It was the fourth time the Unibet Open poker tour headed to Copenhagen, but it was the first time the tournament was held in the summer. And wouldn't you know it, it was the warmest day of the entire year in the Danish Capital. While the sun was shining outside, 153 players started their day inside the beautiful Casino Copenhagen for Day 1a.
Kenny Hallaert welcomed everyone at noon and started off his first Unibet Open as tournament director. The poker player from Belgium had already signed on as part of the team before he headed to Vegas this summer, where he made his way to the final table of the WSOP Main Event. We're pretty sure it's the first time a November Niner was in control of a major European poker tournament.
One of his first decisions was to change from the planned 10 levels to 9 levels. That gave the 52 survivors of the day opportunity to have a couple more drinks at the welcome party. Because, as per tradition, the Unibet Open wanted to make their poker tournaments about more than a card game. That's why there's a bunch of players planning to go to Urban Ranger Camp on Saturday, and there's a huge party on one of the rooftop bars of Copenhagen later on.
But for the players that signed up, it was about the poker. And there was a lot of poker to be played. During the nine levels of play, we saw some incredible hands, including a straight flush, quads and also some intense action at the live streamed feature table.
Three former champions started the day and two of them made it through to the Day 2. Theis Vad Hennebjerre won in Copenhagen last year beating a field of 460 strong and was back at it today. So far he's one for one, and still in contention to make it two for two. Hennebjerre's sole cash on his HendonMob profile is still his win at this event last year. Can he add another one this week? He started out strong building a stack worth three-times what he started with, but lost a bunch with ace-nine to queens preflop all in. He ended the day with 47,700.
The other former Unibet Open champion, Daniel Chutrov, also made it through the day. The Glasgow champ built his stack up without huge pots or notable hands and will start Day 2 on Saturday with 79,800 in chips.
The chip leader finishing Day 1a is Mudassar Khan from Denmark. The local gathered a massive 272,000 in chips from a starting stack of 30,000, good for 137 big blinds on Saturday.
Tomorrow, Day 1b of the Unibet Open Copenhagen awaits. Another slate of nine, one-hour long levels are scheduled and again PokerNews will be on-site for coverage from the floor.
Photos by Tambet Kask, Unibet Open
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