WPT Australia: Tuesday 26 September 2023

11:30pm: WPT Australia Official Final Table set

It’s over! The WPT Australia Main Event went seven handed for what seemed like an eternity, as the slow structure allowed our remaining players to battle it out with super deep stacks for several levels.

In the end, it took an absolute cooler to close it out; Romain Morvan opening under-the-gun to 200,000, receiving calls from Gary Lin and Yuto Suzuki in the blinds.

Picking up the action again on the board now showing 8932 on the turn; Suzuki shoved after Lin led out. Morvan got out of the way, preserving his chip lead, but Lin snap-called.

What happened next had to be seen; to end this seven handed marathon? SET OVER SET.

22 for Suzuki was bested by 99 of Lin; though still not over as Suzuki could still hit a spade as well – “Set over set and STILL a sweat” as Morvan put it.

Not to be – the J putting an end to Suzuki’s incredible Main Event run.

It’s now France’s Morvan who will carry the chip lead into tomorrow with 7,450,000, followed by Lin, who has held the chip lead repeatedly throughout the entire event. Morvan said to PMA before bagging that he was “taking it step by step” and was very happy to be seeing a result so soon after winning the $5K High Roller at the 2023 APL Million last month.

WPT Australia Main Event Final Table chip counts (AU$8,000 buy in)

SeatPlayerChips
1Gary Lin5,450,000
3Romain Morvan7,450,000
6Richard Lee4,575,000
7Nino Marotta4,300,000
8Martin Kozlov6,600,000
9Ken Demlakian2,000,000

The remaining 6 players will return tomorrow for play to commence at 11:30am. The Final Table will be streamed on the World Poker Tour website, brought to you by Sharehand, with commentary from Tony Dunst and Jamie Kerstetter.

From all of us here at PMA, that marks the end of today’s coverage; we’ll be back tomorrow, also from 11:30, to bring you all of the blog coverage and interviews you’ve come to know and love!


11pm: Main Event chip counts

The WPT Australia Main Event has hit the end of the last level and departed on a 15-minute break.

There are 7 players still remaining, with stacks deep and plenty of big blinds in play.

Here are the current chip counts in order of seating.

PlayerChips
Gary Lin4,000,000
Yuto Suzuki1,250,000
Romain Morvan7,650,000
Richard Lee4,675,000
Nino Marotta4,300,000
Martin Kozlov6,600,000
Ken Demlakian2,000,000

10:15pm: Zhu goes wild; wins $10K World Champs Warm-Up

Zheming Zhu has completed a wholly dominant final table performance at the WPT Australia $10K World Champs Heads-Up, defeating Malcolm Trayner heads up to claim his first Tier One title.

The two players made a deal prior to the start of play, leaving $10,000 and the WPT Passport to play for. Trayner wasted no time, shoving his button on the first hand to a fold from Zhu. The pair then danced around each other for a couple of hands before Zhu shoved his own button, Trayner looked him up, and it was off to the races.

Trayner: KJ
Zhu: 54

Zhu would immediately connect in the window and hold through on the board of 9Q473 to claim the title, the crystal boomerang trophy, and the $273,342 that comes with it.

From all of us here at PMA, congratulations Zheming Zhu, WPT Australia $10K World Champs Warm-Up Champion!

We’ll have interviews with both Zhu and Trayner coming up shortly; Trayner, incidentally, will earn 500 Player Of The Festival points for his second place result; combined with the 275 points he earned in the $5K 8-Max Action Clock event, that puts him in the interim lead for Player Of The Festival!


9:30pm: Zhu vs Trayner; $10K World Champs Warm-Up Heads Up

After Zheming Zhu folded all in shoves from both Michael Gathy and Malcolm Trayner in consecutive hands, Zhu and Gathy would get all the chips in the middle preflop in a flip situation.

Zhu held the slight edge with 55 against the KQ of Gathy, and would shoot further ahead, flopping bottom set on the A510 flop.

Cue celebrations from Gathy’s rail, though, as the turn dropped the J for Broadway; but it was Trayner’s rail who would celebrate loudest as the A hit the river to fill Zhu up, eliminating Gathy in third place and giving Trayner the pay jump – though he is now facing a 10-to-1 chip deficit against the rampaging Zhu.

$10K World Champs Warm-Up payouts remaining

PlacePayout
1st$263,342*
2nd$199,002*
*denotes deal heads-up; players are playing for $10,000+WPT Passport for 1st

$10K World Champs Warm-Up chip counts

PlayerChips
Zheming Zhu21,950,000
Malcolm Trayner2,450,000

8:45pm: Road To Vegas registration closed

The $1,000 Road To Vegas Event 14 has now closed for new registrations, with the prize pool having being announced and posted around the room.

