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Aussie Millions -- Main Event Day 1B

Professionals Hit the Rail Hard on Second Day-One Flight in Melbourne

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Alexander KostritsynThe theme throughout day 1B at the 2009 Aussie Millions Poker Championship $10,500 AUD no-limit hold’em main event was one of David slaying Goliath at the Crown Casino. Many professional poker players entered the day, but few would remain when the final bell rang. Here is a list of the talented and notable players who fell during the day: Jeffrey Lisandro, Liya Gerasimova, Bill Jordanou, 2008 Aussie Millions champion Alexander Kostritsyn, Chris Ferguson, David Bach, Erik Seidel, Ross Boatman, Jason Gray, Tony Bloom, Tony “Bond18” Dunst, Michael Watson, and Harry Demetriou.

The side story to the fall of the pros was the luck of the Aussie dealers. Quads were dealt a fitting four times during the day, reinforcing Australia’s nickname as “the lucky country.” The lucky recipients included Casey Kastle, who was given the assistance of three fives on the board to go with the one in his hand in a pot against Jeff Madsen, Saidal Wardak, who received quad sixes, and Matt Vengrin, who took an early lead on day 1B after receiving quad jacks. The final recipient of quads during day 1B was Sam Vakili. He held four ladies to win a pot that shot him up the leader board near the end of play. The fourth queen on the river increased his stack to 80,000, and he finished the night with 106,300.

There were 202 players in all who began the day, and 102 remained when the day came to a close. A few pros trickled through the cracks and staked their claim at a deep run in the tournament, including a young Russian superstar. Ivan Demidov came into the day in a sleep walk. He cat-napped between hands for much of the first level, but he came on strong at the end to finish with 81,925. Other pros who survived included Michael Mcdonald, Annette Obrestad, Neil Channing, Marty Smyth, Mel Judah, and Jeff Madsen. Here is a look at the top of the leader board when play ended:

Sunset in MelbourneBrett Daphne: 120,250
Josh Malone: 112,400
Sam Vakili: 106,300
Ali Ghezelbash: 92,575
Michael Tureniec: 91,625
Josh Onas: 89,700
Ivan Demidov: 81,925
Annica Ivert: 81,575
Michael "Timex" Mcdonald: 80,675
Ota Hrdina: 78,850

Day 1C begins tomorrow at 12:30 p.m. AEDT (5:30 p.m. PST), and it will be a good one. Tomorrow will have the largest first-flight field, as is usually the case in large buy-in poker tournaments, and it will also have the most star power. Players confirmed for tomorrow include 2005 world champion Joe Hachem, Phil Laak, Jennifer Tilly, Nam Le, J.C. Tran, Gus Hansen, Phil Ivey, John Juanda, actor Michael Vartan, AFL football star Luke Hodge, boxing champion Jeff Fenech, and tennis pro Mark Philippoussis, as well as a flood of other poker pros. Tune into CardPlayer.com to follow along in live updates, chip counts, and photos from Melbourne, Australia.