After a relatively small field on Day 1a there were slight worries that the prize pool guarantee may not be reached, however Day 1b was a massive success in regards to attendance as 181 players registered. This meant that the guarantee was in fact met which would have pleased the slightly nervous organizers.
As the day came to an end we were left with Yanqin Huang topping the leaderboard with 112,925 chips, though he only had a very minimal lead over the next four players. Sebastian Benz held 112,625, Lin Zhu was close behind them with 110,775, Hyung Sun “Sunny” Jung had 107,850 and Kenneth Wong wasn’t far behind with 106,950.
As we already stated, the prize pool was eventually reached and in the end was surpassed quite comfortable to give a final total of HK$4,818,960. This will be spread out across the top 31 players with the winner being awarded a staggering HK$1,108,500.
One thing that is for sure already in this event is that there will be a different winner this year; this is due to all of the previous winners being eliminated. Devon Tang, Raiden Kan and Julian Hasse were all hoping to be the first players to hold the title twice, though they will now have to wait until next year to realize that ambition.
We also lost the Asian queens of PokerStars Celina Lin and Vivian Im, who were both eliminated quite early on Day 1b. Lin was already a short stack when she pushed all-in with pocket jacks and run right into pocket queens. Im was also a little bit unfortunate when she hit trip kings on the flop with Kh-Jd, but was outkicked by one of the day’s leaders Sebastian Benz who was holding the Ad-Kd.
Benz had an excellent day and that pot was just one of many as he finished the day just 300 chips behind the chip leader Yanqin Huang.
Yanqin Huang – 112,925
Sebastian Benz – 112,625
Lin Zhu – 110,775
Hyung Sun “Sunny” Jung – 107,850
Kenneth Wong – 106,950
Xijie Sun – 96,225
Satrya Teja – 96,025
Robert Streatfeild – 77,025
Liang Yu – 74,050
Bjorn Yin Nam Li – 73,175
Some of the other notable players to make it through to Day 2 from Day 1a include Team PokerStars Pros Raymond Wu and Bryan Huang, whilst we still have the 2011 runner up Victor Chong hoping to go one better this time around.
There will be 123 players returning for Day 2 at the Grand Waldo Casino, with each every one of them hoping to be the player to take down the title and huge first place prize.