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Highlights

Main Event
Day 1e Completed

Weizhou Zha Leads Day 1E of the 2017 Suncity Cup Finale Macau

RazorSharpPro • Level 14: 1,500-3,000, 500 ante
Day 1E frontrunner Weizhou Zha
Day 1E frontrunner Weizhou Zha

The fifth of the 2017 Suncity Cup Finale Macau starting flights proved to be the most popular one yet and attracted 109 unique entries. With the format offering unlimited re-entries a further 14 extra bullets were fired to bring the total number of entries up to 123.

With 15 percent of the field locking up a Day 2 berth it took fourteen 40-minute levels to whittle this down the final eighteen with the battle for pole position a fierce, but thoroughly entertaining one

It was tough at the top with China’s Weizhou Zha and Mexico’s JC Alvarado duking it out for the top spot as the bubble approached. While it was Zha who edged in front as play concluded, bagging up a monstrous 270,200 in chips, it was Alvarado who closed out the day to finish hot on the Chinese player’s heels with a stack of 227,800. China’s Chen Bin (162,200) rounds out the top three.

Zha enjoyed a decent start to the day and climbed to the top of the table not long after registration closed, winning a race with ace-queen to beat an opponent’s pocket eights and become the first player to reach and breach the six-figure mark.

The Chinese player maintained his lead for the majority of the day, only losing it the once when JC Alvarado busted Linh Tran close to the bubble after the Vietnamese-Canadian moved all-in pre-flop with ace-eight suited and Alvarado woke up in the blinds with pocket queens.

However, it took Zha just minutes to edge back in front after attempting to pressure one of the shorter stacks. While Zha got all the chips in pre-flop with the dominated queen-five against his opponent’s ace-queen, the Chinese player had the chips to spare and caught his five to bring the field down to the bubble.

Not wanting to be outdone, Alvarado was the man to wrap up the day’s play calling the short-stacked shove of the unfortunate Lei Chen, who moved all-in pre-flop for a little over 10 big blinds holding ace-jack. The Mexican made the call from the blinds with queen-eight offsuit and immediately paired his eight before rivering two pair just to twist the knife and crush Chen’s Day 2 dreams.

Alvarado was one of the later entries, joining not long before the close of registration but really began to come into contention after winning a race with pocket fives against the ace-jack of Victor Chong.

Alvarado went on a rush so hot after this that it was a wonder he did not catch fire at the table and he was the only other player to finish play with over 200,000 in chips, though Chong also managed to make the cut with the rest of the Day 1E survivors stacking up as follows:

2017 Suncity Cup Finale Macau Day 1E Survivors and Day 2 Draw

PositionNameCountryChip Count2A Table/Seat2B Table/Seat
1Weizhou ZhaChina270,2002-4-
2JC AlvaradoMexico227,8003-7-
3Chen BinChina162,200-6-9
4Cheng DongChina158,9009-6-
5Tang Wei CongChina152,4003-9-
6Chang Yu ChungTaiwan144,500-6-6
7Keng Po WongMacau111,100-10-1
8Fredric StephanFrance95,600-4-6
9Hua Bin HwangChina75,100-4-9
10Li Tsan WaHong Kong71,900-6-5
11Vincent Yiu Chung TongChina59,900-9-4
12Bin Rui WangChina59,5008-1-
13Guoliang WeiChina58,800-8-5
14Victor ChongMalaysia56,5007-9-
15Ip Ka LeungChina46,700-2-8
16Jianfeng XuChina38,5002-9-
17Song XiongChina35,6007-8-
18Sheng Yong WangChina19,9004-8-

Notables who came up short included Australia’s Bobby Zhang who entered late and could not find any traction, Hong Kong’sJustin Chan who lost a race with pocket Queens against the ace-king of Kun Huang, and as previously mentioned Canada’s Linh Tran.

Day 2A begins at 1pm on Wednesday, 29 November, with Day 2B playing out at the same time on Thursday, 30 November and the PokerNews Live Reporting Team will be on hand to cover all the Main Event tournament thrills and spills. Day 1F kicks off at 1pm local time (GMT+8) on Monday, 27 November so join us then as we see who else has what it takes to secure a Day 2 seat.

