The first out of two starting days at the 2015 bwin.be World Poker Tour National Brussels Main Event saw 144 players fork out the €1,200 entry fee. After the completion of 12 45-minute levels, 52 participants would bag up chips and Mike Gerry from Belgium was leading the field with 210,900.
Other big stacks included Youssef Hammas (184,000), Kamel Djemai and Tonny van Eck with 172,000 each, Anthony Rodrigues (152,000), Erwann Pecheux (151,200), and Bert Geens (143,800).
Two World Series of Poker bracelet winners took part on Day 1a, however both Barny Boatman and Jörg Peisert would not bag up chips.
With almost two-thirds of the field being sent to the rail, quite a few familiar faces on the international poker circuit will have to reenter if they want to continue the quest in this one. Guillaume Darcourt, Giacomo Fundaro, and Govert Metaal all busted early. The aforementioned Boatman fell in the penultimate level of the day and Jonas Lauck also ran out of chips as well, both handing over their stacks to Thomas Lust. Tobias Peters fell victim to the creativity of Omar Lakhdari and Pecheux won two flips in a row against the ace-kings of Pierre Neuville and Martin Mulsow.
The €170 satellite maxed out its capacity with 100 runners and awarded 12 tickets with €600 to the 13th-place finisher. Furthermore, the Grand Casino Brussels Viage has already confirmed 162 registered players for the second starting flight, which may require an additional wait list to get everyone seated.
All players that participated on Day 1a will likely do so again on the second flight as well, should they bag up a second set of chips, the bigger stack will be carried over to Day 2 on Saturday. Staff at the casino expect 250 or more entries for Day 1b and even the tournament area downstairs may have to be used in order to provide a seat for everyone.
Make sure to tune into the PokerNews Live Reporting section for more coverage from this event.