Posts Tagged ‘2012’
Here’s what you need to know about David Hilton. He spent the past 12 months grinding PokerStars tournaments with the kind of intensity few can imagine. He had one-figure cashes. He had five-figure cashes. When it was all said and done, he picked up a prize worth another five figures: the 2012 PokerStars yearly Tournament Leader Board title.
David Hilton, one-time runner-up finisher at APPT Cebu and one-time Super Tuesday winner, is known as “dhilton12″ on PokerStars. When all the TLB points were tallied earlier this week, Hilton had accumulated a startling 60,388 TLB points and edged “uaredead lol” by about 3,000. The result is a $ 50,000 PokerStars passport Hilton can use to buy into any PokerStars live event or big online tournament series.
You can find the full list of TLB standings on the PokerStars Yearly TLB page. Here are the top ten finishers from 2012.
PokerStars 2012 Tournament Leader Board results
1. dhilton12–$ 50,000 PokerStars Passport
2. uaredead lol –$ 40,000 PokerStars Passport
3. bob43155–$ 30,000 PokerStars Passport
4. UhhMee–$ 25,000 PokerStars Passport
5. dean23price –$ 20,000 PokerStars Passport
6. rh300487–$ 12,000 PokerStars Passport
7. UncaJ5–$ 12,500 PokerStars Passport
8. YugiohPro–$ 10,000 PokerStars Passport
9. woody1234321–$ 7,500 PokerStars Passport
10. Rounder63 –$ 5,000 PokerStars Passport
Once again, congratulations to David “dhilton12″ Hilton for this 2012 TLB victory.
Two years ago, the 2010 WSOP Main Event was down to Jonathan Duhamel, Joseph Cheong and John Racener. The latter was pretty short-stacked, making it seem like Duhamel and Cheong would battle heads-up for the title. However, Cheong basically had a meltdown and gifted Racener with a second place finish, which gave way to a fantastic Entourage cameo.
Fast forward to today, and Cheong is once again in a position to take down a Main Event title – only this time it’s in the WSOPE. He’s sitting first in chips (1.38 million) with 24 players remaining, while France’s Paul Tedeschi is a little ways back with 1.07 million chips.
Jason Mercier and Phil Hellmuth are definitely worth mentioning here too because these stars are fifth and sixth heading into the second-to-last day. The Poker Brat has been hovering around the chip lead for most of the Main Event and ended with 741,000 chips. Mercier had a strong run to close out yesterday and has accumulated 824k chips thus far. Some other big-name players who are still alive include Liv Boeree (411k), Scott Seiver (251k), David Benyamine (217k) and Andy Frankenberger (186k).
Some of the notable players who didn’t fare as well yesterday – but still cashed – include Justin Bonomo (48th, 20,150), Daniel Negreanu (43rd, 20,150), Eugene Katchalov (40th, 21,250), JC Alvarado (33rd, 21,250) and Bertrand “ElkY” Grospellier (25th, 22,982).
Action picks up again today with a number of prominent pros eyeing the 1,058,403 top prize. If we were choosing favorites, both Cheong and Hellmuth (1989 WSOP ME winner) would have to be near the top based on their previous Main Event experience. Of course, there are plenty of other seasoned pros still remaining, so it’ll be an interesting last couple of days in the WSOP ME.
Four cards. Two players. Nine rounds of heads-up poker. Such was the equation offered players in Event #60, a two-day heads-up pot-limit Omaha tournament helping to round out the final weekend of events for the 2012 World Championship of Online Poker at PokerStars.
Once registration closed and play began on Saturday, a few more significant numbers emerged. The $ 700 buy-in event had sported a $ 100K guarantee, but the whopping field of 418 entrants meant the $ 280,060 prize pool would nearly triple that amount. A total of 64 places paid in this one, meaning one had to make it through the first three rounds to cash. And a cool $ 70,015 first prize awaited the player winning the final heads-up match on Sunday (barring any deal).
Day 1: 418 to 16
The first day of play saw five rounds of heads-up matches play out, thus reducing the field from 418 players to 256 to 128 to 64 to 32 to 16.
A number of Team PokerStars Pros entered this one, with five making it through the first couple of matches to the Round of 128, i.e., the money bubble.