The event has attracted a total of 187 entries, with 69 remaining. 45 will make the money, with a min cash worth $1,683.

Up top, though, is $45,758 PLUS a $6K WPT Prime Passport. Right now, it appears the chip lead is being held by Janet Wyvill; as she sits with around 450,000 in front of her – almost SEVEN times the average stack of ‘just’ 81K!

The WPT Australia Main Event continues with seven players remaining. Yuto Suzuki is the current short stack with around 18 big blinds.

The $10K World Champs Warm-Up is now down to 4 and it’s Zheming Zhu now in pole position after eliminating Ehsan Amiri with A-9 besting Amiri’s T-T after an Ace hit the turn. Zhu now has around 11.6 million for a dominating chip lead.

The $5K High Roller PLO has 90 minutes left of late registration; so far, the tournament has attracted 129 entries including 38 re-entries, and 67 players remain.


7:10pm: $10K World Champs Warm-Up down to 6

Michael Sleiman got the last of his chips into the middle of the table with 66, but found himself in bad shape against the 1010 of his opponent.

The board ran out J3K9Q and with that, Sleiman was eliminated in 7th place.

The Main Event is currently on a break; all players are now guaranteed a six figure score – including the recently eliminated Kobayashi who was paid just over $106K for his 7th place finish.

PlayerChips
Michael SleimanBUSTED!

6:40pm: KO!

The Main Event is now just one player away from bagging and tagging for the end of Day 4… and the Official Final Table of 6!

Hirokazu Kobayashi open shoved for his last 430,000 and action folded around to Martin Kozlov.

Kozlov elected to flat call, before everyone else got out of the way.

Kozlov: 88
Kobayashi: 22

Kozlov had Kobayashi in a world of hurt and ended it quickly, turning Kobayashi dead on the K1035Q board to reduce the field to 7.

Just one more!

PlayerChips
Martin Kozlov4,770,000
Hirokazu KobayashiBUSTED!

Miracles do happen

After Romain Morvan opened to 100,000 from late position, Richard Lee raised to 875,000 – leaving just 30,000 behind – from the small blind. Nino Moratta made the call from the big blind and Morvan folded.

On the J3J flop, the rest of the chips went in with Lee on the cusp of elimination holding 77 against the QQ of Moratta.

The 10 turn changed nothing, but the miracle 7 on the river was exactly what Lee needed to around 2 million.


Marotta coolers Kozlov to double through 

Nino Marotta has doubled through Martin Kozlov after a massive pre-flop clash that saw him get all of his chips into the middle. It was a classic cooler – Kozlov holding KK and Marotta AA, with no help arriving for Kozlov on the J-high board.

Kozlov is still strong through with more than 4 million in chips even after that hand.

Martin Kozlov4,300,000
Nino Marotta3,700,000

Peter Lin first to fall at unofficial final table

Just a few hands into the unofficial final table, Peter Lin found himself all-in and needing help to stay in contention for the WPT Australia title.

The hand began with Lin opening to 100,000 from UTG before it was folded around to Romain Morvan in the small blind. Morvan announced he was all-in, with Lin thinking for about 20 seconds before making the call.

It was off to the races with Morvan holding JJ and Lin the AQ, and when the board ran out K76J9 we were down to eight remaining.

Peter Lin


5pm: The WPT Australia $10K World Champs Warm-Up Final Table has also been reached!

The $10K World Champs Warm-Up event has reached their final table minutes after the Main Event; in this event it’s Alex Trevallion who continues with the chip lead after his world class call against Waroom Cho earlier this afternoon, but he’s very closely followed by Michael Gathy – who’s less than one big blind behind him.

Making his second final table of the series is Malcolm Trayner; Trayner carried the chip lead into the $5K 8-Max Action Clock final table last week, and will carry an above-average stack into this.

SeatPlayerChips
1Alex Trevallion4,480,000
2Ricky Vikas1,390,000
3Malcolm Trayner2,755,000
4Ehsan Amiri2,190,000
5Jin Hoon Lee2,680,000
6Dong He1,200,000
7Michael Sleiman2,460,000
8Michael Gathy4,465,000
9Zheming Zhu1,480,000

4:45pm: The unofficial WPT Australia Main Event Final Table has been set!

Following the rapid eliminations of Josh Hutchins in 11th and WPT Vietnam champion Hamish Crawshaw in 10th, we have reached the unofficial WPT Australia Main Event Final Table!

