with a pot of about 120,000 sat in the middle. Martin Ward bet 80,000, sending Errolyn Strang into the tank.

Eventually finding a call, Ward turned over Q7 for the flush, as Strang sent her cards into the muck.

Martin Ward401,000
Errolyn Strang286,000
Errolyn Strang

Mansell sold out

A cruel ending to Josh Mansell’s Day 1A took place as reported to us by one of the players on Table 7. In a hand where all the chips got in the middle pre-flop, Mansell was in a prime position to double-up when his Pocket Jacks were pitted against the Pocket Tens of Anthony Cierco.

The 10 on the turn swung the fortunes around giving Cierco new life and ending the tournament life of Mansell.

Anthony Cierco156,000
Josh MansellBUSTED!
Anthony Cierco

Level 16: 3,000/6,000 (6,000)

Sun run

Over on Table 8, the trend of tight play continued with action once again folding around to the blinds.

Robert Damelian elected to complete from the small blind, Wenjie Sun moved all-in from the big and Damelian snap-called, throwing down a monster pair of KK, with Sun revealing AJ after a pained hesitation.

The first four cards were as comfortable as it could get for Damelian, with 56910 dealt out. The river brought the A to save the day for Sun.

Robert Damelian295,000
Wenjie Sun162,000

Paul in

We caught action on Table 7 on the river with a board showing K7367. Paul Eden moved all-in for his remaining 75,000 into a pot of over 110,000. Cierco sat in the big blind, clearly distressed but unable to fold, shaking his head as he put in calling chips.

Eden turned over his AA for the win as Cierco slid his cards into the muck in response.

Paul Eden263,000
Anthony Cierco138,000
Paul Eden

Level 15: 3,000/5,000 (5,000)

Haddad enough

Sam Haddad opened to 11,000 with JJ, Chris Zenonos three-bet to 22,000 and Haddad responded with an all-in for a total of 60,000.

Zenonos called to see he was in trouble with his 1010.

The dealer handed Haddad a cruel blow with the spread of 7548Q handing Zenonos a four-card flush.

Chris Zenonos137,000
Sam HaddadBUSTED!
Chris Zenonos

Intensity building

Over on our Feature Table, Errolyn Strang and Huss Hassan were involved in a hand together.

We caught the action from the flop, with the board displaying 242. Strang checked to Hussan who bet 55,000.

The turn brought the 10 to which both players checked.

The river was the 3 and Strang checked it over to Hassan, who tanked for a minute before electing to check back.

Strang turned over 55 and Hassan mucked. This concluded a tense hand with serious deliberation underlying each check in the hand.

Errolyn Strang487,500
Huss Hussan221,000

Level 14: 2,000/4,000 (4,000)

Sam slammed

Josh Mansell was the beneficiary of a dream scenario, finding himself with AA against Sam Haddad’s KK.

Mansell shoved from UTG for his remaining 57,500 and Haddad made the call from middle position.

The spread of 77Q4Q gave no additional help to either player, allowing Mansell to find an important double-up and leaving Haddad in short-stack territory.

Josh Mansell115,000
Sam Haddad71,000
Sam Haddad

Nick pipped

Nick Nicholls has been eliminated in a three-way hand on Table 7.

Nicholls moved all-in for his remaining 30,000 and both Robert Damelian and Martin Ward made the call.

Flop: 56J

Damelian moved all-in and forced Ward out of the hand, leaving Nicholls heads-up for his tournament life.

Damelian: QJ
Nicholls: AQ

Turn: 6
River: 5

Nicholls did not improve, relegated to the rail as we approach our final four tables for the day.

Robert Damelian259,000
Martin Ward243,000
Nick NichollsBUSTED!
Nick Nicholls

Level 13: 1,500/3,000 (3,000)

“They always want to bluff me!”

Those were the words that Martin Ward exclaimed after he made a correct call in a hand on Table 9.

Pre-flop, Ward opened from the cutoff with a bet to 6,000. The player in the small blind made the call and the two went to a flop of 64A. Ward bet 8,000 and the small blind player check-called.

Turn: 7

Both players checked the turn and saw the river card come the 2. The small blind player lead the river with a bet of 10,000, Ward called and his opponent immediately mucked. Ward showed AQ as he collected the pot.

Martin Ward195,000
Martin Ward

Ooi, Ooi, Ooi!

Nick Nicholls opened the action on Table 9 with a raise to 6,500 from UTG. Sean Ooi called from the small blind, and the big blind player elected to defend also.

Flop: 9A6

Action checked to Nicholls, who continued for 12,500 and found a singular caller in the form of Sean Ooi.

Action checked through on the turn, leading Ooi to bet 8,000 on the river as the runout came J,7, getting Nicholls to fold.