However, just one of those five would make it through to the cash, as Bryn “BrynKenney” Kenney knocked out Raymond Wu, floebbi beat Jason Mercier, Gakn29 eliminated Bertrand “ElkY” Grospellier, and David “MrDawwe” Sonelin defeated Vivian Im.
Of the Team PokerStars Pros, only Lex “L. Veldhuis” Veldhuis was able to reach the Round of 64 and the money, knocking out MRmagoo086 to advance.
Round of 64
Those making it this far were each guaranteed paydays of $ 1,120.24, although all were eyeing that $ 70K-plus first prize awaiting the winner.
After battling with Rodrigo “caprioli” Caprioli for a little over half an hour, Veldhuis would land one of the 32 spots in the next round. The pair were nearly even when an all-in situation arose in which caprioli had flopped a made straight plus a flush draw while Veldhuis had draws to a better straight and a better flush. As it happened, the turn and river ended up giving Veldhuis a full house, and Caprioli hit the rail.
Caprioli was joined by a number of other familiar names of players who saw their Event #60 runs end in the Round of 64, including David “Mrdawwe” Sonelin, Bryn “BrynKenney” Kenney, Jason “jdtjpoker” Wheeler, James “croll103″ Carroll, Stephen “stevie444″ Chidwick, Dani “supernova9″ Stern, Eric “jakz101″ Crain, and Ami “UhhMee” Barer.
Meanwhile, here are the 32 players who survived to play one more heads-up match on Saturday: Lex “L. Veldhuis” Veldhuis, Kressty, Ronny “1-ronny3” Kaiser, Cashcid Linc, Mefisto6661, 0Raid0, Asul, bad? huh!, osten, Murzilka_rus, The_SeS, GlidGrisen, egor1987, Ravenswood13, TryToExploit, mxny, heißtercamp, d-mon-d, lozzz, PoDoX, Le Dolce, Joe “ender555” Ebanks, Danya Kop, yeffshin, skattefar, ANIMAL5050, Gakn29, TheFish77, jellycz, jedimaster82, MiPwnYa, and p1ngp0ngpr0.
Round of 32
The next round was less fortunate for Veldhuis who failed to survive in his match versus ANIMAL5050. After swiftly whittling Veldhuis from the starting stack of 7,500 down to less than 3,000, Veldhuis was soon felted in a hand in which both players made flushes but ANIMAL5050′s was better. Like others falling in the Round of 32, Veldhuis earned $ 2,240.48 for his finish.
Here are the results of all 16 of those matches: ANIMAL5050 def. Team PokerStars Pro Lex “L. Veldhuis” Veldhuis; Mefisto6661 def. Cashcid Linc; Asul def. 0Rad0; bad? huh! def. osten; The_SeS def. Murzilka_rus; yeffshin def. skattefar; d-mon-d def. lozzz; Le Dolce def. PoDox; Gakn29 def. TheFish77; jedimaster82 def. jellycz; Danya Kop def. Joe “ender555″ Ebanks; egor1987 def. GlidGrisen; mxny def. heißtercamp; p1ndp0ngpro0 def. MiPwnYa; TryToExploit def. Ravenswood13; and Kressty def. Ronny “1-ronny3″ Kaiser.
Day 2: 16 to 1
Round of 16
Play resumed at 11:00 ET on Sunday with the Round of 16 matches. As with every round, players saw their starting stacks again reset to 7,500 chips, with play proceeding through 15-minute levels. Losers in this round would see $ 3,360.72 added to their PokerStars accounts, while the winners would be guaranteed cashes of at least $ 8,961.92.
egor1987 took less than five minutes to knock out The_SeS and move onto the quarterfinals. jedimaster82 would then claim the next spot after taking care of p1ngp0ngpr0 before they’d finished the first 15-minute level.
Over the next 15 minutes, Gakn29 eliminated ANIMAL5050 and Mefisto6661 knocked out Kressty to grab the next two quarterfinal spots. Then the start of Level 4 saw Danya Kop overcome yeffshin and TryToExploit felt mxny.
Meanwhile Le Dolce and d-mon-d nearly made it to the one-hour break in their match. But Le Dolce had slipped just below 4,000 chips to d-mon-d’s 11,000-plus when a hand arose in which both players checked the turn with the board showing [Kc][Td][Kh][Th] and the pot still a modest 1,400.