SeatPlayerChips
1Gary Lin6,945,000
2Yuto Suzuki2,540,000
3Romain Morvan4,910,000
4Hirokazu Kobayashi780,000
5Peter Lin915,000
6Richard Lee1,185,000
7Nino Marotta2,125,000
8Martin Kozlov6,505,000
9Ken Demlakian4,420,000

Gary Lin has re-taken the chip lead once again, though Martin Kozlov isn’t far behind – Kozlov surrendered a pot to Romain Morvan shortly before the final table was set to drop into second.

Hirokazu Kobayashi and Peter Lin both have under one million in chips, with the average stack currently 3,333,333.

The players have been sent on a break by tournament staff while we set up for the action; we have also confirmed that we will be playing down to 6 players today – the official Final Table – before bagging up, with those final 6 players returning tomorrow for the televised final table brought to you by Sharehand.


4:30pm: $10K World Champs Warm-Up bubble burst

All in and a call!

All preflop on Table 14 as Ankit Ahuja got the remainder of his chips in the middle with A10 and found himself well behind the AK of Alex Trevallion.

The board of QJ7J5 missed both players and Ahuja took his leave whilst the remainder of the field is now guaranteed $21,935, and they are playing for a first place prize of $283,342 PLUS a $20K WPT World Champs package.

The $5K High Roller PLO is now up to 50 entrants and counting.


4pm: Main Event down to 12, Kovlov takes chip lead

Two quick eliminations in quick succession on Table 7!

Motoyoshi Okamura had just been moved from Table 1 to Table 7 to replace the eliminated Yita Choong (15th), and has now been eliminated in 13th by Peter Lin.

Just prior to that, Ireland’s Dylan Kehoe was eliminated in 14th by the number 12 on Australia’s All Time Money List, Martin Kozlov. With that elimination, Kozlov moves up to around 6.5 million; taking the tournament chip lead in the process.

Ken Demlakian found a full double with 85 against the AJ of Josh Hutchins, with a full house on the 52425 board on Table 1, whilst WPT Vietnam Champion Hamish Crawshaw also doubled with 88 against the 77 of Romain Morvan, the board missing both players and the superior pocket pair holding up.

The $10K World Champs Warm-Up is now on the stone cold bubble with 16 players remaining; Alex Trevallion still holds the chip lead with 2.93 million, while it’s Victor Shuchlieib (490,000) and Ankit Ahuja (700,000) feeling the pressure as the shortest stacks in the room.

On the north side of The Star Gold Coast Poker room, the $5K High Roller PLO event has kicked off with 38 entrants. The father-son duo of Joe and Daniel Hachem are in the field, and local PLO grinders Justin Ayoub and Jake Parsons have taken their seats. Maddocks Mindset’s Mike Maddocks is in attendance, and Armon van Wijk has jumped in after being eliminated from the $10K World Champs Warm-Up.

Late registration for the $5K High Roller PLO will remain open until 10:30pm local time.

The $1,000 buy in WPT Road To Vegas (Event 14) has also commenced with 104 entrants so far; 95 remain and late registration will close off at approximately 7pm local time.


3:30pm: Main Event returns, 15 left

After a triple elimination – one from each table at roughly the same time – the Main Event is now down to just 15 players remaining. They recently took a 15-minute break, and PMA took the time to get an accurate list of players and chips remaining.

Table 1

SeatPlayerChips
1Justin Steinbrenner395,000
2Ken Demlakian2,000,000
3Gary Lin5,255,000
4Motoyoshi Okamura2,120,000
5Hamish Crawshaw455,000
6Richard Lee1,755,000
7Josh Hutchins1,710,000
8Yuto Suzuki2,155,000

Table 7

SeatPlayerChips
1
2Martin Kozlov3,435,000
3Nino Marotta800,000
4Peter Lin1,045,000
5Hirokazu Kobayashi1,100,000
6Romain Morvan4,660,000
7Yita Choong2,065,000
8Dylan Kehoe605,000

It’s Gary Lin who continues to hold the chip lead at this stage of play; but Romain Morvan is chasing and chasing hard.

Morvan, who has gone from strength to strength over the past couple of years since first catching PMA‘s attention, is keen to record his biggest result ever here at WPT Australia; he commented to our Live Reporter that he is “being selfish today, not answering messages”. Can’t say we blame him!

*since the break, Yita Choong has been eliminated by the hand of Martin Kovlov (pun intended) – he is replaced on Table 7 by Motoyoshi Okamura.


Riffing with Ragozzini

PokerMedia Australia sat down with one of Australia’s most successful players of recent times, Sean Ragozzini, to discuss his journey to the top of the poker world.

Best known for his very deep run in the 2021 WSOP Main Event – where he finished 11th for US$585,000 – Sean also won the $20k High Roller at the 2019 Sydney Champs and the $5k Challenge at the 2021 WPT Deepstacks among many other deep runs.


