WCOOP 2010: Bedoyiya leads Day 1 of $5K NLHE Main Event

WCOOP 2009 logo.jpgThe Main Event had arrived. After three solid weeks of non-stop action in the 2010 World Championship of Online Poker, the 62nd event of the series brought the entire online poker world to PokerStars, some to play and others to watch, as the most exciting poker tournament of the year got underway on the virtual tables.

Event 62, better known as the WCOOP Main Event, was a $5,000 + $200 buy-in no-limit hold'em tournament, complete with a massive $10 million guarantee. And when registration closed 120 minutes after the tournament began, the number of entrants stopped at 2,443 and the prize pool landed at $12,215,000. That, dear readers, was a record. Last year's Main Event attracted 2,144 players and barely surpassed the $10 million guarantee, though it still paid out an impressive $1,715,200 to Yevgeniy "Jovial Gent" Timoshenko for the win. This year, the stunning prize pool eclipsed the $2 million mark and was set to award the top three finishers more than $1 million each, with the winner taking home $2,278,097.50. It was history in the making, and everyone knew it.

Prize pool of $12,215,000. First place prize of $2,278,097.50.

As most of us tried to soak in the reality of those amazing numbers, players proceeded with the tournament. By the six-hour break, they were given fifteen minutes to breathe, while we captured some numbers. More than half of the field was still alive with chips, as 1,408 players on 157 tables still had a shot at making it through the first day. In first place on the leaderboard was Team PokerStars Pro Vashim "Markushevski" Markushevski, who sat with 145,878 chips, and in second place was jellycz with 143,780 chips. Notably, the top 100 contained another Team Pro, as Jason Mercier was in 85th place.

Vadim Markushevski - Event 62.jpg

The next break saw that only 1,152 players remained at the 128 tables, and in first place was AT11211 with 179,518 chips, followed by jersey716 with 162,571 chips. Markushevski was still strong in seventh place, and joining Mercier in the top 100 was Team PokerStars Online's Anders "Donald" Hoyer Berg. Some of the players who were not so lucky to be in the game included Online's Diego "vgreen22" Brunelli, Team Pro Christophe "chrisdm" de Meulder, David "dwilliams" Williams, and Sandra "Naujoks" Naujoks, and other well-known pros to hit the rail were Roothlus, William, Stammdogg, FatalError, THAY3R, JohnnyBax, BeL0WaB0Ve, and g0lfa.

By the eight-hour break, there were 878 players on 98 tables, and jersey716 was leading the pack with 209,662 chips and HN Kakaroto was in second place with 207,122. And in the top 100, Markushevski was maintaining a spot there and was joined by fellow Team PokerStars Pro Johannes Strassmann. Meanwhile, the Team PokerStars Pros who departed the festivities were Marcin "Goral" Horecki, Joe "jcada99" Cada, Richard Toth, Angel Guillen, Jan Heitmann, Joe Hachem, Greg "Fossilman" Raymer, Joep "Pappe_Ruk" van den Bijgaart, and Juan Macieras; Team PokerStars Online players who joined them were Denys "diatty" Shcherbakov and Sebastien "Seb86" Sabic. And even more big names out of the event were thedonator, JasonGray, SirWatts, and GigaBet.

The break at the nine-hour mark found 688 players at 77 tables, ggbman in the top spot with 413,775 chips, and it was Team PokerStars Pro Markushevski in second with 329,021. Team PokerStars Pros Strassmann and Mercier were milling about in the top 100, but some of their comrades who left the field were Vicky Coren, Lex "RaSZi" Veldhuis, Alex "Allingomes" Gomes, and Juan Manuel Pastor, along with Team Online's Grayson "spacegravy" Physioc. Among the other dearly departed were t soprano, good2cu, Xaston, jpapola, and Tmay420.

After ten hours of play, there were still 531 players at 59 tables, still more than 200 spots away from the money. Ggbman was still holding down the top position on the leaderboard with 478,194, but this time it was bedoyiya in second with 357,274. In the top 100 were Markushevski, Strassmann, and Mercier for Team PokerStars Pro, as well as LuckyGump and Chiren80 for Team PokerStars Online. Among the recently departed were Online's Martin "AABenjaminAA" Hruby and Anders "Donald" Hoyer Berg, as well as Pros Darus Suharto, Steven "stevejpa" Paul, Lee Nelson, and Veronica "Princesa" Dabul. Also gone from the lineup were charder30, Boosted J, Patrolman35, and AJunglen7.

