Live Events 4
HK$1,000,000 Short Deck Ante-Only

Kee, Yong and Katz To Battle It Out For $2.86 Million First-Place Prize on Monday

Jan_Kores • Level 16: 0-0, 40,000 ante
Kenneth Kee

The second day of HK$1,000,000 Triton Hold'em (Short Deck Ante-Only) saw the field dwindle to the final three contenders. Kenneth Kee, Richard Yong and Cary Katz have already locked up seven-figure prizes but the key question remained unanswered after a total of 17 hours of play. Kee, Yong and Katz hit a stalemate three-handed and neither of them was willing to give up the chance to nab the title which comes with an elusive HK$22,500,000 top-prize, equalling $2.86 million.

The remaining three players will come back to battle it out on Monday, July 30 at 4 p.m. local time with Kee holding the lead, having bagged 8,245,000 tonight. Yong is in second place with 6,815,000 while Katz guards the shortest stack of 2,940,000. It's still a wide-open contest as Katz will continue with over 20 button-antes so he'll have some room to maneuver his belongings.

Katz' way to the podium was perhaps the most exciting. The long-time no-limit aficionado arrived in Jeju and took to the felt in his first Triton Hold'em event, showing up on Day 1. Katz couldn't make it through and decided to give it another shot during the last level of late registration. It looked to be an expensive debut for Katz as his re-entry bullet ended up plummeted within a few minutes, courtesy of Gabe Patgorski.

The seventh level was very eventful and the registration gates finally closed with the total field soaring to 60 entries. Katz fired his third attempt just before the buzzer and he managed to convert it into making a profit in the event. That was something Phil Ivey wasn't able to do as he experienced a few devastating bad beats today.

After busting two entries on Day 1, Ivey returned to the felt and fell again, losing with aces against queens of Wai Kin Yong with one queen out of the deck. Ivey then jumped back in and finally started amassing piles of chips. He built a promising stack of 2 million at one point, but his farewell came when he made a great call on the turn with a pair of aces, facing Mikita Badziakouski in a huge pot of almost 3 million chips. Badziakouski had only an open-ender but he binked the river to sink Ivey for good.

Badziakouski was one of two players who managed to catapult a short stack into one of the biggest in the room, along with Tom Dwan who was in possession of 3.8 million in chips but then suffered a few blows and missed out on the final table. Katz delivered the final hit, prevailing after getting it in with straight against Dwan's top two on the turn.

That helped Katz to establish himself as the chip leader for the seven-handed final table, which started on the stone bubble. Ivan Leow was the shortest stack but he wasn't scared to blast and successfully rocketed his way back in contention.

So the last player leaving the tournament without getting paid was Andrew Robl who shoved with ace-ten suited only to run into ace-queen of Yong. Yong turned queens full and Robl couldn't even sweat the river while the rest of the players were guaranteed at least $451,000.

Leow eventually min-cashed, completing his hattrick from all Triton Hold'em events held in Jeju as he previously finished seventh in the HK$100k event before conquering the HK$500k event.

The highlight hand of the day happened shortly afterwards with Mikita Badziakouski and Peter Jetten both eliminated on the same hand. They peeled pairs of kings and queens but Kee was dealt aces at the same time, covering both Badziakouski and Jetten. They stuffed it in preflop and Kee held to reduce the field down to three.

The play continued for three more hours with each of the players guarding the lead at a certain point but Kee was the one who claimed it before bagging. He is arguably the most experienced Triton Hold'em player so he'll come back as a favorite but Yong and Katz have already shown great resilience so make sure to tune back to PokerNews at 4 p.m. to follow the final outcome of the exciting event with whopping prizes at stake.

Payout structure and results so far:

PlacePlayerCountryPrize (HKD)Prize (USD)
1st  22,500,0002,866,838
2nd  13,920,0001,773,617
3rd  9,120,0001,162,025
4thPeter JettenCanada6,300,000802,715
5thMikita BadziakouskiBelarus4,620,000588,657
6thIvan LeowMalaysia3,540,000451,049

Tags: Andrew RoblCary KatzGabe PatgorskiIvan LeowKenneth KeeMikita BadziakouskiPeter JettenPhil IveyRichard YongTom DwanWai Kin Yong