The PokerStars.net Asia Pacific Poker Tour made history today as the biggest poker tournament held in the Philippines. In all, 319 players entered the two Day 1 flights, creating a juicy prize pool of about $600,000 U.S. Originally, the event was intended to be capped at 300 players, but because of overwhelming demand, that mark was exceeded.
Day 1b saw more big-name players come to the felt, with Team PokerStars members Celina Lin, Tony Hachem, Bryan Huang, Jonathan Lin, Tae Jun Noh and Eric Assadourian all making appearances along with local stars Neil Arce and Ramil Tandoc and other notable players like Tony "Bond18" Dunst, Nam, Tommy Le, Phillip Willcocks, Dennis Huntly, Tom Hall and Aaron Benton.
It probably wasn’t the best day to be an Australian; Eric Assadourian, Aaron Benton and Dennis Huntly all made their exits before the end of the second level. Steve Bouya and the newly engaged Tony Hachem followed close behind them.
Being a member of Team PokerStars brought no more luck. Tae Jun Noh hit the rail early, while Jonathan Lin and Bryan Huang spent most of the day with less than half of their original chip stacks. Celina Lin barely moved from her starting bank.
The day became the "day of the lower profile player"; the three biggest stacks coming from well outside the well-known players. American Brian Bumpas (143,000) finished as flight chip leader with 143,000. Jerry Delisle (135,000) and Mike Gaertner (128,100) were close behind.
In all, 108 players survived Day 1b. Tomorrow, the remaining 158 players from the two Day 1 flights will play another seven-level day. Play will begin at noon in the Philippines (GMT+8). Be sure to catch all the live reporting action here on PokerNews.