2:30pm: Ten out of ten for Trevallion

The $10K World Champs Warm-Up event is on a 15 minute break – though, for Alex Trevallion, it will be more like ten minutes after the last hand continued well into the break.

With the blinds at 15,000/30,000 (30,000), action was opened by Wooram Cho – a minimum raise to 60,000 from middle position saw calls by Chris Hillman and Ashton Campbell in late position before Trevallion, in the big blind, put the squeeze on all three; a 3-bet to 340,000.

Cho tanked for a few minutes, then shoved with all other players covered. Hillman appeared to agonise over his decision before letting it go, and Campbell spun his cards quickly into the muck.

A bemused Trevallion then hit the tank himself; a couple of players from the bubble, he was facing a massive decision.

A few minutes later, he slammed a stack forward and found himself ahead but flipping – his 1010 ahead of Cho’s AJ for now.

The rail was stunned as the board rained down 579K7 to grant Trevallion a full double; Trevallion now sits with 3,145,000 – more than double the 1.25 million average.


2pm: Morvan puts an end to Tang’s quest

We WILL have a new champion at WPT Australia, after last year’s winner David Tang was just eliminated at the hands of France’s Romain Morvan.

Morvan opened preflop with AK, before Tang 3-bet from a few seats over. Morvan jammed on the defending champion, who snap called with QQ.

Morvan would take an early lead and hold through on the full board of 3K9610 and chipped up to around 4 million, well among the chipleaders, while Tang collected around $30K for 21st place in his valiant effort to defend his title.

On the other side of the room, the $10K World Championship event is fast approaching the bubble, after a scurry of action on Table 14 saw 6 players eliminated at speed including the below hand with Ian Bobbin and Ehsan Amiri.

There are currently 21 players remaining, and of those, 15 will finish in the money.


12:30pm: Ethan “Rampage” Yau took down Mini Main; $10K Day 2 commences

The $10K World Championship Warm-Up event has kicked off Day 2 on the other side of the room; 30 players remain, led by Zheming Zhu with 1,745,000 and a handful of other ‘millionaires’ in Amin Riyazati, Michael Sleiman, Ehsan Amiri, Po Hu, Shan Huang, James Mendoza, Ricky Vikas, Ankit Ahuja, and Armon van Wijk.

Amiri has already been into the action; a shout echoing across the room as Ian Bobbin was eliminated in cruel fashion; an open from Bobbin was met with a 3-bet from Amiri on the button. Bobbin 4-bet jammed with his AK, Amiri snapped him off with QQ, only to see the AK7 flop put him well behind. A J on the turn gave Amiri some additional outs and it was the 10 that sent the rail nuts.

In other news from last night, Ethan “Rampage” Yau outlasted all other entrants in a marathon Mini Main Event; defeating local Jack Drake heads-up to claim the title after a truly international final table.

PositionNameNationalityPrize
1stEthan “Rampage” YauUSA$148,910 
2ndJack DrakeAustralia$106,254 
3rdFlorencio CampomanesPhillipines$68,354 
4thMasato Yokosawa Japan$45,793 
5thAlex LeeAustralia$35,220 
6thTaylor Grube USA$29,188 
7thKernal HusainAustralia$24,497 
8thShane StarkAustralia$19,806 
9thAmir Minagar Australia$15,190 

PMA will endeavour to speak with Yau before series end for what will now be a winners interview (to be fair to us, we were planning on speaking to him anyway)!


11:30am: Main Event Day 4 underway

Our final 24 players have taken their seats, unbagged their chips, and are ready for Day 4 of the WPT Australia Main Event!

Several notable names remain, including 2022 Australian GPI Player Of The Year Yita Choong (1,120,000), and Martin Kozlov (1,900,000), who is playing his first major tournament since the 2020 Aussie Millions and sat down for an interview with PMA yesterday.

But it’s all eyes on David Tang, who is still in with a shout of going back-to-back and defending his 2022 WPT Australia Main Event title – Tang returns with 990,000 in chips today.

Leading the pack, though, is Gary Lin with 4,435,000; more than triple the average stack of 1,250,000. Lin scored a huge pot in the latter stages of last night with pocket eights, flopping a set and besting the top pair-top kicker of Michael Rattigan.

Players recommenced with four minutes left of Level 13; the clock has now ticked over to Level 14: 15,000/25,000 (25,000) and we will be playing down to a final table today.


Finishing line in sight

From wherever you’re watching in Australia, New Zealand or around the world, hello and welcome to PokerMedia Australia!

Our social media and blog coverage of the WPT Australia series at The Star Gold Coast will resume from 11:30am AEST. While you wait, check out our latest news articles, blogs and Live Reporting archives, bookmark our website, and give us a like and follow across all our socials to get access to all of our content.

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