The world’s finest poker professionals have descended down under as Melbourne’s Crown Casino grabs the spotlight of the poker universe for the next 17 days.

The World Series of Poker Asia Pacific (WSOP APAC) has finally arrived and players, fans and even the media are pretty pumped for the stories that may unfold on the blue felts over ten WSOP championship events.

Ultimately, the WSOP APAC kicked off it style with the first flight of the $1,100 No Limit Holdem Accumulator Event. An event that was conceived right here at Crown, the Accumulator allows players to enter one, two or all three Day 1 flights, and if they are successful in navigating their way through more than one flight, they can add their chip stacks together for Day 2 on Saturday.

When the day began, the Crown Poker Room was bustling with activity as a large contingent of players handed over their buy-in and excitedly took their seats with hopes of realising the dream of WSOP glory.

One player who knows that feeling is Australia’s queen of poker – 2013 WSOPE Ladies Event champion Jackie Glazier.

“Jackstar” was given the honour of welcoming the players to Melbourne and the WSOP APAC. She offered a few of her favourite restaurant suggestions around town and showed off the WSOP bracelet before reminding the players that they were playing for second place! Glazier then uttered the immortal words “Shuffle up and deal!” and the 2014 WSOP APAC was officially under way.

Once registration was closed and all the players were counted there had been 197 entrants on Day 1a of the Accumulator. That’s well short of the 329 who participated in this equivalent flight last year, but there are still two more flights to reach the four-figure field size of that event.

Some of those who were at the felt at the start of the day include Vanessa Rousso, Jonathan Duhamel, George Danzer, Russell Thomas, Scott Clements, Van Marcus, Kitty Kuo, Juicy Li, Didier Guerin, Adrian Attenborough, Oliver Gill, Jackson Zheng, Jamie Pickering, Liam O’Rourke, Bruno Portaro, Aleks Brkovic, Jason Gray, Jonathan Little, David Yan, Dean Blatt, Jonathan Karamalikis, Daniel Neilson, Andy Hinrichsen, Gary Benson, along with 2014 Aussie Millions champ Ami Barer, Australia’s first WSOP APAC bracelet winner Aaron Lim, reigning WSOP World Champion Ryan Riess and 13-time WSOP bracelet winner Phil Hellmuth

Not all of the above could survive Day 1a of the 2014 WSOP APAC Accumulator as players like Thomas, Duhamel, Rousso, Little, Neilson, O’Rourke, Blatt, Barer, Riess and Hellmuth all the hit rail. One player who didn’t hit the rail, in fact he soared above all others, was Scott Clements.

The two-time WSOP bracelet winner from the USA managed to bag up 76,575 which was well ahead of his next closest competitor. Considering players started with just 3,000 in chips, Clements certainly had a monster day at the felt and it will be interesting to see whether he returns and tries to accumulate.

Some of the others who made it through Day 1a of the 2014 WSOP APAC Accumulator include Jonathan Karamalikis (30,900), 2013 WSOP APAC Main Event final tablist Kahle Burns (27,150), German Team PokerStars Pro George Danzer (24,625), Sam Cohen (19,550), Didier Guerin (15,900), Gary Benson (14,400) and Aaron Lim (10,125). The top ten chip counts and a link to the full end-of-day counts can be found below.

Event #1: $1,100 NLHE Accumulator Day 1a Top Ten
Scott Clements – 76,575
Marko Piper – 36,825
Zane Ly – 36,400
Jamie Pickering – 34,150
Jonathan Karamalikis – 30,900
Robert Clarke – 30,775
Kahle Burns – 27,150
Michael Addamo – 24,875
George Danzer – 24,625
David Leas – 23,875

Click here for the complete WSOP APAC Accumulator Day 1a Chip Counts

The final two flights of the $1,100 No Limit Holdem Accumulator Event will run on Friday with Flight 1b at 12:10pm and Flight 1c at 6:10pm, with a couple of hours of overlap between the two flights in the middle of the day. It’s going to be a big day, and hopefully one that involves plenty of accumulation!