Thursday, 7 March 2013
UKIPT London’s Day 1B had the Grosvenor Victoria Casino’s capacity stretched to almost breaking point yesterday as 414 eager grinders took to the felt for the £700+£70 Main Event.
Having previously known that attendance figures were going to be high and that the card room could only accommodate 430 players, the organisers made sure each opening day lasted 11 levels.However, the taxing structure wasn’t to the liking of John Duthie (out after one hand), Richard Ashby, Nick Wealthall, Luke Schwartz and new PokerStars recruit Leo Margets as they all hit the rail before the close of play. Nonetheless, the schedule worked well enough that a more manageable 89 players were left when the tournament director finally called time on proceedings. Leading the way with 196,800 chips was British amateur Luke Bird. The Chingford native qualified for Main Event through an £22 satellite on PokerStars and will face uncharted territory on Friday when he heads into Day 2 as one of the largest stacks. While Luke will be enjoying his first stint in a major live tournament, some of the circuit’s veterans will also be back in action on Day 2. Tom Hall – who is currently second on the UKIPT’s points leaderboard – made it through the day with 181,600 chips ahead of Andrew Teng (119,200), David Vamplew (99,800), Willie Tann (78,300) and Kevin MacPhee (25,500).Today’s session is expected to draw an even larger crowd than yesterday and take the total number of entrants beyond the 1,000 player mark.
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