It was close, but the first bracelet of the 2014 World Series of Poker still has yet to be awarded. Event #1: $500 Casino Employees No-Limit Hold’em wound deep into the night before play was stopped with two players still remaining, Roland Reparejo and Corey Emery (pictured at right).
Those two will return Thursday afternoon to complete their heads-up duel. Meanwhile, Event #2: $25,000 Mixed-Max No-Limit Hold’em played down to 16 players on Wednesday with Al Decarolis leading a stacked remaining field. And Event #3: $1,000 Pot-Limit Omaha got underway with a record-setting turnout of 1,128 playing down to 106 and Loren Klein the overnight chip leader.
Wednesday began with expectations that the first gold bracelet of the summer would be claimed in Event #1: $500 Casino Employees No-Limit Hold’em. A total of 51 survivors from a starting field of 876 returned, and nearly 14-and-a-half hours after they started two still had chips — Roland Reparejo and Corey Emery.
The pace was rapid to start yesterday, with the 51 playing down to a final table of nine before the dinner break began and start-of-day-2 chip leader Emery still the big stack. Among those falling during the afternoon were Chris Danek (45th, $1,813), Ray Kluever (37th, $1,813), Sergio Trevino (26th, $2,585), PokerNews reporter Mo Nuwwarah (19th, $2,585), and Peter Alba (17th, $3,157).
The knockouts came more slowly thereafter, however, and it would take 187 hands before Charles Nguyen was eliminated in third and heads-up play began with the clock approaching 3 a.m. Reparejo and Emery would play just eight hands more, with Reparejo managing to double up in the last hand of the night in which Emery turned top pair of kings then Reparejo rivered a set of sixes.
That hand will give Reparejo the advantage when play resumes at 2 p.m. on Thursday with 1,795,000 chips to Emery’s 735,000.
Event #1 Final Table Results
Hand-for-hand coverage of the first final table of the summer will continue on the live reporting blog when play resumes.
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The $25,000 Mixed-Max No-Limit Hold’em event marched on with the 60 survivors from a starting field of 131 playing down to 16 on Wednesday. With many of the poker world’s top pros involved in this one, restaurant owner Al Decarolis ended the night with the chip lead with 1,261,000, just barely ahead of JC Tran, start-of-day-2 leader Vanessa Selbst, and Jason Mo.
The “mixed-max” format dictated a change from nine-handed to six-handed play for Day 2, and after many big names fell the greatest excitement of the night came as they neared the final 16 and the bursting of the money bubble.
The day’s final two knockouts were of players high on the WSOP all-time bracelet list, as nine-time winner Phil Ivey went out in 18th, then five-time winner John Juanda bubbled in 17th.
Ivey’s last hand saw him all in following a flop against Tran. Ivey had for a Broadway straight, but Tran had flopped a flush with . A fell on the turn to provide chop outs and extend the drama a little further, but the river was a blank and Ivey was out. Robert Tepper then eliminated Juanda in 17th in the final hand of Day 2.
Here’s how the chip counts look among the final 16:
Event #2 Chip Counts After Day 2
They’ll now switch to four-handed play for Day 3 of Event #2, with coverage continuing on the live reporting blog.
Finally, the first low buy-in “open” tournament of 2014 kicked off on Wednesday with the $1,000 pot-limit Omaha event, and as expected a huge field of players turned out to participate. In fact, the turnout was record-setting, as WSOP Executive Director Ty Stewart confirmed via Twitter yesterday:
Way to go PLO sickos. That ladies+gents (1072) is the biggest live tourney outside NLHE evah evah evah #wsop2014 http://t.co/9zC0gsEb7rFollow @wsopSUITd
Stewart’s news came as Event #3 passed the previous largest “evah” field for a non-hold’em event at the WSOP when 1,071 players played the $1,500 pot-limit Omaha event in 2011. When late registration concluded the field would swell further to 1,128 total, creating a total prize pool of $1,015,200 with $205,634 of that reserved for the eventual champion.
Loren Klein has positioned himself for a possible deep run in this one, having ended Day 1 with 133,900 and a decent-sized chip lead over the rest of the field. The money bubble burst near night’s end as the top 117 places pay and just 106 made it through to Day 2.
Here’s how the top of the leaderboard looks at the moment, with Ashton Griffin, Doug Polk, and Greg Merson among other notables returning to above-average stacks.
Event #3 Top 10 Chip Counts After Day 1
Continue to follow coverage of Event #3 today on our live reporting blog.
Thursday will see more events getting started at the Rio All-Suite Hotel and Casino as the 2014 WSOP schedule continues to get busier.
Both Event #2: $25,000 Mixed-Max No-Limit Hold’em and Event #3: $1,000 Pot-Limit Omaha move into their penultimate days of play, with bracelets in those two events due to be won on Friday. Two new events get started, Event #4: $1,000 No-Limit Hold’em and the first of the $10K “Championship” events on the schedule, Event #5: $10,000 Limit 2-7 Triple Draw Lowball. Meanwhile, the completion of heads-up play in Event #1: $500 Casino Employees No-Limit Hold’em will begin at 2 p.m.
- 12:00 p.m. — Event #4: $1,000 No-Limit Hold’em (Day 1 of 3)
- 1:00 p.m. — Event #3: $1,000 Pot-Limit Omaha (Day 2 of 3)
- 2:00 p.m. — Event #1: $500 Casino Employees No-Limit Hold’em (Day 3 of 3)
- 2:00 p.m. — Event #2: $25,000 Mixed-Max No-Limit Hold’em (Day 3 of 4)
- 4:00 p.m. — Event #5: $10,000 Limit 2-7 Triple Draw Lowball (Day 1 of 3)
Video of the Day
Vanessa Selbst continues to maintain a big stack in the $25K Mixed-Max. She spoke with Amber Fukuda yesterday about how things were going, in particular discussing her knockout of Dan Cates. Watch and hear Selbst describe how Cates did a “typical Jungleman” in her hand against him.