The river then brought the [5d] and a series of bets that saw Le Dolce all in with [Kd][Qc][Jh][3h] (trip kings) but no good versus d-mon-d’s [Ks][8h][6c][5s] (kings full of fives). Le Dolce was out, while d-mon-d had moved to the Round of 8.
That left just the match between bad? huh! and Asul to play out, with the pair making it past the one-hour mark with nearly even stacks. They’d battle for another 20 minutes after that before Asul finally chipped bad? huh! down to a short stack that the latter would ultimately commit on a [8s][6c][2h] flop holding [Kh][Jh][6s][4s] (a pair of sixes with some backdoor draws). Asul held [Ks][Kd][Qc][2d] (kings), and when the [5d] turn and [Ad] river improved neither player’s hand, Asul had grabbed the final quarterfinal spot.
Here were the matchups for the quarterfinals:
Mefisto6661 (Russia) vs. Asul (Romania)
egor1987 (Gemany) vs. TryToExploit (Poland)
d-mon-d (Norway) vs. Danya Kop (Russia)
Gakn29 (Canada) vs. jedimaster82 (Sweden)
All four matches saw players beginning cautiously, and it took nearly half an hour before anyone built a significant lead.
Eventually Mefisto6661 began chipping away at Asul, moving up over 12,000 while Asul dipped below 3,000. They were approaching the end of Level 2 when Asul was finally all in on the turn with the board showing [5h][4d][8h][8d]. Asul had [Ah][Ks][9c][4h] for a heart flush draw while Mefisto6661 had [Kc][Jc][Jh][8s] for trip eights. The river was the [9d], and Mefisto6661 had grabbed the first semifinal spot.
Not long after that Danya Kop joined Mefisto6661 in the semis by defeating d-mon-d. Down to 3,550, d-mon-d got it all in before the flop with [Kd][Qc][Jh][10h] against Danya Kop’s [Ac][Ks][Jd][3c]. The board rolled out [Ah][8s][5c][4s][2c] giving a straight and the win to Danya Kop.
Meanwhile the other two matches remained close until a big hand arose between Gakn29 and jedimaster82. Nearly even to start the hand, the pair got all of jedimaster82′s chips in on the turn with the board showing [8d][3h][9s][As]. jedimaster82 had [Ad][9d][5s][2s] for two pair while Gakn29 had [Qs][Js][Td][9c] for a big wrap draw.
The river then brought another ace to give jedimaster82 a full house and nearly all of the chips, and it would only take one more hand for Gakn29 to lose the rest and jedimaster82 to move on.
The lone remaining match continued, with TryToExploit enjoying a slight lead over egor1987 as they pushed through the one-hour mark. They’d fight for another hour with TryToExploit mostly maintaining the advantage throughout.
Then egor1987 grabbed a big pot as the third hour began, picking off a TryToExploit river bluff by calling with a non-nut straight to seize the advantage. Before long TryToExploit was all in on the turn with the board showing all spades — [8s][As][Ks][Ts] — and TryToExploit holding [Kh][Jc][8d][5c] for two pair. egor1987 had [Jd][7s][4s][2d] for the flush, and when the river brought the [3h] egor1987 had won and it was on to the next round.
The final four was set. On Table 1, it was egor1987 versus Mefisto6661, while over on Table 2 Danya Kop took on jedimaster82. Each player was now guaranteed at least $ 19,604.20, but winning one more match meant earning either the $ 36,407.80 for runner-up or $ 70,015 for first.
The match on Table 2 swiftly became one-sided as Danya Kop quickly scored several pots, including a 6,000-plus chip one to grab a large lead.
Then on just the 12th hand of the match jedimaster82 raised 2x to 100 and Danya Kop called. The flop came [8d][Ad][7c]. Danya Kop checked, jedimaster82 continued for 120, Danya Kop check-raised to 560, jedimaster82 made it 1,880 to go, Danya Kop reraised again to 5,840, and jedimaster82 called with the 1,145 left behind.
Danya Kop: [Th][8s][8h][6h] — set of eights, gutshot draw to straight
jedimaster82: [Ac][Kc][5d][3d] — pair of aces, flush draw
The turn was the [Jh] and river the [Qh], and just five minutes after it had started, Danya Kop had won the first semifinal match.
