2007 World Series: PokerStars Qualifiers Tip the Tables as Day 1A Begins

by Craig Cunningham

PokerStars qualifiers filed into the room Friday to find their seats at Day 1A of the Main Event. For a few tables, they could have easily been playing on PokerStars as several tables were filled with qualifiers.

At Table 47, Reuben Peters from Telluride, Colorado sat in the 2s across from Kader Belbina from London in the 4s. Reuben is a stock trader during the days but plays on PokerStars whenever he can. "I play cards for a living," said Kader as he waited for the Main Event to start. Another player who can tell Kader a thing or two about playing cards for a living sat down in the 3s, Team PokerStars player Barry Greenstein.

Peters and Greenstein

Barry's three final tables including his HORSE 7th place finish, and he looks to hold onto his copy of "Ace on the River" well into next week. Reuben and Kader will try to work with their Team PokerStars neighbor to pull as many chips down to their end of the table as they can.

Greenstein and son Joe Sebok

Table 90 saw Jerry Buccilla (1s), Brian Tracy (2s), and Øyvind Efraimsen (3s) holding down the left side of the table. The button starts in the 10s at World Series events, and today there was a dead button as play began nine-handed at each table. Jerry is an investment banker from Columbus, Ohio, and Brian also works in investments. "If you need any help with the stock market, just come back here later," said Brian.

Øyvind is from Oslo and qualified in the last Sunday qualifier. "I've just finished acting school," he said. His hope is that his first big role out of acting school will be in commercials. He'd love to join Chris Moneymaker, Greg Raymer, and Joseph Hachem as the newest WSOP Main Event winner. He won't need help learning his lines, but getting the job will be the toughest audition he'll have in his career: finish this tournament on 17 July with all the chips and a new bracelet.


Reuben and Kaddo have held their own through the day. "You need to hear about Kaddo's beat," said Reuben. "It was a 25k pot, kings vs queens on a jack high flop. Blank on the turn, then a queen on the river," said Kaddo. Just returning from the break, he ws down to 3.5k. "The blinds are 200/400, so I've got one move now: push!" He was in good spirits as Team PokerStars member Barry Greenstein sat down.

Reuben was up to 24k as play began. "It's still a long, long way to go." He should know. Reuben happens to have the highest Main Event result at his table, 65th last year for a $90,713 cash (that's not counting Barry Greenstein, of course, who estimates he has done as well or better four times or more). "I haven't played any other World Series tournaments this year, just this one." He'll be flying under the radar here, which is fine for him. Dinner break is ninety minutes away, the first small step to a repeat performance for Reuben.

Brad Willis
@BradWillis in