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Tuesday, July 7, 2009 | Francis Lee


The biggest poker tournament on the planet, the $10,000 World Series of Poker main event has started at the Rio in Las Vegas.  Players has a choice of what day to start with four staring days to pick from, before the survivors of each day is brought together in the countdown to find the 2009 World Poker champion.  As like last year the final table of nine will battle it out in November.

1,116 players took to the felt on the first starting day (day 1a) which included poker pro’s, amateurs and famous celebrities from TV and sport.  The celebrities included the likes of Shane Warne, Orel Hershiser, Brad Garrett, Jason Alexander and rap star Nelly.  Former WSOP main event champions Johnny Chan, Jerry Jang and Berry Johnston was in the field along with 2009 WSOP bracelet winner’s Vitaly Lunkin, Greg Mueller, Zac Fellows and Ronald De Wolfe.  Also spotted taking there seats were Gavin Smith, Tony G, Phil Laak, Jenifer Tilly, Eli Elezra and Nikolay Evdakov to name a few.

Once the cards were in the air the eliminations came thick and fast with some notable names heading for the rail.  John Phan was one of the first players out in the first level of play as first his pocket Queens was cracked by :7c :8c as his opponent hit a straight on the Turn.  Then moments later Phan got the last of his chips in with pocket Aces only for them to be beaten by :ks :9s Rap star Nelly was an early casualty when his pocket Queens lost out to :9h :10c hitting trip nines on the Flop.

As the day went on the notable eliminations included Zac Fellows, Mark Vos, and base ball star Orel Hershiser.  The 2007 champion Jerry Jang had a bad day eventually running a short stack into :ac :kd with just :jd :7d Jang had a chance after hitting a Seven on the Flop but the King on the Turn ended his day.  As the day drew to a close Allen Cunningham failed to survive into day 2 along with Isaac Haxton.

Just 821 players survived with Redmond Lee leading the field on $134,275.  The notable names to make day two included Eli Elezra, Tom Schneider, Tony G, Roland De Wolfe, Phil Laak, Jimmy Fricke, Jason Alexander, and Johnny Chan.

Top 10 Leader Board After Day 1A

  • 1st Redmond Lee $134,275
  • 2nd Jean Docquier $122,755
  • 3rd Marcucci Gianluca $118,000
  • 4th Peter Buermann $117,400
  • 5th Ebrahim Mourshaki $116,025
  • 6th Balaz Botond $113,000
  • 7th Alexander Grishchuk $111,875
  • 8th Jimmie Guinther $110,425
  • 9th Arthur Rhea $109,275
  • 10th Joe Luht $108,125



  • » July 16th, 2009 at 10:57 pm

    Thanks for such a thorough post on the World Series of Poker. Does anyone know when it will be aired on tv?


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