Soon after the break, Yevgeniy "Jovial Gent" Timoshenko, the 2009 WCOOP Main Event champion headed out in 528th place, making a back-to-back run out of the question.

Team PokerStars Pro Pat Pezzin proved he was having a rough night. After just bubbling the final table of Event 61 moments earlier, he pushed all-in on the following hand in this tournament:

RSS readers click through to see replay

That was the end of the road for Pezzin, who left in 509th place, and fellow Team PokerStars Pro Sebastian Ruthenberg departed in 504th place. Jon "PearlJammer" Turner, who did make the aforementioned Event 61 final table and will return tomorrow to finish the tournament, exited this event in 457th place, and Vanessa "LadyMaverick" Rousso was eliminated in 440th.

The 11-hour break found 422 players still seated at 47 tables, and ggbman was dominating with 807,791 chips. Second was still bedoyiya with 495,439, and DDBeast was strong in third. But standings at this point can be deceiving, as HN Kakaroto previously held a solid second place on the leaderboard but exited just before the break in 423rd place.

An hour later, the break happened with 330 players on 37 tables, and the money bubble was ever so close. After 12 hours of play, a few hundred happy players would be rewarded with cash for their long day/night, but some of those who exited over the last hour, including Team PokerStars Online's Randy "nanonoko" Lew, BigRiskky, Wretchy, and genetodd, were left with no chips and no place in the tournament. The top two spots, on the other hand, were still held by bedoyiya and ggbman.

Toward the end of the twelfth hour of play, the money bubble finally approached and burst, leaving moumaife84 out in 307th place, just before the break. A collective sigh of relief was heard as players took their last break of the night and were guaranteed a minimum payout of $9,161.25. At that break, bedoyiya still led the pack with 874,231 chips, followed by jaybeastie with 783,206, but not far behind was ggbman, still at the top of the game.

The last level of the night was Level 22, and it went quickly as more than 30 players left the tables. Team PokerStars Pro Markushevski, who fell from the top of the leaderboard in the last few hours of Day 1, used queens to crack kings in this key double-up to stay in the game:

RSS readers click through to see replay

Ultimately, when play ended for the night to conclude Day 1, there were several Team PokerStars Pros left in the field, as Chad "ChadBrownPRO" Brown finished in 38th place, Johannes "J.Strassmann" Strassmann in 68th, Vadim "Markushevski" Markushevski in 83rd, and Jason "JasonMercier" Mercier in the larger field. Team PokerStars Online was represented by Bachir "Chiren80" Boumaaza and Alexey "LuckyGump" Makarov, the latter of whom was the highest ranking of them all with a 26th place finish.

Alexey Makarov - Event 62.JPG

All in all, there were 271 players remaining in the tournament on 31 tables. Play stopped to give the players a 10.5-hour break and asked that they return at 17:00 ET on Monday. They will begin play in Level 23, with blinds at 2,500/5,000 and a 625 ante.

Join us tomorrow, September 27, starting at 17:00 ET, for the conclusion of the 2010 WCOOP Main Event!

2010 WCOOP Event 62, Main Event Top Chip Counts:

1st: bedoyiya (968,412 chips)
2nd: jaybeastie (825,618 chips)
3rd: joeysweetp (611,037 chips)
4th: ggbman (585,676 chips)
5th: gkap13 (560,056 chips)
6th: Danstah8 (548,676 chips)
7th: iacog4 (530,330 chips)
8th: DiamondsChgo (529,160 chips)
9th: markwin11 (521,020 chips)
10th: GypsieChris (504,880 chips)

Team Standings:

26th place: Team Online's Alexey "LuckyGump" Makarov (386,685 chips)
38th place: Team Pro Chad "ChadBrownPRO" Brown (329,219 chips)
68th place: Team Pro Johannes "J.Strassmann" Strassmann (242,876 chips)
83rd place: Team Pro Vadim "Markushevski" Markushevski (211,534 chips)
Still in! Team Online's Bachir "Chiren80" Boumaaza (173,085 chips)
Still in! Team Pro Jason "JasonMercier" Mercier (163,465 chips)

The 2010 WCOOP is coming to an end, but all of the excitement of the series can be found on the official WCOOP website, and PokerStars TV offers tournament highlights.

Jen Newell
@PokerStars in WCOOP