It was a long day and the pace was very stop-and-go, with long periods of quiet punctuated by staccato bursts of action.
Play was suspended on Day 2 when the money bubble broke. Coming back with 16, and the intention of playing down to a winner, did raise some concerns but in the end it wasn't quite as bad as we imagined. The stacks were deep but the play was generally fast, resulting in a quick playdown to the final nine.
Making the money but falling short of the final table were names like Diwei Huang and Kim Wooka. For a full rundown of everyone who cashed, click through to the results.
When nine remained there was a redraw for new seats at the final table. Brian Kang was leading the pack but a few others had substantial stacks of their own. Play slowed down significantly at this point and it took a few levels of cautious sparring before things started to heat up.
When the clock rolled over to Level 17 something must have clicked on, because we saw four players bust in that hour alone. Most of them were short stacks, spurred to action by the rising blinds, but one was not.
PL.com's pick to win this thing was Dan Schreiber. An American, Schreiber actually lives here in Seoul. He won a WSOP bracelet in 2007 and made the final table in this event one year ago.
When play was six-handed this afternoon he and Brian Kang controlled close to three-quarters of the chips on the table. It seemed unthinkable he'd be the one to go out in sixth, but that's exactly what went down.
Schreiber and Kang were ridiculously deep and ended up getting in a raising war after seeing a heads-up flop. After all the chips went in the middle we saw Schreiber had flopped a straight and Kang had top set.
It looked like Dan was right on course to double his already-huge stack, until Kang filled up on the turn. The river was irrelevant, and Schreiber was out in sixth position.
We had a chance to talk with him and he took the beat amazingly well. Online players all seem to have the same attitude. Never get too excited. I spoke with Dan after he won his WSOP bracelet and it was much the same - very blasé.
Brian Kang was able to wield the chip lead for much of the day but when it got three-handed he suffered a series of big losses, going out on the heads-up bubble.
It was clear that the two remaining players, Shiono and Tasaka, weren't afraid to throw their weight around. Tasaka was the aggressor, though, and he quickly reaped the benefits, extending the lead with which he started the one on one match.
The final hand was a doozy, and surprised even us, which is no easy feat. A flurry of raises ensued before the flop and when all the chips were in middle we saw Tasaka had gone to war with 9♥ 2♣. Shiono's holdings were only marginally more respectable as he slammed A♠ 4♣ down on the felt.
For the detailed version of that hand, and everything else that happened today, click through to the live updates.
At this point Tasaka had his opponent at about a 2-1 advantage and could afford to take the gamble. When the dealer laid out the flop there was a nine in the window which, in the end, was enough to end the tournament.
Japan is one of the countries where poker is still in its infancy, not yet wearing its big-boy pants. Having two Japanese players fighting it out for this title was perfect. Who knows, maybe Yoshihiro Tasaka will be Japan's answer to Chris Moneymaker.
PokerListings.com has enjoyed every minute of our time here in South Korea and we're already looking forward to doing it all over again next year. The next stop on the PokerStars.com APPT is in Auckland in just a few weeks and, as always, PL.com will be on the scene to bring you the action every step of the way. Make sure to join us then.