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Yuki Ko Takes Massive Lead into PokerStars Festival Korea Final Table

Yuki Ko
  • Yuki Ko has more than 30 percent of the chips with eight players left in PokerStars Festival Korea.

The PokerStars Festival Korea Main Event is down to a final table, and a clear favorite has emerged heading into the final day of play. Korean player Yuki Ko, who started the day with the chip lead, will hold more than 30 percent of the chips when official final table play begins on Day 3.

Ko used an extremely aggressive, unpredictable style of play that absolutely stymied his opponents and allowed him to build up a stack that's more than double that of Scott Janik (1,367,000) and Taehoon Han (1,345,000), who are essentially tied for second place. It seemed like every time Ko's opponents tried to play back at him, they ran into a buzzsaw as he either had the goods or simply ran well when the cards were tabled.

For instance, Mitsuru Sano had a big stack and tried butting heads with Ko when there were 14 left. He check-raised the turn on a three-flush board with second pair that was he was turning into a bluff, following up with a big river bet. However, Ko had the flush with a six-four of diamonds that he played under the gun and won a huge pot.

In another spot, Ko opened and got three-bet small by small blind Wei Hsiang Yeu. Ko stuffed it to put Yeu all in, and the latter sighed and called it off with pocket threes. A king-jack-three flop looked great for Yeu, and he even turned a queen of spades to add a flush draw. However, Ko hit an offsuit ten on the river to make a straight.

A couple of representatives of Team PokerStars were among the players coming into the day with high hopes but having them dashed early. Team Online's Randy "nanonoko" Lew busted early when he ran pocket jacks into the pocket kings of Dmitrii Kovalevskii, who advanced to the final table with the short stack of 403,000. Team Pro Celina Lin lasted only a little longer.

Among the 98 players who started the day, there were a few notables who advanced into the money in the top 39 places. Alan Lau, Albert Paik, Jack Wu, Justin Chan and Sparrow Cheung all cashed, though none reached the final table.

A subplot coming into Day 2 was the possibility of Lau, Cheung and Pete Chen, the top three respectively in Asia Player of the Year rankings, seeking points. Cheung would be the last to fall, going out 12th, so all three missed the chance to accrue points by finishing top 10.

The remaining eight players will return at noon local time on Monday for the final table, which will begin with the following setup:

1Mitsuru Sano865,000
2Yuki Ko2,820,000
3Jwahyoung Kim509,000
4Taehoon Han1,345,000
5Dmitrii Kovalevskii403,000
6Scott Janik1,367,000
7Weikuo Hsiao722,000
8Harunobu Kojima456,000

Just under 19 minutes remain in Level 23 (12,000/24,000/4,000). Come back to PokerNews to see who claims the ₩83,130,000, or about $75,000, that will go to the winner.

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