They had just started Level 2 (blinds 30/60) when Mefisto6661 raised to 120 from the button and egor1987 called. Both checked the [2d][Td][3h] flop. The turn then brought the [4s]. egor1987 bet 180, Mefisto6661 raised to 780, egor1987 pushed all in for 1,452 total, and Mefisto6661 called.
egor1987 had [Ah][Kd][5s][5h] for a wheel while Mefisto6661 showed [Qh][Jh][6h][5d] for a better six-high straight. The river [As] was no matter, and after another quick semifinal match Mefisto6661 had secured the second spot in the finals.
Just two players remained, both from Russia — Danya Kop and Mefisto6661.
Having survived eight rounds, the finalists were both ready to talk about a deal as soon as their match began. After a quick discussion, they agreed to chop up the remaining prize pool, leaving $ 2,000 and the WCOOP bracelet for which to play, and soon the 417th and final match of Event #60 was underway.
The pair remained roughly even through the middle of Level 2, then Mefisto6661 gradually chipped out in front. Soon a hand arose in which a flop brought Danya Kop a six-high nut straight and Mefisto6661 a set of deuces. Neither would improve by the river, but betting on all three post-flop streets saw Danya Kop all in and doubling up to more than 10,000 while Mefisto6661 slipped below 5,000.
Then came a hand in which Mefisto6661 opened for 150 from the button, Danya Kop made it 450 to go, Mefisto6661 reraised again to 1,350, and Danya Kop called. The flop came [2c][Tc][7h]. Danya Kop checked, Mefisto6661 bet all-in for 2,451, and Danya Kop called.
Danya Kop showed [Ac][Qc][7d][6d] for the ace-high flush draw and a pair of sevens. Meanwhile, Mefisto6661 turned over [Ad][Kc][Jc][5d] for a lesser flush draw. The turn was the [4h] and river the [8c]. Both had made their flushes, but Danya Kop‘s was best and another WCOOP bracelet had been won.
WCOOP Event #60 ($ 700 Pot-Limit Omaha, Heads-Up) Results (*reflects two-way deal):
Champion: Danya Kop (Russia) — $ 54,211.40*
Runner-up: Mefisto6661 (Russia) — $ 52,211.40*
3rd (tie): egor1987 (Gemany) — $ 19,604.20
3rd (tie): jedimaster82 (Sweden) — $ 19,604.20
5th (tie): TryToExploit (Poland) — $ 8,961.92
5th (tie): Gakn29 (Canada) — $ 8,961.92
5th (tie): d-mon-d (Norway) — $ 8,961.92
5th (tie): Asul (Romania) — $ 8,961.92
Places paid: 64
For comprehensive results on all 65 events of the 2012 World Championship of Online Poker, check out the the WCOOP site. And there’s still time to check out the WCOOP Radio show, too, for more WCOOP-related fun.
The World Championship of Online Poker is the greatest online poker festival in the world. This is no throwaway rinse-and-repeat marketing line. It is fact. Dispute it. Go on. Try it. You can’t. It has the largest prize pools, the best structures and puts the best players in the world on a pedestal upon which the next generation of poker legends can attempt to bump them off.
We’ve had established names such as Eugene Katchalov, George Danzer and four-time WCOOP winner Dan ‘djk123′ Kelly bink bracelets this series but when you have 65 events there’s also plenty of opportunities for new blood to come through and players that have the respect of their peers but little wider recognition, such as Darren ‘darrenelias’ Elias, to put themselves forward and demand attention.
“I just try to play my absolute best every time I sit down. I don’t have off days, I don’t play on autopilot, and I don’t have a B game,” Elias told the PokerStars Blog. “I strive to truly understand my opponents and what they are attempting to do at the table, only then can I develop counter strategies to defeat them.”
If you’re going to be a full-time poker player that buys into $ 10,300 High Roller tournaments then not having a B game is certainly a help, but Elias seems to be able to back up his claims. Not only was he leading at the end of Day 1 of the High Roller but he held his nerve to record the largest score of his life (topping his previous record of a sixth place 2010 WCOOP main event for $ 396,000 just missing out on a $ 2.3m pay day.
