Seat 1, Shuaiyang Qiu (China) – 2,840,000
China’s Shuaiyang Qui starts the final table as chip leader in the Red Dragon event. A merchant by trade, Qui tells us he’s been playing poker for two years now, and initially improved his skills by watching training videos. Amazingly Qui has no live cashes to his name yet but he’s already changed that with this final table appearance.
Qui says his hero is Tian Hao and he attributes good fortune to the reason why he’s made it this far in the tournament. He says he has enjoyed the well-organized MPC event this week along with the great service staff.
Seat 2, Daniel Hyongin Lee (USA) – 1,780,000
Daniel Hyongin Lee hails from Seoul in South Korea and considers his occupation a professional poker player. He’s been playing for almost a decade and says he learned “the hard way” grinding cash games. Lee informs us that his best result to date was a 2nd place finish at the Venetian in Las Vegas.
His most memorable pot of the tournament was when a miracle two outer landed on the river to see him stay alive. Lee ran into pocket aces preflop holding queen nine and found trips on the end. He says his friends are his heroes and attributes his Red Dragon success to having dreams. When he’s away from the poker table Lee enjoys drinking, reading and sleeping.
Seat 3, Jack Zi Yang Salter (United Kingdom) – 1,755,000
London’s Jack Zi Yang Salter is a prominent poker pro who has played the game for ten years now. He tells us he started by giving action and trying to learn from his mistakes and now he plays all stakes multi-table tournaments. When asked about his greatest tournament result Salter instead looked forward, saying hopefully he will navigate his way through the final table and lift the Red Dragon trophy.
Salter’s poker hero is Huidong Gu and he has particularly enjoyed the huge celebrations from players at the table here in Macau. On top of that he praised the friendly players and staff before mentioning he was happy that the tournament payed 12% of the field. When Salter isn’t playing poker he can be found travelling or spending time with friends.
Seat 4, Benjamin Hamnet (USA) – 2,225,000
Benjamin Hamnet is a writer who resides in Pittsburgh, USA. He has played poker for 11 years and first began with drinking buddies. Hamnet has already achieved success on the felt previously – his best result coming when he shipped the WPT Borgata in 2012.
Hamnet has particularly enjoyed the live music and food in Macau this week and says that luck was responsible for him making the final table. He is a fan of travel outside of poker and says that his hero is his mom.
Seat 5, Liang Song (China) – 1,220,000
China’s Liang Song has only played poker for two years and got his start in games with friends. Nowadays he can be found frequenting the online circuit but says his best result was 5th in an APPT Macau side event.
Song believes his most crucial moment in the Red Dragon this week was when he called an all-in for 20 big blinds with ace king and won the pot. He has thoroughly enjoyed testing his wits against so many skilled players here in Macau and tells us that other than poker his hobbies include running.
Seat 6, Jingxuan Zhu (China) – 885,000
Jingxuan Zhu is a company owner and investor who calls Hangzhou, China home. He’s been playing poker for four years and learned by watching videos and discussing hands with his friends. Zhu’s greatest tournament result was a 4th place finish in a side event earlier in this Macau Poker Cup.
Zhu says he can’t find a hero so the burden lies with himself, and when he’s not playing poker he also likes to watch movies. This week Zhu has been a fan of the local cuisine and says the most important thing to bring him to this point in the tournament has been the support of his friends.
Seat 7, Tom Alner (United Kingdom) – 2,800,000
Tom Alner has just secured his seat at back-to-back Red Dragon final tables after appearing on the last one at MPC24 in March. Alner is no stranger to impressive results in Macau – he even won the Red Dragon back in 2013. He will start this final table just 40,000 behind the chip leader and finds himself in a great position to go for a second title.
While clearly skilled in the live arena it was online where Alner achieved his biggest score so far – pocketing $375,000 in a PokerStars WCOOP event. When he’s not playing poker Alner enjoys keeping fit, playing football, travelling and spending time with friends.
Seat 8, Xiao Bo Zhou (China) – 2,405,000
China’s Xiao Bo Zhou is a tax analyst by trade and he has played poker for eight years now. He got his start in games with friends before moving up stakes. He tells us his best live result to date was a third place finish in an Macau Poker Event back in 2011.
Zhou’s poker hero is Phil Ivey and what he’s enjoyed most about the Red Dragon this week has been making the right decision and catching players when they’re bluffing. The most important hand for Zhou so far was when he tripled up with pocket aces on Day 3. Other than poker Zhou’s hobbies include football and basketball.
Seat 9, Wenxiang Chen (China) – 1,270,000
Wenxiang Chen is from Shanghai China and works in private equity. He has only played poker for three years and says he learned by simply playing the game. Chen’s best finish was 48th place in the MPC21 Red Dragon and he has outdone himself with this final table appearance.
Chen’s poker hero is Antonio Esfandiari and he says he has enjoyed the competitive strategy and adjusting to different player types. Chen chalks his success up to remaining patient and calm at the table and aside from hold’em he also plays Open Face Chinese and Pineapple.