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Hung-Sheng "Shaq" Lin wins Macau Millions

11 Apr 2011

MACAU -- (PRESS RELEASE) -- PokerStars Macau at Casino Grand Lisboa hosted the Macau Millions 2011 from April 2-10 and the tournament may ultimately be regarded by historians as one of the monumental landmarks for poker in Asia.

The Macau Millions had a staggering 1,329 entries for the HKD $2,200 buy-in event which created a prize pool of HKD $2,631,420 -- smashing the HKD $1,500,000 guarantee and becoming the first venue in Asia to break the 1,000-entry mark.

The historical event was won by Chinese Taipei's Hung-Sheng "Shaq" Lin who was awarded HKD $400,000 for his triumph.

A day before the final numbers were determined, Danny McDonagh said, "I was quietly confident about reaching 1,000 players but with a total field now possibly hitting 1,300, this has exceeded our wildest expectations!"

"This year the popularity of the Macau Millions is so much greater, particularly within the region." continued the PokerStars Director of Live Operations for Asia-Pacific. "Poker is really taking off in Asia. It's a proud moment for our PokerStars Macau team and speaks volumes about Grand Lisboa's well deserved reputation for quality and success."

Sunday's Day 3 final began with 34 players. Shaq and German Khiem Nguyen was jousting endlessly as they remained amoungst the chip leaders throughout the day.

The duel would continue during final table play and set up the turning point of the tournament. There are 3 players left and blinds are 50,000-100,000, with a 10,000 ante. Nguyen raises to 250,000 on the button and France's Brice "Pada" Renaud folded his small blind. However, Lin decided to raise to 605,000 which was called by the German.

The two biggest stacks received a flop of Th-3s-As and chip leader Lin opened for 850,000. Nguyen then proceeded to move all-in and after slight hesitation, the call was made.

Nguyen showed Ts7s for a pair of tens with a flush draw. Lin held Ad6s for top pair. The turn and river blanked out and that elimination gave Shaq a 6-to-1 chip advantage going into heads up play with Pada.

"That hand where I was up against the pair and flush draw was the most important one for me." said Lin through a translator. "The player to my left (Nguyen) was the biggest threat throughout the day. He played very well."

Shaq vs. Pada didn't last long as the first hand was also the final hand. A short stacked Renaud decided to re-raise for all his chips holding K6 but was quickly called by Lin who had pocket Jacks. The Jacks held and Lin becomes the Macau Millions 2011 champion.

Asked how it felt to win, the 29-year old poker pro responded "I'm very happy but also very tired. I didn't sleep last night because I was so excited about today."

Lin was ranked 3rd on the Asia Player of the Year (APOY) standings after placing 2nd runner up in February's Red Dragon main event. With his victory, Shaq now passes idle Mark Benasa for the top rank position with a solid 3,643 points to Benasa's 2,585.

"I would like to concentrate on winning APOY." informs Shaq. "Last year I only played half the events but this year I want to play the whole season. I want to win the APOY and show that I am worthy of gaining my family's support. I won't stop playing just because I have a lead. I'm going to work hard and play all the (Official Asia Player of the Year) events."

Renauld's runner-up finish in the Macau Millions moves him into 4th with 1,600 points while reigning APOY Team PokerStars Pro Bryan Huang slips to 14th.

Canadian Michael Payne won the $1,500 Deepstack event for HDK $61,575 and enters the main leaderboard at 27th. Team PokerStars Pro Celina Lin and former Macau Millions winner Justin Chan both made their second final table of the year to improve to 42nd and 34th respectively.

Hong Kong's Sparrow Cheung won the $1,000 Rebuy event for HKD $60,100. Cheung is 16th on APOY.
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