“When I was in first place going into Day 2 with 30 left I told myself I should definitely make the final table and had a good shot at finishing in the top three,” said Elias.
Solid grounding, different courses
The 25-year-old took to maths easily, always a good grounding for a professional poker player, and embarked upon a college education that took in a maths and physics double major with astronomy in mind. He was also an all-American in swimming and water polo and was recruited to play at the University of Redlands in California, but eventually changed his major and graduated with a degree in creative writing. He is currently working on his first novel. All in all, it hardly seems fair, does it? Then again, when you’re forced to learn the hard way getting cheated by your grandma then you’ve got to grow fast.
“My grandmother is probably my biggest family inspiration to play poker. We’ve been playing cards since I was about 6 and she used to cheat me when I turned my back,” said Elias.
The 2012 Macau poker Cup Championship began on Wednesday and saw 270 players pony up HK$ 20,000 over two Day 1 flights, creating a prize pool HK$ 4,818,960.
After four massive days of poker, the field has been whittled down to just nine players, with the below players set to fight it out on Sunday for the HK$ 1,108,500 first-place prize.
Let’s take a closer look at the final table of 2012 MPCC Main Event.
Seat 1: Ryan Hong (Melbourne, Australia) – 425,000 chips
Their are two Australians who have made the final table, one of which is Ryan Hong. The 25-year old university student has been playing poker for eight years, with many accomplishments over that time. In a very successful 2012, Hong finished third in both the Melbourne Championships Main Event, and the APT Manila Main Event, collecting almost US$ 100,000 for those scores alone. Hong started Day 3 as the chip leader with 430,000 in chips and brings just a small less than that into the final table.
Away from poker, Hong enjoys getting away for a holiday and enters the final table in seventh chip position.
Seat 2: Sunny Jung (Seoul, Korea) – 888,000 in chips
Originating from Seoul, Korea, Sunny Jung has been playing poker for 18 years, taking it up professionally in 2005. Normally a cash game player, it was a last minute decision to stay in Macau and play the MPCC Main Event, after originally planning to leave on Thursday.
After a solid third day, Jung was the first man to reach the one million chip mark. He said that a bluff against Ryan Hong early on gave him the momentum to accumulate a big stack. When he’s not playing poker, Jung enjoys eading and traveling to get his mind away from the game. He will come into the final table in second chip position.
Seat 3: Kevin Kung (Los Angeles, USA) – 469,000 in chips
Making the trek from Los Angeles in the Unted States, Kevin Kung has gone by in this tournament fairly unnoticed, but thanks to handy double up in the late stages of Day 3 – where he won a flip holding A-Q vs his opponents pocket eights – he has secured himself a spot on the final table.
With numerous cashes throughout the USA, including multiple WSOP cashes, this 28 year old, is looking to add a major tournament title to his growing poker resume.
Seat 4: Yosuke Sekiya (Matuyama, Japan) – 624,000 chips
Yosuke Sekiya is certainly no stranger to Macau Poker Cup events. Earlier this year Sekiya beat out a field of 236 players in the $ 2,250 Knockout Bounty event on the Macau Poker Cup: Red Dragon schedule. That win was good for HK$ 94,600 – which interestingly enough is slightly less than what he is already guaranteed for making the final table of the 2012 MPCC Main Event. That isn’t the only claim to fame for Sekiya though, with a career spanning four years seeing him earn over $ 100,000 in tournament winnings. It’s a good thing Sekiya says that he got started in poker because he “wanted to make money.”
While Sekiya says that he got “lucky” to make it to the final table, he has certainly shown during this event and in the past that he has what it takes to play tough poker. Interestingly, if Sekiya finishes second or better at the final table, he will move to the top of the Asia Player of the Year leader board, while a third place would see him virtually tied with the current leader, Nicky Tao Jin.
Seat 5: Jessica Ngu (Pennsylvania, USA) – 461,000 in chips
One of two females at the final table, Jessica Ngu has made a name for herself here in Macau, with numerous impressive scores over the last few years. The 28 year old has only been playing poker for three years, but in that time has made two major final tables, placing third in APPT Macau’s HK$ 10,000 No Limit Hold’em event back in 2010, and then seventh in last years HK$ 11,000 No Limit Hold’em Red Dragon Event during the Macau Poker Cup.