Sean Ooi95,800
Nick Nicholls60,800
Sean Ooi

Around the grounds

With another 30 minutes remaining until our next break, let’s update you on how the field is sitting.

Registration closed with a total of 99 unique entries and 22 re-entries, building a live prize pool of $108,900.

Currently, 51 runners remain in play, with average stack at about 95,000.

We’re nearing the business end of the day, and we’ll keep you posted all the way through until we find a Day 1A chip leader for the first event of what is sure to be a fantastic series!

Level 12: 1,500/2,500 (2,500)

Back-to-back Jack attacks

Shortly after cracking aces, Jack Mardanbeigi picked up another victim. An opponent moved all-in on a flop of JQA for a total of 24,500. Mardanbeigi snap-called after flopping the nuts with K10.

All that was seen of the opponent’s cards was a singular J as they left prior to the rest of the runout even being dealt out.

Jack Mardanbeigi204,500

Jack’s back

After being eliminated shortly before the close of reistration, Jack Mardanbeigi’s second bullet is proving much more successful than his first.

We caught action from the flop, where a board showed 10JQ. Mardanbeigi checked to his opponent who moved all-in for 70,000 into a pot of over 30,000.

Mardanbeigi made the call and the two revealed their cards.

Mardanbeigi: J10
Opponent: AA

Turn: 2
River: 6

The runout made no change to each player’s strength on the flop and Mardanbeigi held to eliminate a player, and run his stack up.

Jack Mardanbeigi180,000
Jack Mardanbeigi

Level 11: 1,000/2,000 (2,000)

Chang goes bang

Another victim has been added to Shuai Chang’s hit list after a hand on Table 8. Chang got his chips in the middle, covering his opponent, on a flop of 299.

Chang: J10
Opponent: 66

Runout: Q,10

Chang binked the win, to collect an additional 20,000 to add to his stack from his opponent.

Shuai Chang79,500


Peter Peeters is our latest casualty, knocked out by Evan Mijo in an action packed hand on Table 17.

Peeters opened the action from the button with a raise to 4,000. Mijo defended from the big blind to take it heads-up to a flop of QQ3.

Mijo checked and Peeters continued for 4,500. Mijo called to see a turn of 7, where Mijo check-called Peeters once more, this time for an amount of 8,500.

Mijo checked for a third time when the river came the 10. This time, Peeters moved all-in for his remaining 18,500. Mijo called and showed he had been slow-playing his Q8 to perfection, as Peeters fell into the trap with his A9.

Evan Mijo102,000
Peter PeetersBUSTED!

Level 10: 800/1,600 (1,600)

Power Serge

James Kabourakis has been eliminated from Day 1A of the WSOP Circuit Gold Coast Opening Event.

Kabourakis moved all-in pre-flop from UTG and got a call from Serge Mazza in the cutoff.

Mazza: QQ
Kabourakis: KQ

Kabourakis failed to connect his only overcard on a board that came 84266.

Serge Mazza157,000
James KabourakisBUSTED!

Dinner time

Our players are returning from an extended rest of 30 minutes. Following the dinner break, some additional big stacks are starting to form as the field thins.

This also marks the close of registration for Day 1A with the total number of entries standing at 121 with one more day of play to come before Day 2.

Anthony Cierco182,000
Mitch Bognar148,000
Anthony Harach147,400
Nikki Turner146,300
Shuai Chang146,000
Ash Brown138,000
Alex Lynskey135,200
Martin Ward130,500
Andrej Senic82,000
Nick Nicholls72,800

Level 9: 600/1,200 (1,200)

Harm a Damelian

Robert Damelian has been knocked out at the hands of Andrej Senic.

Damelian moved all-in pre-flop, with a shove for 65,000 from the button over the top of an open from Senic in the hijack. Senic made the call and the two went to showdown.

Damelian: A5
Senic: K10

Board: K2337

Andrej Senic145,000
Robert DamelianBUSTED!
Robert Damelian

Nick picks a couple good spots

Nick Nicholls has been involved in back-to-back hands to spin a respectable stack.

We caught river action on one hand where Nicholls was all-in for 28,300 on a board of 436K10. Jack Mardanbeigi called with K5 only to see he was crushed by Nicholls’ set with 66.

Next, Mardanbeigi moved all-in pre for 12,000 with A8 from the cutoff, with Nicholls calling from the big blind with 77.

The flop 9108 gave Mardanbeigi a good start on the way to a double-up, however, Nicholls open-ended straight draw completed on the K,J runout to send Mardanbeigi packing.

Nick Nicholls89,200
Jack MardanbeigiBUSTED!

