Thomas Leads, Esfandiari and Negreanu Chase in APAC FInal 15

Russell Thomas
2012 WSOP Octo-Niner Russell Thomas

They’re down to just 15 players in the inaugural WSOP APAC main event with 2012 Octo-Niner Russell Thomas out front but several notable names still peppering the leaderboard including Antonio Esfandiari and Daniel Negreanu.

888 pro Thomas, who knocked off a Sunday Million win just two weeks ago, continues to prove his main event run was no fluke as he bagged up 1,677,000 after a day of strong play for the overall chip lead.

Right behind Thomas, though, is hyper-aggressive German Benny “toweliestar” Spindler, a former EPT London champ and famed online crusher who’ll carry 1,505,000 into Day 4 tomorrow.

Antonio Esfandiari
Magic continues.

As if that wasn’t enough for Thomas to contend with, he’s also got two certifiable poker legends breathing down his neck – and at his own table no less.

Poker's all-time leading money winner Antonio Esfandiari is one of them, as he bided his time well over the first couple of days before making a big move up the ranks today.

He finished with 1,050,000 for a sixth-place stack – thanks largely to dragging a huge pot from British pro Rupert Elder in a KK>QQ cooler.

Right behind Esfandiari is the excitable Daniel Negreanu, who seems to have thoroughly enjoyed his time in Australia and it’s been reflected in his play.

One of the chip leaders on both Day 1 and Day 2, Negreanu had some bumps in the road on Day 3 before finding a late rush to bag up 827,000 for seventh overall.

Hoping to end his recent bracelet drought, Negreanu seems ready and in the right frame of mind to make a run:

Eclectic Mix Remain Including High Roller Yu

Outside of the above four players, the rest of the final 15 is light on star power save for noted Macau high roller Winfred Yu.

Starting as the Day 3 chip leader, Yu actually went backwards with his stack today before finally holding on with 354,000 to end the night.

Online grinder Jordan Westmorland, a US expat now grinding in Thailand, will join Yu as one of the short stacks with 321,000.

Names near the top of the chip counts include Australians Kahle Burns and Daniel Marton along with the unheralded George Tsatsis.

Benny Spindler
Benny Spindler

The final 15 and chip counts:

  • 1. Russell Thomas 1,677,000
  • 2. Benny Spindler 1,505,000
  • 3. Kahle Burns 1,469,000
  • 4. Daniel Marton 1,325,000
  • 5. George Tsatsis 1,161,000
  • 6. Antonio Esfandiari 1,050,000
  • 7. Daniel Negreanu 827,000
  • 8. Tino Lechich 654,000
  • 9. Raj Ramakrishnan 644,000
  • 10. Mikel Habb 439,000
  • 11. Yasar Gueden 385,000
  • 12. Winfred Yu 354,000
  • 13. Jordan Westmorland 321,000
  • 14. Michael Pedley 310,000
  • 15. Joel Feldman 187,000

For a full rundown of all the day's action check our exclusive WSOP APAC live updates. Play picks up tomorrow at 3 pm Melbourne time (11 pm ET) and will play down to a final table.

Be sure to follow along here and tune in Sunday for the exclusive live stream right here on PokerListings! Check out today's daily video below:

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