Meet the Final Nine players of the MPC 26 Red Dragon

The MPC 26 Red Dragon, which began one week ago, is nearing its end with the final table established late last night. While there were many crowd favorites running deep, such as past Red Dragon champion Terry Fan, Team PokerStars Pro Jake Cody, and Day 3 entering chip leader, Rundulf Martin Gonzales, they all would miss a final table berth and the chance to win the juicy HKD3,265,000 first prize.

Final Table (Photo Long Guan Courtesy of PokerStars)

Among those still in contention are a mixed bag of pros and neophytes, all of them looking to land their first Red Dragon. Here’s a look at the final nine players:

Chien Fa Chou – Chinese Taipei – 4,070,000 chips

A couple of lucky breaks were all Chien Fa Chou needed to climb out of the danger zone and into the chip leader’s throne. Amassing a stack of 4,070,000, Chou is in new territory with no previous records in the live tournament scene other than a 70th place finish at a previous Red Dragon event. However, as the man in the lead, and having gone this deep, he is already looking at pocketing his largest-ever live payout.

Alan King Lun Lau – Hong Kong – 3,790,000 chips

Entering the Red Dragon final table as second in command is Hong Kong pro Alan King Lun Lau with 3,790,000 in chips. Lau is decorated with many titles under his belt including the Asia Player of the Year in 2015. Less than two weeks ago, Lau reigned at one of the early side events, the HKD 10,000 No Limit Hold’em event, and reached the money stage at the Baby Dragon earning him a combined total of US$36,000. His fantastic performance continues with his first-ever appearance at the Red Dragon final table.

Edwin Gerard – USA – 3,515,000 chips

Another player making his debut appearance at the Red Dragon final table is USA’s Edwin Gerard with a healthy stack of 3,515,000. Gerard knocked out the last two players of Day 3, Da Xiong (11th place) and Rundulf Martin Gonzales (10th place), which set the final table. His stats only show a few small cashes at last year’s WSOP and is now looking to gain his biggest payout yet.

Liang Xu – China – 3,310,000 chips

China’s Liang Xu emerged into the live scene in 2015, but only posted one ITM. Last year was a big jump for him, finishing 4th at the MPC 24 Red Dragon, making him and Yang Zhang the only two players in the lineup with final table experience in this event. Xu also shipped in his first ever six-digit payout of US$100,301 at the MPC 25 HKD25,000 No Limit Hold’em event. He enters the final table with a healthy 3,310,000 in chips.

Jun Liu – China – 3,055,000 chips

Another neophyte at the Red Dragon final table is China’s Jun Liu with 3,055,000 in chips. Liu crushed the hopes of Team PokerStars Pro Jake Cody, eliminating him in 29th place. Liu is another player in the lineup already looking at shipping in his largest live score earing nothing bigger than US$8,581 in his career.

Apoorva Goel – India – 2,030,000 chips

Representing India is Apoorva Goel who has been seen at several events in Macau and Manila, and even dabbles in the prestigious WSOP. His first place finish at the APPT 2013 ACOP Six-Max Championship earned him US$37,153 which he is looking to surpass at the Red Dragon. He enters the final table with a 2,030,000 stack.

Yang Zhang – China – 2,000,000 chips

Storming into the live scene in 2014, Yang Zhang quickly etched himself as one of the best players from Mainland China after placing 2nd at the APPT Beijing Millions in July, then going all the way to the finish line at the APPT Beijing Cup Main Event in December.  Both of those events gave him his two largest ever payouts totaling US$215,000. Last year, his extensive number of cashes around the world, including his 7th place finish at the MPC 24 Red Dragon, earned him one of the most sought after poker titles, the GPI Player of the Year for Asia. Zhang comes into the final table with a stack of 2,000,000 in chips.

Bobby Zhang – Australia – 1,540,000 chips

Another highly decorated player at the final table is Bobby Zhang, looking to partner up his Baby Dragon trophy from 2014 with the coveted big one, the Red Dragon. Although this is his first appearance at the Red Dragon final table, his impressive deep runs throughout his career have earned him quite a number of trophies. His largest score was at last year’s Aussie Millions Main Event finishing in 10th place for US$84,008.

Zhen Wen – China – 1,020,000 chips

Completing the nine is China’s Zhen Wen with 1,020,000 in chips. Wen is also a newbie at the Red Dragon final table and is well on his way to earning his first sweet payout.

Stay tuned to for the final results and winner’s story of the MPC 26 Red Dragon.

Article by Triccia David

More: MPC26 Full Coverage

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Tricia David

Tricia David has long experience as a recreational poker player and has been covering poker events since 2010 for numerous outfits in Asia. She spent one year working part time with Poker Portal Asia then became editor and lead writer for all event coverage of the Philippine Poker Tour (PPT). Under the PPT, she overlooked content for their website, and produced live updates on all their events. In addition, she served as the live and online events website content writer for the Asian Poker Tour. Currently, she does live events reporting in Asia for online news site Somuchpoker and is also one of their news contributors.

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