Level 8: 500/1,000 (1,000)

Durust avoids a bust

Over on Table 14, UTG+1 opened to 1,600 and gathered three callers from the button and two blinds. On the 4QJ flop, all checked to the Taner Durust on the button who moved all-in for 8,000 and Tommy Handelaar made the call from the small blind.

Durust: AQ
Handelaar: Q10

The runout followed 7,3 to hand Durust the double.

Taner Durust22,000
Tommy Handelaar36,300
Taner Durust

Turner fortunes

Nikki Turner has eliminated an opponent to take her stack well into the six-figure mark.

With all the chips in the middle pre-flop. Turner showed KQ and found herself up against A10.

The board followed with a runout of 53K77 to hand Turner the pot.

Nikki Turner145,000

Level 7: 400/800 (800)

On-Wards and up-Wards

Martin Ward and Adam Thaggard played out a huge hand on Table 17. Pre-flop saw Ward bump the price to 1,200 from the button, getting calls from the two blinds, including Thaggard in the big.

Flop: 547

Thaggard lead for 1,500 and got calls from both the small blind player and Ward.

The 4 on the turn saw the small blind player check-fold after Thaggard once again fired a bet, this time to the tune of 5,500, whilst Ward made the call.

River: K

Thaggard pulled the trigger on the river, and placed a bet of 21,000 in the middle. Ward went into the tank and tried to get a reaction from Thaggard with some speech play involving multiple guesses of Thaggard’s hand.

Thaggard could have been mistaken for a statue, remaining steadfast in maintaining a poker face.

However, Ward eventually made the call after two minutes to see Thaggard turn over 76.

Ward showed 1010 for the win.

Martin Ward112,000
Adam Thaggard23,000
Adam Thaggard

Big hand at a big time

Jozef Ricciardello found Pocket Kings at the right time, and finding two more on a board of QK5K6 to double up through Tommy Handelaar.

Ricciardello got the last of his 33,000 chips in the middle and turned over KK for the goods.

Jozef Ricciardello67,200
Tommy Handelaar38,800

Level 6: 300/600 (600)

Chang-e in fortune

Earl Roberts’ stack is now continuing to slide down the rankings. Shuai Chang three-bet to 3,600 and Roberts defended his open.

The two checked the flop through to a turn on a board showing 28K7, Roberts bet 7,000 before Chang raised to 20,100.

Chang moved all-in on the J river and Roberts snap-folded, showing A2 for the missed flush draw.

Shuai Chang145,500
Earl Roberts56,900
Shuai Chang

Crunching numbers

By our unofficial counts, Earl Roberts looks to be leading the field after the break, despite having a chunk of his stack disappear since we reported his three-way all-in hand.

Australian poker veteran Robert Damelian follows closely behind, whilst recent WPT League Championship Tweed Heads Player of the Series, Sean Ooi, is also off to a solid start, with almost twice starting stack.

Earl Roberts129,000
Robert Damelian123,000
Martin Ward70,800
Sean Ooi76,700
Anthony Cierco63,200
Jack Mardanbeigi61,000
Adam Thaggard47,400
Corey Van Jaarsveldt40,200
Dylan Wayne37,000
Huss Hassan36,000

Level 5: 300/500 (500)

Break time!

It’s the first rest period of the series, as the 90 players comprising the current opening event field head off for a quick bite or drink.

We’ll have some counts momentarily!

Connie collects

Huss Hassan has avoided losing too much in a hand where both he and Connie Graham had strong holdings.

Hassan opened to 1,000 and Graham made the call. The exact same betting actions took place again on the flop of Q710. The turn was the 2 to which both players checked.

River: 8

Both players checked once more in an anti-climactic ending in hindsight after the two revealed their cards.

Graham: QJ
Hassan: AA

Connie Graham51,800
Huss Hassan37,400

Level 4: 200/400 (400)

A very Vegas view

The Star Gold Coast could easily be mistaken for a Las Vegas Casino at the moment, an impressive set design has transported the field today into the home of the WSOP.

Plenty of props, signs, cardboard cut-outs and more have set the theme, topped off by the display of 12 coveted rings to be won.

Fruitless Eden

Paul Eden has come away with poor result after being dealt Pocket Kings against Sam Haddad.

Eden opened the action from middle position with a raise that saw Haddad defend in the big blind.

With a board showing 210278, turn action saw Haddad move all-in on the turn and was snap-called by Eden.

Haddad: 42
Eden: KK

The river failed to deliver the two-outer for Eden, with the 8 securing a double for Haddad.

Sam Haddad36,700
Paul Eden32,300

Level 3: 200/300 (300)

Earl-y success

Earl Roberts has seen to the double knockout of two players on Table 8, with Corey Van Jaarsveldt and Peter Apostolou hitting the rail.