Tags: Andy Yingkit ChanBobby ZhangChen BinCheng DongIp Ka LeungJC AlvaradoJianfeng XuJustin ChanKeng Po WongKun HuangLinh TranNevan ChengTang Wei CongVictor ChongWeizhou Zha

End of Day Chip Counts (full)

RazorSharpPro • Level 14: 1,500-3,000, 500 ante
Weizhou Zhang CN
Weizhou Zhang
CN 270,200 200
JC Alvarado mx
JC Alvarado
mx 227,800
Cheng Dong us
Cheng Dong
us 158,900 22,900
Tang Wei Cong CN
Tang Wei Cong
CN 152,400 9,400
Chang Yu Chung TW
Chang Yu Chung
TW 144,500 144,500
Keng Po Wong MO
Keng Po Wong
MO 111,100 25,600
Fredric Stephan FR
Fredric Stephan
FR 95,600 67,600
Hua Bin Hwang CN
Hua Bin Hwang
CN 75,100 75,100
Li Tsan Wa HK
Li Tsan Wa
HK 71,900 71,900
Vincent Tong CN
Vincent Tong
CN 59,900 59,900
Bin Rui Wang CN
Bin Rui Wang
CN 59,500 59,500
Guoliang Wei cn
Guoliang Wei
cn 58,800 58,800
Victor Chong my
Victor Chong
my 56,500 25,500
Ip Ka Leung CN
Ip Ka Leung
CN 46,700 -17,300
Jianfeng Xu CN
Jianfeng Xu
CN 38,500 -14,500
Song Xiong CN
Song Xiong
CN 35,600 35,600
Sheng Yong Wang CN
Sheng Yong Wang
CN 19,900 19,900
Chen Bin CN
Chen Bin
CN 162 -26,238

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JC Alvarado Washes Out Chen to Burst Bubble

RazorSharpPro • Level 14: 1,500-3,000, 500 ante
JC Alvarado bursts the bubble
JC Alvarado bursts the bubble

In what was quite possibly one of the shortest bubbles of all time - lasting all of two hands - the short-stacked Lei Chen moved all-in pre-flop from middle position and table messiah JC Alvarado made the call from the small blind.

Lei Chen: {a-Spades}{j-Diamonds}
JC Alvarado: {q-Diamonds}{8-Spades}

While Chen had the best hand, the way Alvarado had been running meant the result was almost a foregone conclusion. The Mexican paired his eight on the {5-Hearts}{8-Clubs}{10-Clubs} flop and the {6-Hearts} turn was not the ace or jack Chen needed to survive.

The {q-Hearts} river just rubbed salt into the wound and Chen headed for the exit empty handed while the remaining 18 players have all made HK$6,000 and guaranteed themselves a Day 2 seat.

JC Alvarado mx
JC Alvarado
mx 227,800 27,800
Lei Chen CN
Lei Chen
CN Busted

Tags: JC AlvaradoLei Chen

Zha Retakes Lead and Brings in Bubble

RazorSharpPro • Level 14: 1,500-3,000, 500 ante
Weizhou Zha
Weizhou Zha

A slew of quick bust outs following Linh Tran’s exit brought the field so close to the bubble the surviving 20 players could almost taste it.

The deep-stacked former frontrunner Weizhou Zha was moved to balance tables shortly after Tran’s elimination and not wanting to be outdone by Alvarado, Zha brought the field to the bubble in a hand that will give his opponent nightmares for years to come.

The unfortunate player left so fast we did not get a chance to get his name, but then he didn’t look like he was in much of a mood to give it had we had a chance to ask.

The man in question limped the cutoff (hoping to induce, as you will see) and after the button folded, the small blind completed and the cutoff got his wish when Weizhou Zha squeezed to 15,000 in total.

The cutoff moved all-in for 36,600 in total and, after the small blind bowed out, Zha tossed in the extras and the hands were turned over.

Cutoff: {a-Clubs}{q-Hearts}
Weizhou Zha: {q-Spades}{5-Diamonds}

Of course, poker being the totally unjust game that it is, the window card was the {5-Spades} with the {3-Diamonds}{9-Diamonds} completing the flop and bringing an anguished groan from the all-in player. There was no help to be found on the {k-Spades} turn or the {2-Hearts} river and the field was down to 19. Zha stacked up to over 270,000 and now the bubble had arrived the clock was paused with 18-minutes remaining on the level.

Weizhou Zhang CN
Weizhou Zhang
CN 270,000 103,000

Tags: Weizhou Zha

Alvarado Busts Tran to Seize Lead

RazorSharpPro • Level 14: 1,500-3,000, 500 ante
Table captain JC Alvarado
Table captain JC Alvarado

This tournament is fast becoming the JC Alvarado show and the Mexican player is running so hot right now it is a wonder he has not burst into flames.