With a double up towards the end of Day 3, holding aces against her opponent’s pocket kings, Ngu will be looking to close in on that maiden Macau title.
Seat 6: Lisi Wei (Beijing, China) – 713,000 chips
The second of two ladies in the field, Lisi Wei has played tough poker over the last few days and has proven she deserves a spot in the final nine. Having only played poker for one year, Wei began playing with friends in a Beijing poker club and here she is now at the final table of one of the biggest events in Macau.
A defining moment in Wei’s tournament was perhaps when she held pocket aces and managed to eliminate Victor Chong, who held pocket jacks. Regardless of what happens at the final table, this will become Wei’s largest tournament score to date.
Seat 7: Robert Streatfeild (Perth, Australia) – 159,000 chips
Every year the Western Australia Poker League (WAPL) brings a team of players to Macau to take part in the MPCC. Robert Streatfeild has proudly worn a WAPL shirt throughout the entire tournament and will surely wear it with pride at the final table. Perhaps the best part of the 57-year old’s tournament is the fact that he even got to play at all. After some international banking errors, Streatfeild was having trouble withdrawing the HKD needed to enter the tournament. Scrambling around for an ATM and doing multiple long distance cash transfers, eventually Streatfeild was able to enter the tournament with just 20 minutes left in late registration. Better late than never!
Streatfeild will start the final table as the short stack, but will be looking to use all that he has learned from fellow poker friends Frank Maley and Michaele “The Butcher” Catalano to make his way to a victory.
Seat 8: Rui Chen (Anhui, China) – 1,325,000 chips
Rui Chen became the hero of his remaining eight competitors when he managed to deal a double elimination at the end of Day 3, ushering in the final table. With that massive hand giving Chen the final table chip lead, it’s hard to argue that there could be any bigger turning point for a player in a tournament. However, Chen says that there was no real defining moment in his tournament as he never had to commit more than one third of his chip stack.
The 37-year old from the Anhui province in China will be looking to use his chip lead to catapult himself into the record books as a Macau Poker Cup Championship victor.
Seat 9: Wenlong Jin (Shanghai, China) – 184,000
It’s been a rollercoaster ride for 36 year old Wenlong Jin from China. After building a sizable stack early on Day 3, a table change saw him battle it out with Sunny Jung during the final two levels, to drop him to the second smallest stack.
Not shy of big occasions, Jin has cashed in countless WSOP events over the last 4 years, and also placed second in a PokerStars Sunday Millions. Jin will come into the final table in eighth chip position.
The Punta Cana Poker Classic is an annual Texas Hold’em tournament that features a huge $ 500,000 guaranteed prize pool and takes place in the beautiful sun soaked beaches of Punta Cana, Dominican Republic. Read on to learn how to qualify for a $ 5,000 prize package that sends you to the 2012 Punta Cana Poker Classic at the Hard Rock Hotel in the Dominican Republic.
Each prize package includes the following:
- One $ 1,500+150 buy-in to the Main Event with $ 500,000 Guaranteed!
- 6 nights accommodations for two at the 5-star Hard Rock Hotel Casino Punta Cana from October 12th through 18th
- Round trip airfare up to $ 800
- Ground transportation in Punta Cana (airport-hotel-airport)
- All-inclusive premium food and beverages for two
- A welcome gift bag
- 24-hour premium room service for two
- $ 1,500 Resort Credit to spend on spa, golf, and tours at the hotel
How Do I Win A Seat?
We are holding a Step Tournaments with the winner receiving a $ 5,000 prize package that gets you a buy-in to the Punta Cana Classic main event, airfare, accommodation at the 5-star Hard Rock Hotel and all-inclusive VIP treatment. Click here for more details.
A Step Tournament is a chain of single table tournaments in which the first prize is a seat in the next step and also awards tournament entry coupons to the same step and/or lower steps and cash! It is basically a type of Sit & Go with a tiered format that gets you to climb through the Steps Tournament levels to reach the top and take your shot at winning the amazing grand prize!
You can enter the tournament in any step, starting as low as $ 1.10.
Start your Punta Cana Steps Tournament with Step 1 or any Step you feel comfortable. If you start with Step 1, it will award the following: 1st progresses to Step 2, 2nd-4th receives Step 1 Entry and 5th receives $ 0.20.