Action opened with Apostolou opening to 3,000 from the button over the top of a few limpers. Three players stuck around to go post-flop.

Flop: 410J

Action checked to Apostolou, who again bet 3,000 and found a call from Roberts before Van Jaarsveldt bumped the price up to 12,000 to which both others players called.

The turn card brought the 3 where Roberts checked to Van Jaarsveldt, who moved all-in for 24,100. Apostolou made the call before Roberts moved in for a slight amount more, to which Apostolou also called.

Van Jaarsveldt: 1010
Roberts: AK
Apostolou: KQ

River: 2

The hearts draw completed for Roberts to scoop a huge pot, rendering Van Jaarsveldt’s set of tens no good.

Earl Roberts181,000
Corey Van JaarsveldtBUSTED!
Peter ApostolouBUSTED!
Earl Roberts

Truscott to run it up

Ian Truscott has dwindled down to an extremely short stack, and with only a total of 800 left to work with, got his chips in the middle soon after.

Two callers checked the action down to the river where a board completed to display 710A26. Craig Trevella turned over his cards in the hope it was good enough to eliminate Truscott.

Truscott: 76
Trevella: A9

Ian Truscott2,500
Craig Trevella38,000

Level 2: 100/200 (200)

A plus for Huss

Huss Hassan is putting an early stamp on this tournament, picking up some small pots to push upwards of starting stack.

Table 8 saw Jack Mardanbeigi open the action with a raise to 500, with calls from both blinds, including Hassan in the small.

The QQ10 flop saw the action check through to a 5 turn. Hussan lead for 2,200 and picked up Mardanbeigi as his only caller to see the 2 on the river.

Hussan piled 6,000 into the middle to get Mardanbeigi to fold as he queried Hassan, “You got lucky on the flop?”

Huss Hassan45,000
Jack Mardanbeigi44,900

Putting the face to the name

Many a familiar face are taking part in the action here at WSOP Circuit Gold Coast, from city locals to players from Sydney, Adelaide and beyond!

Normal service resumes

After a pandemic-induced hiatus, the WSOP Circuit is up and running once more in Australia!

55 players were seated as the cards were shuffled up and dealt for the first time and we are now officially underway in the opening event!

The field will undergo 16 levels at 30 minutes each through until the end of play today, with some breaks in between to stretch their legs and have a breather.

LevelSmall BlindBig BlindBig Blind Ante

Level 1: 100/100 (100)

So you wanna be a champion?

Live from wherever you’re watching in Australia, New Zealand or around the world … hello and welcome to PokerMedia Australia‘s Live Reporting coverage of the 2022 World Series of Poker (WSOP) Circuit series at The Star Gold Coast!

Today is yet another historic day for poker in this country, as it’s the first time that a WSOP event has ever been held in the state of Queensland. 12 tournaments will be held over the course of 13 days, with buy-ins starting from $550 and culminating in the $2,500 buy-in WSOP Circuit Gold Coast Main Event.

Once again, no detail has been left out by the team at Star Poker Gold Coast, who have gone all out with the Vegas-inspired décor, complete with an all-new theme for the Mystery Bounty – and without giving too much away, we reckon it’s just aces and we’re keen to see the dance troupe cut a rug with their new pre-game show.

And speaking of details: all of our winners over the next fortnight will not only take home a stack of cash, but also one of the most coveted prizes in poker: the intricately designed WSOP Circuit ring from internationally-renowned commemorative jeweller, Jostens.

PMA will be providing live updates and daily news articles throughout the course of the series, picking up action from Day 2 of the $5K High Roller and the Mystery Bounty, along with full coverage of the Opening Event and the Main Event, which starts next Thursday. For the full series schedule, click here.


DateTime (AEST)Event
Thu 24 Nov12:30pmOpening Event Day 1A
Fri 25 Nov12:30pmOpening Event Day 1B
Sat 26 Nov11:30amOpening Event Day 2
Sun 27 Nov11:30amOpening Event Day 3
Mon 28 Nov11:30am$5K High Roller Day 2
Thu 1 Dec11:30amMystery Bounty Day 2
2:30pmMain Event Day 1A
Fri 2 Dec12:30pmMain Event Day 1B
Sat 3 Dec12:30pmMain Event Day 1C
Sun 4 Dec11:30amMain Event Day 2
Mon 5 Dec11:30amMain Event Day 3
Tue 6 Dec11:30amMain Event Day 4 (Final Table)*
*Hand-for-hand coverage.

Be sure to follow us from 12:30pm AEST today for all the action, and follow us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Discord for all the latest from on and around the Aussie felt. From all of us at PMA, we wish everyone the best of luck and can’t wait to see you at the tables. May the flop be with you!

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