Aussie Millions Event #4, Day 1 - James Potter in Control
Mere hours after his victory in the Mixed Stud event at the 2008 Aussie Millions, Jimmy 'gobboboy' Fricke ventured back into the poker room at the Crown Casino in Melbourne to try his luck in the $1,100 Limit Hold'em tournament. Fricke was joined by 122 other players, including Jozef Berec, Brandon Schaefer, Billy 'The Croc' Argyros and Anna Wroblewski. Fricke's momentum failed to carry him through Day 1 of Event #4, as he joined Wroblewski, Berec, Schaefer and all but eight other players on the rail at the end of the day.
James 'Welcome Back' Potter finished the day with the chip lead, with close to a third of the chips in play. "It's nice to make the final table. And with a healthy stack too," Potter said. One of Potter's early hands featured a three-way pot with Sol Bergren and Brandon Schaefer that ended Schaefer's day early. On a final board of A-10-8-5-4, Schaefer got all his chips in with , only to see Bergren's send him to the rail.
Billy 'The Croc' Argyros was another early elimination when his A-K was outflopped by the same hand twice on a board of . All the money went in preflop, and Argyros was eliminated as his opponents, both holding A-Q, chopped up his chips. Jimmy Fricke's attempt at back-to-back Aussie Millions victories ended early when he ran pocket fives into David Lacchia's pocket jacks.
Warren Pritchard was the bubble boy for Event #4 when he was all in from the big blind holding . His lone opponent held and picked up a four on the flop to send Pritchard home in 19th place. Once the bubble burst, several players busted in rapid fashion, including Graeme 'Kiwi G' Putt, who finished second in Event #3 and was trying for back-to-back final tables. Putt fell short, finishing in 16th for $1,230.
Kenna James logged his best finish of the 2008 Aussie Millions in this event, finishing in 14th place. He got the last of his chips in with against Simon Morris's . The flop came down , and James needed help. The on the turn wasn't enough, and the on the river sent James to the cashier's cage for his $1,230 prize money. Marc Goodwin held on at the final-table bubble before he ran into Jamie Pickering's on a flop of . Goodwin pushed all in with , Pickering called, and Goodwin was eliminated. The final-table seating assignments and chip counts looked like this following Goodwin's elimination:
Seat 1: Jamie Pickering - 85,000
Seat 2: Simon Morris - 76,000
Seat 3: Martin Cardno - 11,000
Seat 4: Michael Lipari - 22,000
Seat 5: Jim Sachinidis - 33,000
Seat 6: Ben 'Buford' Edwards - 45,500
Seat 7: Ivan Sop - 53,500
Seat 8: David Kacchia - 31,500
Seat 9: James Potter - 139,000
Since the pace of play had progressed more quickly than anticipated, tournament staff allowed a bit of final-table play on Day 1. This left Martin Cardno just enough time in the day to get the last of his chips in with pocket queens and run into Jamie Pickering's aces. Queens were Cardno's throughout Day 1, and they sent him home in ninth place ($2,460).
With Cardno's elimination, the tournament staff halted play for the day, leaving seven players chasing James Potter's healthy lead. Potter returns to the final table on Day 2 with nearly 50% more chips than Jamie Pickering and Simon Morris, his closest pursuers.