PokerStars Festival Korea: Kovalevskii crushes Day 1A

Day 1A done and dusted.

It was somewhat of a slow start with just a few tables in operation at the 2pm kick off but by the time late registration had closed six hours later there were 54 runners who put up ₩1,650,000 to join the Main Event hunt here at PokerStars Festival Korea.

Another four hours after that when it was time to bag and tag, Dmitrii Kovalevskii sat atop the end-of-day chip counts. Kovalevskii has just one live score to his name for $503 from a deepstack event here in Korea last year. After his performance today he's well on his way to adding to that list. Kovalevskii's 201,000 in chips will be the stack to chase for those entering tomorrow's Day 1B flight.

PSF Korea Day 1A chip leader Dmitrii Kovalevskii.jpg

Dmitrii Kovalevskii - Out in front

While Day 1 of the High Roller appeared to pull a lot of the notable players away from the Main Event, we still saw appearances from Singapore's all-time money winner Bryan Huang and reigning Asia Player of the Year Jack Wu. Huang was among the chip leaders at the dinner break and following two more hours of play he ultimately finished with 90,200. Wu also spun up his starting stack to 66,900.

As the High Roller began to see a few fall by the wayside, Alan Lau, Pete Chen and Sparrow Cheung all decided to try their luck in the Main Event instead. It turned out to be a good decision for all three so far as the trio survived the day. Lau has 38,600, Chen is on 41,900, and Cheung will be back with an impressive 158,100.

PSF Korea Bryan Huang and Pete Chen.jpg

Bryan Huang and Pete Chen

Red Spades Celina Lin and Randy 'nanonoko' Lew were in the building but they too opted for a shot in the High Roller. Unfortunately for Lin things didn't work out, but Lew ended the day second in chips with 203,700. The only one ahead of him is China's Boyuan Qu on a stack of 213,400.

The 22 High Roller survivors will be back again tomorrow from midday to recommence the action - and with late registration still open until 1:50pm on Day 2 they could be joined by a few more contenders. You can read more about today's High Roller action at PokerNews by clicking here.

Of the Main Event's 54 starters it looks like 17 made it through. They'll all get two days to rest up before returning on Sunday for the official Day 2. Tomorrow's Main Event action will see another bunch of hopefuls enter the poker room here at Paradise City and we'll be right here to do it all again from 2pm. We hope you can join us!

Brad Kain
@PokerStars in PokerStars Festival