Win Step 5 and gain entry into the Punta Cana Classic with all of the amazing rewards this prize package has to offer.
Greetings from the Olympic Village at London 2012! A lot of you have been asking who I am looking at in this picture as I walk with Lithuania’s flag bearer – the legendary Olympic discus champion Virgilijus Alekna. I was trying to see if I could see Phil Hellmuth in the crowd. I know he’s around as a cheerleader for the human dolphin Michael Phelps but he’s not in the village. Probably wise, don’t need a village idiot!
Managing a team against all the NBA superstars
Last night, Lithuania’s men’s basketball team played their first game – we lost but I feel really good about the next four games. We have Nigeria tomorrow, who we should beat while a match against the USA is also coming up later this week. People always ask me about what it might be like managing a team against all the NBA superstars from the States and I say I genuinely believe there could be a massive upset here. The Lithuanians are not scared – I can see us avenging our defeat against Argentina in the semi-finals – we beat them before in a sudden death game in Turkey earlier this year.
Life in the village is great, it seems like lots of people have recognised me as when they see me they ask if poker has become an Olympic sport. Inside the village it is like communism, everything is free and it is like being on a different planet. I am so glad I have done this – I am blessed to have been given the opportunity to get involved with something as big as this. I have been involved with Lithuanian basketball for two years and once this is over it is back to my normal life, it is back to playing a lot of poker for the rest of 2012. Whatever the result for Lithuania it is about the Olympic spirit of competing.
What is poker like in the Olympic Village?
I got the opportunity to have breakfast this morning with Ruta Meilutyte, the 15-year-old Lithuanian swimming superstar of the future who has got so many headlines in the past couple of days. Under the watchful eye of her UK based coach Jonathan Rudd she has shown herself to be a real fight with outstanding talent. Her mother died when she was very young and after she broke the European record at the weekend I expect her to finish top five in the final. She makes me proud to be Lithuanian.
A lot of you have asked about what the poker is like in the Olympic Village. All I will say is the US and Greeks love to play and that the Lithuanian men’s basketball team do too (they might also have someone to back them J). Depending on results I will go to Cyprus later this week – all inclusive resort, Russian cash game players to eat – what paradise!
I also got great news from Lithuania while I have been away with the basketball team. Zasko is a daddy and his three month old son Nordas is doing very well – a potential king of the forest no doubt he is surging and stalking, just like his father and his father’s owner!
It took three days, three flights, and about 39 hours at the Rio, but Day 1 of the 2012 World Series of Poker has finally come to a close.
As we mentioned a bit earlier tonight, entry numbers were a bit lower this year than last (267 players lower, in fact) but the 2012 WSOP Main Event still managed to lock up a spot as the fifth largest in history. In total 6,598 people entered. The Main Event will pay out 666 players (yes, seriously). The winner will pick up more than $ 8.2 million.
The PokerStars stable still has an entire ranch of horses stil in play. At the top of the pack are superstars Vanessa Selbst and Daniel Negreanu, Here’s who they’ll be leading from Team PokerStars Pro and Team PokerStars Online in the march to Day 2 (we’ll have full chip counts for them when the official counts are released by the WSOP).
Moving on to Day 2: Pius Heinz, David Williams, Chad Brown, Marcin Horecki, Vicky Coren. Jan Heitmann, Matthias de Meulder, Liv Boeree, Daniel Negreanu, Barry Greenstein, Vanessa Selbst, Eugene Katchalov, Richard Toth, Mikhail Shalamov, Salvatore Bonavena, George Danzer, Toni Judet, Martin Staszko.Christiphe de Meulder, Jason Mercier, Randy Lew, Shane Schleger, Angel Guillen, Joe Cada, Fredy Torres, Arnaud Mattern, Marcel Luske, and Dario Minieri.
Eliminated: Ivan Demidov, Luca Pagano, Pierre Neuville, Victor Ramdin, ElkY, Dag Palovic, Vanessa Rousso, Theo Jorgensen, Alex Kravchenko, Gabe Nassif, Mickey Petersen, Victor Ramdin, Ville Wahlbeck, Chris Moneymaker, Jonathan Duhamel, Ana Marquez, George Lind, Fatima Moreira De Melo, Max Martinez, Nacho Barbero, Viktor Blom, Andre Akkari, Juan Manuel Pastor, and Leo Fernandez.
