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WSOP Circuit National Championship Day 1: La Sengphet Chip Leader with 35 Remaining

La Sengphet

For the past nine months, the 2010-2011 World Series of Poker Circuit has traveled to 15 different venues, offering 154 gold-ring events, and attracted more than 20,000 poker players to its tournaments, each looking to qualify for the inaugural National Championship $1,000,000 Freeroll. After months of hard work, 100 qualifiers made their way to Las Vegas to compete for the $300,000 first-place prize and the first WSOP bracelet of the year.

Day 1 of the National Championship saw nearly all of the 100 qualified players actually take their seats. Unfortunately, a few of players were unable to attend for a plethora of reasons including Brett Richey, Gary Friedlander, and Dennis Summers. While some missed the golden opportunity to compete in the prestigious event, others were intent on taking advantage of their chance, perhaps none more so than La Sengphet, who emerged as the Day 1 chip leader with 165,000.

After eight levels of play, only 35 players remained. Joining Sengphet among the chip leaders are Jonathon Poche (121,400), Shiva Dudani (96,000), and Curt Kohlberg (94,600). A number of notable names are also still in the field including Allen Kessler, Bernard Lee, Charles “Woody” Moore, Dwyte Pilgrim, Chris Klodnicki, and WSOP-C poster boy Kyle Cartwright. In addition, Traci Brown, who along with Sengphet comprised the only two women in the field, managed to make it to Day 2. Sarah Grant caught up with Pilgrim on an earlier break Friday to discuss his WSOP plans and his table mate and fellow survivor Cartwright.

While those players thrived, many failed to survive. Among those who hit the rail were World Poker Tour Player-of-the-Year Andy Frankenberger, Ali Eslami, Steve Zolotow, David “Doc” Sands, Steven Brecher, Allie Prescott, and Shannon Shorr.

Here is a look at the seating assignment and chip counts headed into Day 2.

Table 22

SeatPlayerChip Count
1Jesus Cabrera61,100
2Tuan Bui Le20,800
4La Sengphet165,000
5Drazen Ilich66,600
6Shiva Dudani96,000
7Kunal Patel27,600
8Huy Nguyen122,700
9Jonathon Poche121,400

Table 23

SeatPlayerChip Count
1Mark Sykes30,400
2Adam Hui75,100
3Charles “Woody” Moore95,100
4Matthew Lawrence57,600
5Scott Clark38,600
6Roland Isra64,000
7Robert Scott14,800
8Tim West53,500
9Brian Ali13,900

Table 24

SeatPlayerChip Count
1Peter Mavro49,500
2Curt Kohlberg94,600
3Allen Kessler23,100
4Jim Anderson25,500
5Harry Cullen40,700
6Kyle Cartwright51,300
7Traci Brown33,500
8Josh Evans32,300
9Stanley Quinn92,600

Table 26

SeatPlayerChip Count
1Chris Klodnicki51,000
2Kenny Ngueyn22,000
3Andrew Barber56,100
4Bernard Lee70,900
5Sam Barnhart23,800
6DJ Blanchard24,100
7Peter Ippolito36,100
8Dwyte Pilgrim36,300
9Doug Carli72,800

Day 1 of the National Championship certainly delivered top-notch poker action, living up to all the anticipation and hype. On Saturday, the remaining players will return to play down to the final nine and the first-ever WSOP-C National Championship final table. Action is set to resume at 1200 PDT (1900 GMT), so be sure to join us then for all the live updates from Caesars Palace in Las Vegas.

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