Action-packed IPO3 Main Event ends with Hwan leading at the end of day 2

The International Poker Open 3 series resumed on Tuesday, December 1, 2015 with 135 players returning for day 2 of the US$250,000 Guaranteed Main Event at Resorts World Manila, Philippines. With nearly half the field comprised of below average stacks, casualties were abundant early in the day that by dinner break, the money stage was well within sights.

Coming into day 2 as the pack leader was Japan’s Hajime Iwakura who despite having the most chips, had difficulty gaining the same momentum as he had in day 1a. Just before the dinner break, he took a hard hit to his stack when his pocket jacks ran into Filipino player Edilberto Gopez’s pocket aces and was eliminated shortly after. Another player who also took a beating was Filipino player Renato Villanueva Jr whose pocket queens was out-flopped by Korea’s Ahn Seong Hwan’s ace-seven suited. This hand was the turning point for Hwan as it catapulted him to the chip lead position, which he used to control the table and eliminate several more players before ending the day as the overall chip leader with 704,000 chips.

Action Packed Day

The day certainly had lots of fireworks and heated moments. Filipino player Luke Pangan was consistently giving players a hard time chipping up at his table. Pangan railed a player in dramatic fashion when he landed quads on the river against his opponent’s flopped full house, and then collected more when he scalped Japan’s Tetsuya Tsuchikawa well before the money. Pangan ended the day with 488,000 chips. In another table, there seemed to be a controversy over a forward motion ruling that led to a three-hand penalty given to China’s Abao Shi. Prior to the controversy, Shi maintained an above average stack throughout the day, and earned even more when his pocket fours landed a set. However, several hands after the controversial ruling, Shi won a big pot with his nut flush against Korea’s Seung Soo Jeon, sending his stack well into the chip leader’s zone. Although he won the pot deservingly, amassing more chips seemed to reignite the discontentment some players had over the earlier ruling. Shi ended the day in third position with 563,000 chips, just one chip apart from second in rank, Lester Edoc, with 564,000.


27 players left in the Main Event

Bubble Stage

Undoubtedly the most intense part of the day was the bubble stage with 28 players waiting to see who would take the fall. With hand-for-hand in effect, the tournament directors enforced stricter rules, denying players the chance to get up from their seats to look at the action at the other tables. Several players were unable to comply and as a result received one orbit penalties each. The tension finally broke when Japan’s Makoto Takahashi delivered the bubble with his pocket nines landing a set against a short stack with ace-king. Other survivors of day 2, were Russian player Andrei Dementev with 525,00 chips, Kim Do Kwuen from Korea with 212,000 chips, and Filipino player Marc Rivera with 147,000 chips to mention a few.

The fallen

Among the fallen were poker pros Bryan Diwei Huang from Singapore, John Tech of the Philippines, Canada’s Linh Tran, Korea’s SJ Kim, and two-time side event champion Chen Hao from China.

Day 3 will resume on Wednesday, December 2, 2015 at 1pm. The remaining 27 players will be battling it out for a final table berth.

Chip Counts (end of Day 2)

– Ahn Seong Hwan 704,000
– Lester Edoc 564,000
– Shi Abao 563,000
– Andrei Dementev 525,000
– Luke Pangan 488,000
– Mark dela Cruz 361,000
– Edilberto E Gopez 328,000
– Zhou Quan 294,000
– Makoto Takahasi 289,000
– Sun Ci 254,000
– Isabelo Braza 224,000
– Kim Dokwuen 212,000
– Chen Zhi Ning 196,000
– Ying Lin Chua 191,000
– Stevie Moon 149,000 & Fan Fan 149,000
– Mark Rivera 147,000
– Mark Larson 130,000
– Wang Hai 111,000
– Martin Gonzales 80,000
– Tan Chong Hweg 75,000
– Edwin Marzan 66,000
– Song Nan 65,000
– Jeon Seung Soo 62,000
– Huanng Wujian 61,000
– Dham Ngoc Quolbao 60,000
– John Charles Estrella 54,000

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Louis Hartwell

Graduated in Media Communication at the University of Lausanne, Louis Hartman is a co-founder of He began his career in Cambodia as freelance journalist. In same time he was making his living by playing poker every night at that time. Intense learner, he read dozens of poker strategy books to improve his skills during many years. With a strong interest about poker "behind the scene" in Asia and his communication skills, Louis launched Somuchpoker in 2014.

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