We saw Alvarado push an opponent off a 45,000 pot after jamming the river on a fairly dry queen-high board to pad out his stack further before he put an end to Linh Tran’s Day 2 hopes and dreams the very next hand.

Tran was down to his last 20,000 and moved all-in from middle position with {a-Clubs}{8-Clubs} and Alvarado woke up in the small blind with {q-Diamonds}{q-Spades} and made the call.

The {k-Clubs}{6-Diamonds}{4-Hearts}{7-Spades}{9-Diamonds} runout was not the one Tran was after and he hit the rail and Alvarado now has a massive 200,000-plus stack – we are not sure exactly how much for sure though as he has them unevenly stacked and does not know exactly how much himself. It’s definitely more than 200,000 though.

JC Alvarado mx
JC Alvarado
mx 200,000 40,000
Linh Tran ca
Linh Tran
ca Busted

Tags: JC AlvaradoLinh Tran

Level:
14
Blinds:
1,500/3,000
Ante:
500

Cheng Busts Lee

RazorSharpPro • Level 13: 1,200-2,400, 400 ante
Nevan Cheng
Nevan Cheng

There are now 24 players in action with Nevan Cheng the man to thin the field. The short stacked Jeho Lee moved all-in pre-flop for his last 39,400 from under-the-gun plus one and action folded around to Cheng in the big blind.

It took Cheng some time to make his decision so it was quite a surprise to see him turn over the hand he did when he finally decided to make the call after around 2 minutes in the tank.

Nevan Cheng: {a-Clubs}{k-Diamonds}
Jeho Lee: {8-Hearts}{8-Clubs}

It was a fair fight, but it was one that Lee lost immediately when the flop came down {7-Diamonds}{9-Diamonds}{a-Diamonds} and with Cheng holding a diamond Lee found himself needing to hit the deck's one remaining non-diamond eight.

As you can clearly see from the post title, that did not happen and after the {3-Hearts} turn and {2-Spades} river completed the hand Lee headed for the exit while Cheng stacked up to 151,000.

Nevan Cheng HK
Nevan Cheng
HK 151,000 44,000
Jeho Lee
Jeho Lee
Busted

Tags: Jeho LeeNevan Cheng

Alvarado Turns Up the Heat

RazorSharpPro • Level 13: 1,200-2,400, 400 ante

Since his double-up before the break against Victor Chong, JC Alvarado has become increasingly active and has climbed almost to the top of the ladder.

The only man standing in his way is Weizhou Zha and the two have not long played a decent sized pot together. Before that however, we caught Alvarado and Linh Tran tangling in a hand.

It was Tran who was the pre-flop raiser, making it 5,500 to go from middle position and Alvarado made the call from the small blind to take the action heads-up to a {2-Hearts}{j-Clubs}{a-Clubs} flop.

The action went check, check and the {3-Diamonds} came in on the turn and brought an 8,500 Alvarado bet with it. Tran made the call and the {7-Hearts} river completed the hand, but not the betting.

After thinking it over for a few minutes Alvarado fired for 17,000 and Tran had a decision to make as, with 38,000 behind, the bet represented a significant portion of his chips.

Eventually, Tran made the call and Alvarado turned over {2-Spades}{5-Spades} for bottom pair and it was good. Tran dropped to 21,000 while Alvarado climbed to roughly 138,000.

Then Alvarado applied the heat to Weizhou Zha the following hand in a blind versus blind battle. We are not sure what the pre-flop action was as we picked up the hand on the turn with the board reading {j-Diamonds}{2-Spades}{4-Hearts}{6-Diamonds} just as Alvarado led out for a bet of 8,500 into a pot of close to the same.

Zha thought it over but eventually made the call and the {3-Hearts} came in on the river. This saw Alvardo bet big and he splashed out a chunky bet of 45,000 to send Zha deep into the tank, where he remained for several minutes before finding the fold and leaving Alvarado to scoop another and climb to 160,000 while Zha dropped to what looked to be 167,000.

Weizhou Zhang CN
Weizhou Zhang
CN 167,000 17,000
JC Alvarado mx
JC Alvarado
mx 160,000 22,000
Linh Tran ca
Linh Tran
ca 21,000 -31,100

Tags: JC AlvaradoLinh TranWeizhou Zha

Level:
13
Blinds:
1,200/2,400
Ante:
400