PCA 2015: Ready or not, the Super High Roller splashes in
It's happening. Tables are ready. Stages have literally been set. We've dutifully tested the water slides and all is fine on that front as well. The new year is upon us, and ready or not, the 2015 PokerStars Caribbean Adventure is about to begin.
The $100,000 buy-in Super High Roller will be kicking things off mere minutes from now, the first of 35 events on this year's PCA schedule and the only one in action today.
While the novelty of a six-figure buy-in event is perhaps less vivid than was the case four years ago when the first Super High Roller played out here at the Atlantis, the excitement stirred by a star-studded field and super-sized prize pool remains.
Eugene Katchalov won that first SHR back in 2011, topping a 38-entry field including Daniel Negreanu heads-up to win the title and a $1.5 million first prize. The next year saw a 32-entry field and a win by Viktor Blom worth $1.254 million.
In 2013 there were 59 entries with Scott Seiver triumphing for a $2,003,480 score. And last year Fabian Quoss emerged from a 56-entry field to take the trophy and a $1,629,940 first prize after outlasting Dan Shak heads-up, the second runner-up finish in three years for Shak in this event.
A prelimary list of entrants in this year's installment of the PCA SHR issued a couple of days ago includes 36 names. Team PokerStars Pros Jason Mercier, Daniel Negreanu, and Vanessa Selbst are there, as is Team PokerStars Pro Online member Ike Haxton and last fall's WCOOP Main Event champion Fedor "CrownUpGuy" Holz.
Looking down the list, Dan Shak, Andrew Robl, Jason Koon, Justin Bonomo, Olivier Busquet, Dan Colman, Erik Seidel, and Scott Seiver are among the Americans set to participate. Stephen Chidwick, Paul Newey, and Talal Shakerchi are here with the UK. And the always formidable German contingent is well represented by the aforementioned Holz, EPT Player of the Year Ole Schemion, Christoph Vogelsang, Max Algerott, and Igor Kurganov.
The schedule calls for eight one-hour levels to be played today. Players will start with 250,000 chips, there will be 15-minute breaks after every two levels (with no dinner break), and those who bust will be able to reenter if they wish. Late registration lasts all of the way to the beginning of tomorrow's Day 2.
Introducing things today positions me like those managing the water slides here at the Atlantis. I feel a strange need to instruct everyone how best to sit in their innertubes to ready for the ride ("Handles in front!").
But really there's not a lot of guidance needed. Just relax and enjoy. Go with the flow as we present reports all day long both of today's event and what's to come. And speaking of streams, those wanting to watch the live webcast of the action today can tune in starting at 15:00 ET by clicking here.
Martin Harris is Freelance Contributor to the PokerStars Blog.