The first day of the $5k Challenge at the 2019 The Star Sydney Champs came to an end after 15 levels of 45 minutes each. In total, 129 entries rocked up the entry fee to create a prize pool of A$612,750. Fifteen of those players made the money and fourteen of them made it through to Saturday's Day 2. Claiming the Day 1 chip lead was Charlie Hawes with 429,000 in chips.
Hawes is a bit of a regular at The Star Sydney during local tournament series as he has reached two final tables before. He finished second in the 6-Max event in 2017 and in third place during the 2018 Main Event for A$141,935. Trailing Hawes is Ehsan Amiri, who is also no stranger to the final table stages in Sydney with five previous appearances on the final stages. Closing out the podium is Sandy Sinclair with 337,000 in chips, trailing Amiri by only 1,000. The min-cash of A$10,343 will be Sinclair’s biggest live cash every but he’s in a great position to make even more money.
Vincent Huang and Jason Gray will be looking to claim their spot on the final table and make it to the end to take the win back home with them. But players like Ashish Gupta, Andrian Chin, Majid Saab, and Vesko Zmukic have all bagged an above-average stack and will be trying their best to prevent that from happening.
The fourteen remaining players will return to the felt at 2:15 p.m. local time on Saturday. Play will commence with Level 16 which features a small blind of 5,000, big blind of 10,000, and a big blind ante of 10,000. A live stream will be provided by Run It Up on their Twitch channel with commentary provided by Jamie Kerstetter and Ashley Sleeth with a security delay as the hole cards will be shown.
The PokerNews live reporting team will be on hand to bring you all the action from the first shuffle up and deal until the final pot has been pushed to the champion. So make sure to follow it all, right here, as usual, to see who will take lay claim to the first-place prize of A$171,572.