Day 1b of the PokerStars.com Asia Pacific Poker Tour Macau Main Event saw a larger field with more big names and more big grins, most notably the face of Bertrand "ElkY" Grospellier, who arrived to the event in full "Joker" makeup, complete with green hair. Joining Grospellier in the field, if not also in makeup, were Chad Brown, Mel Judah, Julian Powell and Vanessa Rousso. Last week's APT Macau winner Yevgeniy Timoshenko played on Day 1b, as did runner-up Casey Kastle, along with former WSOP world champions Johnny Chan and Mansour Matloubi. All told, 185 players joined the event on Day 1b, bringing the total entrants to 310, with a prize pool of over $900,000 with one Day 1 flight remaining. By day's end it would be Hong Kong's David Steicke and PokerNews' own Dennis Waterman atop the leader board.
Last week's luck didn't hold for Casey Kastle, who busted early on Day 1b. Kastle saw a flop of with Sam Jessop, and fired out at the flop. Jessop raised, and Kastle moved all in with . Jessop thought for a moment before calling with for middle set, well ahead of Kastle's flush draw. No diamond showed on the turn or river, and Kastle departed. He was soon joined on the rail by the man who outlasted him last week, Yevgeniy Timoshenko.
Timoshenko, looking for a repeat of his APT victory, busted at the hands of Mel Judah early on Day 1b. On a flop of , Timoshenko led out and Judah called. Both players checked the turn, and Timoshenko moved all in when the came on the river. Judah called with A-7, good enough to send Timoshenko home early. Judah was also eliminated on Day 1b, running into Bertrand "The Joker" Grospellier midway through the day. Grospellier made top pair with A-Q, and Judah headed to the rail.
The bigger names fared well on Day 1b, with Grospellier making it to Day 2 with plenty of high-powered company. Among the survivors were Johnny Chan, Thomas Bihl, Vanessa Rousso and Chad Brown, who took the chip lead early in the day and rode his big stack to a top-ten finish. PokerNews contributing writer Dennis Waterman ("Inside the Tour") also enjoyed a strong opening day. David Steicke finished Day 1b with the chip lead, thanks in part to a big pot late in the day where he busted 2008 APT Manila Champion David Saab. All the money went in on a board of , and Saab showed for trips with top kicker, but he was drawing thin when Steicke tabled for the flopped set and the turned boat. The river was not one of Saab's outs, and he headed to the rail as Day 1b drew to a close.
The top ten chip stacks looked like this at the end of Day 1b:
David Steicke — 87,700
Dennis Waterman — 75,800
Steffan Van Khoa Da — 59,300
Andrew Pantling — 54,800
Mikael Rosen — 54,000
Charles Chua — 49,100
Aditya Agarwal — 45,200
William Wright — 45,200
Mark Griffiths — 42,400
Edward Sabat — 41,400
Join PokerNews at 1:30 PM local time on Wednesday (Tuesday overnight in North America) for all the live updates from the final Day 1 flight of the PokerStars.com APPT Macau championship.