As my colleague Earl Burton so dutifully told you the other day, the $25,000 PokerStars No-Limit Hold’em Players Championship (PSPC), the most anticipated part of the 2019 PokerStars Caribbean Adventure (PCA), smashed the record for the largest live $25,000 poker tournament of all time, eclipsing the 1,000 entry mark. Another 26 players signed up before the start of Day 2 on Monday, bringing the total field to 1,039 players, exactly 400 more than the previous record for the same buy-in, set by the 2007 World Poker Tour World Championship. And even with that many people, after just two days the field is down 207 with Farid Jattin leading the way holding 921,000 chips.
Those 1,039 players created a disgusting prize pool of $26,455,500, with the top 181 finishers achieving a payday in one of the richest tournaments of all time. The winner would normally receive $4.1 million, but PokerStars is adding another $1 million to that prize, bringing it to (furious bangs on calculator) $5.1 million. The top six players will all score seven figures. Honestly, the min-cash is a little weak; 152nd through 181st place will win only $25,450, not the greatest return on a $25,000 buy-in. PokerStars did give away more than 300 Platinum Passes which included a buy-in to the PSPC, so some people in the money are likely freerolling.
Talal Shakerchi was the chip leader going into Day 2, though as mentioned, it is Jattin who is currently in the pole position. Shakerchi didn’t drop too far, though, as he still sits in 14th place and did increase his chip stack by about 50 percent.
Whereas Shakerchi was the chip leader by a sizable margin after Day 1, it is a close race at the top after Day 2. After Jattin and his 921,000 chips is Mustapha Kanit with 888,000 (too bad this tournament isn’t in China), Griffin Benger with 885,000, Julien Martini with 832,000, and Athanasios Polychronopoulos with 797,000.
Oddly (and hey, it happens), there was no reporting on how Jattin actually amassed his chip stack. With such a large field, though, it’s not easy to have one’s eyes on every player. Sometimes big hands happen and nobody is there with a notepad. When I covered the World Series of Poker for a couple years, it was all I could do to simply not get lost among the tables.
Jattin, Colombian by birth and now living in Florida, has earned more than $2.9 million in live tournaments and looks to be on his way to at least a few more bucks. He also has more than $1.4 in recorded online tournament winnings. His best live cash came fairly recently – this past April – when he finished second in the Borgata Spring Poker Open Main Event, nabbing $243,521.
The PSPC continues today, as the money bubble will burst, after which one would expect to see a spree of eliminations.
2019 PokerStars No-Limit Hold’em Players Championship – Day 2 Chip Leaders
1. Farid Jattin – 921,000
2. Mustapha Kanit – 888,000
3. Griffin Benger – 885,000
4. Julien Martini – 832,000
5. Athanasios Polychronopoulos – 797,000
6. Samuel Tsehai – 750,000
7. Martins Adeniya – 748,000
8. Brandon Adams – 731,000
9. Marc Perrault – 725,000
10. Ramin Hajiyev – 720,000