Everybody has been waiting for the Aussie Millions Main Event to begin, and it has finally done so. The player field was split into three separate groups, the first playing on day 1a, the second playing on day 1b and the last on day 1c. The tournament has been riddled with big poker names, along with some of the lesser known names. Days 1a and 1b saw a lot of intense action as the players jockeyed for position among the chip leaders.
Day 1a saw Irishman Andy Black rise to the top of the leaderboard, knocking no less than six different players from the tournament as he rose to the top. At the end of the day, he was the chip leader with 167,800 chips, although there were several players waiting right behind him.
Two players who have had success at the Aussie Millions were eliminated on day 1a. Jamie Pickering, who won Event #4 this year, made his exit when he went all-in on a flush draw that never came to fruition. Jimmy Fricke, the 2007 Main Event runner-up and winner of Event #3 in 2008, walked away from the table when his K-J suited fell to the pocket aces of South African Raymond Rahme. Other big names who fell on day 1a were Mike Sexton, â€œThe Ambassador of Poker,â€ and Lee Watkinson, winner of Event #7.
Day 1b was all about Phil Ivey. Phil Ivey spent his time building up a big stack, and won a humongous pot when he made quads on the turn to take out two players at once, including one who had flopped a straight. Phil Ivey would end the day as the chip leader with 163,300 chips, just slightly behind day 1a leader Andy Black.
Celebrity Shannon Elizabethâ€™s appearance at the Aussie Millions had been hyped up, but in the end she would leave quietly and quickly, losing her stack to Phil Laak and his pocket aces. Phil Laak would not survive the first day either, exiting the tournament later in the day.
The reigning Aussie Millions Main Event champion, Gus Hansen, would find only failure in his quest for a repeat. Gus was eliminated when his pocket sevens were defeated by Q-J suited after a jack fell on the flop.
Chris â€œJesusâ€ Ferguson, Patrik Antonius and Joe Sebok were among the other big names eliminated on day 1b.
Australian Joe Hachem had a good performance on day 1b building his chip stack and finishing the day in seventh place among the day 1b performers. Jeff Lisandro was seated at Hachemâ€™s table and he also held a big stack, finishing the day in third. The two players had to be cautious, not wanting to tangle with the other big stack at the table. Checking was a frequent sight when the two found themselves in a pot against each other.
The Aussie Millions Main Event got off to a quick start with some exciting poker action and many big names heading to the rail. It will definitely be a fun tournament to watch.