Day 1 of the $1,500 Pot-Limit Hold’em event is completed and what a fantastic day of poker it was. By the time registration closed there were 557 player who had bought in. Fast forward to the end of the tenth level of play and only 69 of those had chips that they needed to bag up.
One man who has chips aplenty is Russia’s David Martirosyan who had the welcomed problem of figuring out how to cram 119,500 chips into his overnight chip bag.
Martirosyan first came to our attention during the last level of the night when he made a big lay down that ultimately saved his tournament life. Jesse Yaginuma raised to 2,000 from the cutoff, Martirosyan three-bet to 6,000 from the small blind and Yaginuma called.
The flop came down and Martirosyan led for 5,000 and Yaginuma called. Martirosyan fired again on the turn, making it 11,500 to play. Again, Yaginuma called. The river was the and Martirosyan tapped the table and checked only to see Yaginuma move all-in.
Martirosyan went deep into the tank for several minutes before folding his hand. He would later inform us that he “made a big fold.”
As play was drawing to a close, Martirosyan doubled through Yaginuma when the chips went into the middle of a flop, Martirosyan holding and Yaginuma . A on the turn saw Martirosyan fall way behind but a spiked on the river to gift him a straight and the double up was complete.
A couple of hands later he got his stack in with and ran into the of Shankar Pillai. Again the turn came to Martirosyan’s rescue as he hit the to improve to a set. That hand pushed him to 95,000 and he added an additional 20,000 before play ended for the night.
Martirosyan’s nearest rival ended Day 1 only 1,900 chips behind him. Matt Damadeo was down to 2,550 during the early levels, but quadrupled up in a crazy four-way all-in. Damadeo took full advantage of his new chips and ended with 117,500.
Joining Martirosyan and Damadeo on Day 2 are some of poker’s most talented players. Joseph Cheong (67,200), Jesse Yaginuma (52,500), Darryll Fish (49,500), Phil Collins (39,700), David Peters (31,400), Phil Ivey (31,300), reigning world champion Ryan Riess (27,700), Keven Stammen (20,000) and Marvin Rettenmaier are all still in the hunt for the $169,225 first place prize and the coveted gold bracelet.
Play resumes at 1p.m Las Vegas time and the money bubble should burst during the first level of play because only 69 players are returning and 63 of those get paid.
Lock your browsers to PokerNews.com and return to our Live Reporting pages on Wednesday at 1 p.m. as we continue our coverage of Event #12 of the 2014 World Series of Poker.