It was one of the largest restarts in World Series of Poker Main Event history as Day 2abc kicked off with roughly 3,900 players returning to their seats in Event #76: $10,000 WSOP Main Event World Championship. With late registration still open to start the day, that number increased as an additional 196 players joined the field today.
A record number has already been recorded for this year's Main Event, but the tournament staff is looking at possibly cracking the 10,000-player mark when registration finally closes after Level 7 on Day 2d tomorrow. As of right now, there are just over 9,500 entries and the prize pool has surpassed the $90,000,000 mark.
That being said, it was a wild day at the poker tables with over half of the field being eliminated in the five levels that were played. When things got underway at noon local time, tables were scattered in all areas of the Horseshoe and Paris Las Vegas ballrooms but it was trimmed down to just the Horseshoe by night's end. In total 1,877 players have advanced to Day 3 on Sunday, July 9th where they will be joined by those making it through Day 2d tomorrow.
There wasn't a large increase in chips by most of the leaders from the Day 1 flights. Whereas Yehuda Dayan entered with the largest stack of 389,900 chips, when the day was completed, it was the Day 1c chip leader Christopher Brammer who vaulted to the top and bagged the largest stack with 879,000 chips. Brammer is coming off two very successful days at the table and will hope to keep it rolling for the entirety of the event. Meanwhile, Dayan bagged less than he entered with, being 360,000 chips, while Day 1b chip leader Jean-Pierre van der Spuy knew a much worse day and bowed out in the second level of play.
Other players that managed to build a big stack include Julio Belluscio (825,500), 2019 Main Event final tablist Nick Marchington (716,000), Patrik Antonius (584,500), and Gary Benson (572,000). Ronnie Bardah (519,000) and Shota Nakanishi (500,500) are also bracelet winners who finished with over half a million chips while Stephen Chidwick (472,500) and Cole Ferraro (454,000) were just shy of that mark.
Top Ten Chip Counts
|Rank||Player||Country||Chip Count||Big Blinds|
|1||Christopher Brammer||United Kingdom||879,000||352|
|3||Beqir Salihu||United States||801,000||320|
|4||John Sofillas||United States||780,000||312|
|5||Nick Marchington||United Kingdom||716,000||286|
|6||Heitor Saraiva||United States||665,500||266|
|7||Sachin Joshi||United Kingdom||635,500||254|
|8||Andrew Hulme||United Kingdom||610,000||244|
A New Champion Will be Crowned
Many players were forced to the rail and saw their Main Event hopes slashed as the field was trimmed to just 1,900 players. The most notable elimination came at the expense of the 2022 WSOP Main Event champion Espen Jorstad in the second level of the day. Jorstad flopped a set of sixes but it was no match for the flopped straight of Julian Aguirre. With the defending champion out of contention, the opportunity has opened up for a new player to grab the reigns and make their mark on poker history.
Jorstad wasn't the only notable to bow out on Day 2abc as multiple household names failed to advance to Day 3. Daniel Negreanu acquired a healthy rail of fans over on the Paris side of things but he was unable to spin up his short stack. Negreanu entered the day with just north of 20,000 chips but was never able to get things on track. Joining him on the sideline were the likes of Adrian Mateos, Alex Keating, Jamie Kerstetter, Jeremy Ausmus, and 2004 Main Event champion Greg Raymer.
For the majority of the previous Main Event winners, it was a rather successful day with eight of them finding a bag at the end of the night. Damian Salas (147,500), Scott Blumstein, Joe McKeehen (220,000), Martin Jacobson (128,000), Ryan Riess (151,000), Joe Cada (241,500), Jamie Gold (248,000), Johnny Chan (372,000), and Tom McEvoy (20,000) will all be returning on Day 3 and looking to make their way into the money.
It was a rather tame day at the tables with no lions wreaking any havoc or circus charades taking place. Guy Fieri did make an appearance in the Horseshoe Event Center as the 2023 WSOP bracelet was unveiled, but once again it was done while players were solely focused on the task at hand. Smoke filled the room with drums and a marching band which led to many players making use of their headphones.
With little-to-no drama unfolding on Day 2abc, one of the most bizarre things that grabbed the attention was the absence of a few players while their stack was dwindled down. Theodore Mcquilkin was away for the entire day due to his wife being in labor. McQuilkin started the day with 85,500 chips and blinded off to just 35,500 chips. Meanwhile, Steven Markowitz (aka Hoodie Allen) bounced from the tournament in the later levels to catch a plane for a wedding tomorrow. Markowitz will be returning on Day 3 to a stack of 124,500, granted that he makes the 7 a.m. flight back to Las Vegas.
Day 3 will be kicking off at noon local time where the entire field will play together for the first time on Sunday, July 9th. As for July 8th, there will be 3,020 players returning for Day 2d with late registration still open for two more levels. The PokerNews live reporting team will be here to grab all of the updates and any exciting highlights throughout the day.