While Phil Ivey was busy winning his historic ninth World Series of Poker bracelet in the final table area of the Crown Casino on Wednesday, 43 players returned to the poker room for Day 2 of Event #4, a $5,000 No-Limit Hold'em Six-Maxtournament. The official prize pool wasn't announced until Wednesday when players learned that the eventual winner would receive $233,800 along with the fourth WSOP gold bracelet of this WSOP Asia Pacific.
Entering the unofficial final table as the chip leader will be Aaron Lim with 600,000. He's followed closely by Aussie poker pro Brendon Rubie, considered one of the top tournament players in the Asia-Pacific Region. Rubie will take 577,000 in chips to the final table and attempt to get the monkey off Australia's back; the first three WSOP APAC bracelets have been won by U.S. players, and Aussies have finished runner-up twice.
WSOP APAC Event #4 Final Table
Several notables were in contention when the day began but were eliminated before the 18-player money bubble. Among those leaving empty-handed were J.C. Tran, Bertrand "ElkY" Grospellier, Russell Thomas, Jean-Robert Bellande, Mike Watson and Oleksii Kovalchuk.
Well-known online pros Ben Wilinofsky and Jonathan Karamilikis led the way entering Day 2, but neither managed to reach the final table. Wilinofsky ran into trouble against Rubie after the money bubble burst and exited in 14th place. According to WSOP.com, the two pros were facing a board of when Rubie led out for 62,000 into a pot of approximately 70,000, and Wilinofsky took several minutes before deciding to call. Rubie showed pocket aces and Wilinofsy mucked. A short while later, Wilinofksy four-bet shoved into Andy Lee's , ending the run for the former European Poker Tour champion.
Karamalikis, who was looking to best his runner-up finish in Event #1, exited in 13th at the hands of Billy Seri. Karamalikis raised to 5,100 preflop and Seri re-raised to 14,000. Action folded back to Karamalikis and he moved all-in for 89,500. Seri called quickly tables his . Karamilikis needed help with his , and he immediately got some on the flop. The Aussie needed a heart to stay alive, but the turn and river sent him to the rail with his second cash of the series, this one for $10,354.
Lee continued constructing a huge stack from there, knocking out David Yan in ninth place in one of the biggest pots of the tournament. Two hands after Lee took about 70,000 from Yan, the two went to battle again, this time before the flop. Following a series of raises, Yan found himself all-in and at risk with against Lee's . The spelled disaster for Lee, but the on the turn vaulted him back into the lead. The on the river gave both a full house, but Lee's queens-full send Yan to the rail.
Lee then handed over a large part of his stack over to Rubie. Lee opened the hand with a raise to 13,000 from the button and Rubie called. The flop was and both players check to see the hit the turn. After Rubie checked again, Lee bet 14,000, and Rubie fired back with a check-raise to 38,000. Lee called. When the landed on the river, Rubie bet 67,000 and Lee decided to call. Rubie flipped over for a flush, giving him the pot and a nice chip lead heading into the final level.
The last player eliminated to end the day was Binh Nguyen, who was all-in preflop for his last 100,000 with pocket nines against Lee's pocket kings. The gave Lee the pot and set up an unofficial final table to be aired via livestream at WSOP.com on Thursday. Nguyen earned $19,940 for eighth place.
Action will resume at 12:30 p.m. local time on Thursday. Stay tuned to PokerNews.com as we bring you all of the highlights from the final table!