It took nine hours but the penultimate day of the MPC25 Red Dragon is complete. There were 59 poker hopefuls who returned at the start of play but now we have only nine remaining. Leading the charge into a stacked final table tomorrow will be frontrunner Shuaiyang Qiu. He started proceedings with 585,000 and managed to parlay that into a commanding 2,840,000.
Amazingly Qiu is chip leader of the final nine in this record 1,145-player field and yet has no live cashes to his name. Now after three stellar days on the felt Qiu has jostled himself into pole position to take home the HK$2,509,000 top prize (which includes a HK$100,000 2016 ACOP Main Event seat) and the illustrious Red Dragon trophy.
Trailing Qiu by just 40,000 is back-to-back Red Dragon final tablist and previous Red Dragon champion Tom Alner. The Englishman has had a ludicrously impressive run in Red Dragon events – earning the crown and HK$823,000 back in 2013 and currently fresh off an eighth place finish in this very tournament back in February.
Before these two and the other lucky seven could make the final table though one not-so-lucky individual had to bubble it. That honor went to Thailand’s Paphawin Laodee. He was eliminated at the hands of tournament crusher Jack Salter who made a full house with Q♠Q♦ on a board of 10♥K♦10♦Q♣J♥. Laodee made Broadway on the end with A♣6♣ and moved in only to be snapped off and sent home by Salter.
Team PokerStars Pro Celina Lin also came up painfully short of a final table finish – she was two places off making her 4th one in the Red Dragon. Lin got her money in good with A♠4♣ against the K♥Q♦ of Liang Song but couldn’t hold when a nasty river card landed on the 8♦7♣10♣7♠K♦. Her 11th place finish earned her HK$131,000.
For the nine who did make the cut though it’s right back here tomorrow from 3pm to battle it out until a champion is crowned. We’ll have a blow by blow rundown at the PokerStars Blog. We hope you can join us then! In the meantime you can see how the final nine stack up below.
|Seat||Last Name||First Name||Country||PokerStars Status||Chip Count|
|3||Salter||Jack Zi Yang||UK||PokerStars Qualifier||1,755,000|
PokerStars Blog reporting in Macau brought to you by Brad Kain. Photos by Kenneth Lim Photography courtesy of PokerStars LIVE Macau.