The Macau Poker Cup 23 (MPC23) set a record for its summer series as 945 players took to the felt to create a HK$9,899,820 prize pool, which nearly doubled the HK$5 million guarantee. After three days of play, which included a final table that lasted less than six hours, China's Yue Feng Pan emerged victorious to capture the HK$2,108,000 (~$272,000 USD) first-place prize and give China their eighth Red Dragon title.
"I feel so happy right now," said Pan, a 30-year-old primarily cash game player. "I just love the competition of tournaments and being able to prove myself against all my opponents."
MPC23 Red Dragon - Final Table Results
|1||Yue Feng Pan||China||$2,108,000|
|2||Shao Po Liu||China||$1,239,520|
|3||Tse Jui Tsai||Chinese Taipei||$750,000|
|5||Long Wen Zhu||China||$269,500|
|6||Ming Min Wu||China||$269,500|
|7||Xong Xin Liu||China||$225,500|
|9||Bin Wen Ren||China||$166,500|
According to updates from the event, Pan began the final table at PokerStars LIVE Macau with the third largest chip stack, but soon established himself as the table captain, which in turn resulted in him taking over the chip lead.
It took move than an hour for the first elimination to occur – which happened when Bin Wen Ren's pocket sixes failed to hold against two opponents' overcards – but after that players hit the rail at a rapid pace including Huafeng Gu (8th), Xong Xin Liu (7th) and Ming Min Wu (6th).
With five players remaining, Pan had half the chips in play, and he waited patiently as other players dispatched Long Wen Zhu (5th) and Zhixiong Tan (4th). With three players remaining, Pan checked a flop and Tse Jui Tsai bet 350,000. Pan check-raised to 725,000, Tsai called, and the appeared on the turn. Pan moved all in and Tsai hit the tank before calling off his stack.
Pan was well ahead with two pair, and Tsai watched helplessly as the useless completed the board on the river. Tsai took his leave in third place for HK$750,000, which left Pan holding a more than 2-1 chip lead of Shao Po Liu.
The two jostled for about an hour, but in what would ultimately be the final hand of the tournament Pan checked a flop and Liu bet 375,000. Pan raised 450,000 more, Liu three-bet to 1.625 million, and Pan moved all in. Liu called off with the for two pair, but it was no good as Pan had flopped trips with the . Neither the turn nor river helped Liu, and he finished as runner-up for HK$1,239,520.
Congratulations to Yue Feng Pan on becoming the MPC23 champion, and to tournament organizers, who saw the summer series set a new record as the largest MPC in history by field size, hosting 4,105 players thus far. That obliterated the previous record of 3,883 players, and there are several tournaments still on the schedule.
Among those events to finish are the HK$20,000 NLHE final, Event 14: HK$3,000 NLHE, and Event 16: HK$5,000 KO Bounty. For more on the MPC23, head on over to the PokerStars Blog.