The first-ever $25,000 Heads-Up Championship is two rounds old, and we've reduced our 128 starting players down to just 32. As you'd expect with an event with this kind of price tag, the field was small and elite and mostly made up of familiar faces. David Williams, Daniel Negreanu, Phil Laak, Jason Mercier, and Michael Mizrachi all fell to their first round opponents. Dan Cates, Erick Lindgren, Scott Seiver, David Baker, Vanessa Rousso, Jonathan Duhamel, Shaun Deeb, and Scott Clements advanced through one round before succumbing in the second round of the night. Just to name a few.
That's a pretty solid crew of already-eliminated players, but we're still flush with talent in this thinning field. John Duthie finished second (to Leo Wolpert) in the $10,000 Heads-Up event here in 2009, and he's still alive with his sights set on Carlos Mortensen in Round 3. In the European version of this event, Gus Hansen took home a bracelet for shipping the £10,000 Heads-Up event at the WSOP-E last fall, and he'll face off against Daniel Alaei in tomorrow's afternoon battle. We've also got Chris Moorman, Olivier Busquet, John Juanda, David Benyamine, Andrew Robl, Yevgeniy Timoshenko, and the Tom Dwan. Told you it was a stacked field.
Here's how the rest of the bracket draws out for tomorrow's money round:
David Benyamine vs. Anthony Guetti
Chris Moorman vs. Richard Lyndaker
Dani Stern vs. Jake Cody
Isaac Haxton vs. Jonathan Jaffe
Ashton Griffin vs. Tom Dwan
Daniel Alaei vs. Gus Hansen
Steve Billirakis vs. Trevor Pope
Matt Marafioti vs. Maxim Lykov
Eric Froehlich vs. Steve Zolotow
John Duthie vs. Carlos Mortenson
Jason Smirnov vs. Darren Elias
Erik Cajelais vs. Nikolay Evdakov
Yevgeniy Timshenko vs. Amritraj Singh
Oliver Busquet vs. Andrew Robl
Kunimaro Kojo vs. Nick Shulman
David Paredes vs. John Juanda
That's all we have from the Rio for tonight, but we want to thank you for joining us today to kick off this 2011 WSOP. There's plenty more tomorrow (and for the next seven weeks), so keep your browser pointed here as we tick bracelets off the list bit by little bit. We've still got three more days of play before we crown a champion in this event, and play resumes at 3:00 P.M. tomorrow with a TBD number of rounds -- possibly even just one.
Until tomorrow, all that's left is goodnight.