Exactly the same just bigger
Doing things differently
Tomorrow, the WSOP will try something a bit new. Days 1A and 1B will both return to the Rio to play Day 2, but they will not compete against each other. The remaining players from the two flights will be kept in their own rooms for the duration of the day. Then, on Wednesday, today’s Day 1C flight will come back and play its Day 2. Thursday’s Day 3 will mark the moment all three Day 1 flights meet each other for the first time.
For now now, our focus is on sleep, food, and our return for Day 2A/B (not necessarily in that order). Our coverage will resume at noon PT Tuesday. Until then, we leave you with this morsel of awesome.
Three separate starting days of the 2012 WSOP Event 61: $ 10,000 No-Limit Hold’em Main Event have concluded. A total of 6,958 starters, all of them with dreams of becoming the next World Series of Poker Main Event Champion, created a total prize pool of $ 62,021,200. The top prize, which will be awarded when the final table is played in October, will be $ 8,527,982.
Another WSOP record was broken today, when Starting Day 1C drew 3,418 players, creating the biggest championship field in history. As stated on the WSOP website, “Incredibly, no Main Event date in the 43-year history of the championship has ever surpassed the number of players who were present on this day, playing at the Rio in Las Vegas, in pursuit of a dream.”
Many famous poker players survived the three starting days, but in all likelihood, the next Main Event Champion will be a previously unknown player who just happens to hit on the right combination of talent and luck to win the biggest poker championship of all.
Last year, 6,865 players participated in the Main Event, which was eventually won by German player Pius Heinz, who captured a first prize of $ 8,715,638. The record starting field was set in 2006 when there were 8,773 participants and a record first prize of $ 12,000,000 went to American Jamie Gold.
On the first starting day this year, 1,066 players took to the felt and William John emerged as the overall chip leader of all three days, commanding a stack of 266,700. Famous players who survived the day include defending champion Pius Heinz, Allyn Jaffrey Shulman, Eric Baldwin, Mike Sexton, and JJ Liu.
Day 1B saw a starting field of 2,114 players. Among those who survived were Vanessa Selbst, Daniel Negreanu, Maria Ho, Sammy Farha, Jerry Yang, Barry Greenstein, Liv Boeree, Huck Seed, and Martin Staszko.
Survivors on Day 1C include Jake Cody, Sorel Mizzi, Viktor Blom, Johnny Chan, Doyle Brunson, Marvin Rettenmaier, Gus Hansen, Michael Mizrachi, John Racener, Phil Laak, Sam Trickett, and Phil Ivey.
The players remaining from the three separate starting days resume action on Day 2 today. At the conclusion of the five levels played, the survivors will advance to a combined Day 3 on Wednesday.
In the social study of poker players, there exists a hypothesis that one should not be first to the party. Perhaps it’s that forced, awkward small talk that happens between a host and his first guest. Maybe it’s a fear of appearing too eager. Maybe, just maybe it’s a case of “why do now what I can do later.” Whatever it is, the first flight the World Series of Poker Main Event just doesn’t get a lot of love.
Make no mistake. Day 1A of the 2012 Main Event drew an impressive 1,066 people, 19% more than the 897 in 2011. Knowing that, you should also note that 2011 had four Day 1 flights. This year’s Main Event has been reduced to three day ones, and anybody with a lick of sense knows Days 1B and 1C will look monstrous compared to Day 1A.
“Couldnt be happier considering how the day went before dinner,” Heinz said.
The reigning champ led the charge for fellow Team PokerStars Pros David Williams, Ivan Demidov, Pierre Neuville, and Luca Pagano. Pagano was gone early in the day. Demidov followed later when his pocket aces got outdrawn.
“It happens,” Demidov said. “Looking forward to 2013.”
In the last level of the day, Neuville was desperately short and clinging to life. Williams doubled twice toward the end of the day, but still finished with a short stack. All in all, Team Pro has had better days. For now, those who finished with chips look forward to Tuesday’s Day 2.
Day 1B of the Main Event kicks of at noon PT tomorrow. While Monday’s Day 1C flight will almost certainly be the biggest, we’re expecting a bumper crop on Sunday. Join us back here for more coverage then.