UKIPT4 London Day 1B: Dario Sammartino leads star-studded field

Any lingering doubts as to whether UKIPT4 London was going to attract an appropriately star-studded field were dispelled at around 11.45am today when Barry Greenstein wandered into the Royal Connaught Rooms. Mr Greenstein doesn't tend to play events with £1,000 buy-ins, but he was here for this one. It was special.

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Welcome to London, Barry Greenstein

By the end of the day, the likes of Liv Boeree, Dimitar Danchev, Zimnan Ziyard, Vladimir Geshkenbein and Kevin Stani had also passed through the doors (each with an EPT title), as well as Nacho Barbero, Andre Akkari, Matthias de Meulder, Marcin Horecki, Richard Toth and Juan Manuel Pastor (all with a Team PokerStars Pro patch on their sleeve).

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Liv Boeree, among the stars of the show

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The Team Pro patch of Matthias de Meulder. And his head

They were part of a 491-strong Day 1B field, which, added to the 241 of yesterday and a handful of no-shows, gave us a total field of 747 and a prize pool to match last season's monster UKIPT. Yep, those lingering doubts didn't linger long. (The full prize pool is on the prize-pool page.)

After ten levels of play, we finally found ourselves an overnight leader: Dario Sammartino, who finished with 265,400. He was one of the first to push close to 200,000 chips, took a bit of a dip late in the day, but then bounced back to lead them all, including the 70 who survived yesterday.

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Dario Sammartino, chip leader

Sammartino is head of a pack that still includes a host of those big names and plenty of lower-stakes grinders eyeing a monstrous payday.

The full breakdown of the prize pool was announced right at the end of the night, and it seems the winner of this thing will get £136,875. Not at all bad. A min-cash, the first of which will go to the player out in 111th, is worth £1,810.

The following are also in the mix after our starting field was trimmed back to about 150.

Dimitar Danchev - 197,800
Antonin Duda - 195,500
Mathew Perry - 179,300
Charlie Combes - 163,500
Barry Greenstein - 162,000
Nicolau Villa-Lobos - 146,300
Vladimir Geshkenbein - 130,000
David Lappin - 100,000
Jason Tompkins 84,400
Nick Wealthall - 75,300
Dermot Blain - 67,700
Julian Thew - 46,000
Liv Boeree - 39,200
Pablo Rojas - 37,500
Matthias de Meulder - 35,000
Kevin Stani - 4,000

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Dimitar Danchev, PCA champion

Tomorrow is day two, when all the survivors merge and we slice the field down even further. We will likely play about another eight levels, while the £50,000 Super High Roller of the EPT also starts. It's going to be a packed day.

Rest up then, and join us tomorrow at noon. In the meantime, here are the chip counts from the notables, which will be magically turned into the full counts as and when we know them. We will also do our best to get the day two seat draw up tonight.

Howard Swains
@howardswains in UKIPT