Steven Wolansky Leads Whirlwind $1,000 No-Limit Hold'em (30 minute levels) After Day 1
A starting field of 1,712 in Event #45: Big Blind Antes $1,000 No-Limit Hold'em (30 minute levels) was whittled down to just 41 players after 20 levels of play. Leading the way is two-time WSOP bracelet winner Steven Wolansky.
Wolansky was boosted by eliminating 2015 November Niner Pierre Neuville late in the day. Getting it in with ace-eight of hearts against the ace-queen of his Belgian opponent, Wolansky went runner-runner to river a flush and send his opponent to the rail in a hand that saw him take over the chip lead.
Other big stacks include DJ MacKinnon (532,000), Michael Wang (355,000), King Lun Alan Lau (350,000), Mike Hauptman (338,000), Lander Lijo (290,000), Joseph Cheong (280,000) and Robin Hegele (245,000). There are plenty of big names still in the hunt including another two-time bracelet winner, Athanasios Polychronopoulos (156,000), as well as Women in Poker Hall of Famer and WSOP bracelet winner Kathy Liebert (245,000), 2017 $25,000 Pot-Limit Omaha third-place finisher Esther Taylor (126,000), as well as Kelly Minkin (136,000).
There were several familiar faces from WSOP No-Limit Hold'em tournaments, including former Main Event champions Joe McKeehen, Martin Jacobson, Greg Raymer and Ryan Riess, 2014 WSOP APAC champion Scott Davies, bracelet winners Loni Harwood, Heidi May, Nipun Java, Michael Gathy, Niall Farrell, Ben Keeline, David "ODB" Baker and Chris Moorman, but they all bowed out during the quickly-paced day.
The early chip leaders were Maria Konnikova and Stephen Song but as the eliminations mounted and the bubble approached, Bart Lybaert and Pierre Neuville both started to chip up. The tournament went on dinner one elimination away from the money, and it didn't take long afterwards for the bubble to burst, guaranteeing the top 257 players at least $1,502.
Notable eliminations in the money included Kenny Hallaert (251st - $1,501), Aditya Agarwal (246th - $1,501), Steven van Zadelhoff (230th - $1,549), Maria Konnikova (227th - $1,549), Tristan Wade (221st - $1,549), Barry Greenstein (209th - $1,549), 888Poker Team Pro Chris Moorman (181st - $1,621), Jesse Capps (177th - $1,720), Kristen Bicknell (175th - $1,720), 2018 WSOP bracelet winner Benjamin Dobson (156th - $1,720), Nipun Java (150th - $1,851), Bart Lybaert (110th - $2,019), Brian Yoon (85th - $2,503), Loni Harwood (74th - $2,843),
The tournament resumes tomorrow at 12 p.m. as they play down to a winner. First prize is $258,255 and a WSOP gold bracelet, and there are still plenty of top names in contention, so stay tuned to PokerNews for all the coverage.