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APPT -- Dong-bin Han Wins Philippines Main Event

Han Takes home $148,200 in Prize Money

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The final day of the 2009 PokerStars Asia Pacific Poker Tour stop in Cebu, Philippines, started on Sunday when the final nine players took their seats at the final table. These players were all who remained from the field of 319 players after three days of poker. Two well-known professionals cashed in the event. Nam Le busted out in 12th place, and his brother Tommy Le cashed in 28th place. Tony Dunst, Tony Hachem, and PokerStars Team Asia pros Raymond Wu and Daniel Schreiber were the big names who played in the preliminary days of the event but did not make the money.

The eliminations began early at the final table when Alexandr Tokholiz moved all in with A-8 during the first level of the day, only to discover that he was dominated by the A-10 of Dong-bin Han. The board delivered the other two irrelevant aces in the deck, and Tokholiz was eliminated in ninth place ($10,500) on the hand. An ace was in the mix once again when Phillips Willcocks decided to call all in with A-K. Mark Pagsuyin had put him to the decision and he flipped over pocket queens after Willcocks made the call. This time, the board delivered no aces, and Willcocks was eliminated in eighth place ($14,000).

Han scored his second elimination next. He and Nick Pronk had each committed 204,000 to a pot before the flop was dealt 9Spade Suit 8Diamond Suit 6Spade Suit. Han checked the flop, Pronk bet 270,000, and Han reraised all in. Pronk made the all-in call and turned over 6Diamond Suit 5Diamond Suit. Han showed down AClub Suit JHeart Suit. The turn and river fell 4Club Suit and AHeart Suit to bail out Han, and he eliminated Pronk in seventh place ($17,500). Han continued his roll after that by eliminating Pagsuyuin in sixth place ($23,000). Once again, he had his opponent dominated, this time holding A-10 in the hole over the A-9 of Pagsuyuin. Han continued his good run when he woke up with pocket queens after Terry Fan decided to move all in with pocket eights. The queens held and Han claimed his fourth victim, busting Fan in fifth place ($29,000).

A short-stacked Kevin Clark was the next player to move all in, pinning his tournament hopes on A-9 preflop. David Hilton called him down with pocket nines, and the ace that Clark needed never arrived on the board. Clark was eliminated in fourth place ($40,728), and Hilton jump-started his run to the final heads-up match. Before the final could begin, one more player had to make an exit, and once again it was Han that played the role of grim reaper. Sim Somyoung’s tournament life came down to a coin flip when he decided to move all in preflop with K-J suited and Han made the call holding pocket eights. The eights held up, and Somyoung was eliminated in third place ($58,000).

The chip stacks were close to even when heads-up play began. Han held a slight lead with 3.27 million over the 3.11 million of Hilton. The tables turned quickly for Hilton, who won a huge hand with a full house over Han’s trip kings to grow his chip lead to 4.6 million. Han quickly fought back and took back the chip lead back within the hour. Han then applied constant pressure on Hilton, which eventually led to a victory. On the final hand, Hilton limped, Han raised, and Hilton reraised all in preflop. Han made the call with pocket queens, and Hilton turned over Q-J. The board kept things interesting by falling 10-9-4-9-10, but Hilton ultimately missed the straight he needed and was eliminated in second place ($101,800). Han won the tournament and the $148,200 first-place prize. It was his first major live tournament experience, and he made it a memorable one by snagging his first major tournament title.

Final-Table Results:

1: Dong-bin Han — $148,200
2: David Hilton - $101,800
3: Sim Somyung -
$58,000
4: Kevin Clark — $40,728
5: Terry Fan — $29,000
6: Mark Pagsuyuin — $23,000
7: Nick Pronk — $17,500
8: Phillip Willcocks — $14,000
9: Alexandr Tikholiz — $10,500

The next APPT event will take place in Sydney, Australia, Dec. 1-6.