Seminole Hard Rock Poker Open Day 1B: Players Continue To Flock to Tournament, Guarantee Within Sight

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Day 1B of the Seminole Hard Rock Poker Open is in the books at the namesake casino in Hollywood, FL, as the day’s entries brought the total field within striking distance of making the $10 million guarantee.

As the day began on Friday, there were 366 players on the tables but some players used the day to take advantage of the amenities of the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel and Casino. After playing a blistering Day 1A (where he finished with 131,600 in chips), Tyler Patterson decided to sit with his stack and wait for Day 2. “Walking through the lobby past all the re-entries carrying my (golf) clubs like a trophy,” Patterson Tweeted, obviously happy with his play on Day 1A and content to let others who had yet to secure their Day 2 spot sweat it out for another long day of action.

There were quite a few players who had taken their shot on Thursday who came back on Friday. Matt Salsberg was one of those players, but it seems the defending World Poker Tour Player of the Year is having a bit of trouble at the Seminole Hard Rock. “UTG raises 200, two calls. Me 1100 with AA, two calls. Flop A-6-5, checked around, turn 3. Bet, call, river 3. (Opponent) has 3-3…crippled,” he reported to his followers over Twitter. Salsberg would be eliminated soon after that, but he has already stated he will be back again on Saturday to try to make the Day 2 field.

On another front, poker pro Matt Stout found himself in an interesting situation that turned into one of those “once in a lifetime” hands. Stout and his opponent built a huge pot that, upon showdown, was quite stunning when the hands were revealed. Stout had flopped top set and his opponent had flopped the middle set. On the turn, his opponent caught his case card, but the river would bring the case card that Stout was looking for. The resulting pot from the quads versus quads battle pushed Stout up to 88,000 in chips and, by the end of the night, he was in good shape for a run on Day 2 with over 155K in chips.

There were other top pros who were taking their first shot at the Seminole Hard Rock Poker Open and they seemed to have a better time of it than Salsberg did. Phil Ivey, Mike Matusow, Bernard Lee, Victor Ramdin, Allen Kessler, Cliff Josephy and Owais Ahmed were just a few of those players, joining a cadre of pros who had already been in action at the Seminole Hard Rock. Joe Serock, Eric Baldwin, Erick Lindgren, Erica Schoenberg-Lindgren, Dan Shak, David ‘Doc’ Sands and a host of others ponied up another $5000 bullet for the opportunity to take down the inaugural championship of this event.

By the time the dinner break ended – and with it, the late registration period – 690 more entrants were logged on the tournament board. Along with the 634 entries that came for Day 1A, the total number of entries to this point is 1,324 to build a prize pool of $6.62 million. To crack the $10 million guarantee the Seminole Hard Rock has put up, another 676 entries will have to appear for Day 1C, completely conceivable considering the previous two days of entries.

As play worked into the evening, there were some notable departures. Kessler was able to knock out Ivey from the tournament and, in a surprising move, Justin Bonomo went through multiple attempts on Friday to make it to Day 2. “Busted bullet #3 in 7 minutes. AK < AA,” Bonomo Tweeted. “I wonder if that’s a record!” Undaunted, Bonomo will reload the ammunition clip for another charge at the championship on Saturday.

Bonomo had plenty of company on the rail. Jason Mercier, Dan Kelly, Terrence Chan, Jason Koon and Michael Mizrachi were all gone by the time the evening’s action was completed, but there was a new overall leader crowned through the Day 1B of play:

1. Gjergj Sinishtaj, 376,000
2. Raj Vohra, 322,000
3. Chris Dombrowski, 266,800
4. Deborah Hinton, 255,700
5. Neri Sanchez, 241,200
6. Uri Kadosh, 218,500
7. Marc Davis, 211,600
8. Bradley Rhodes, 199,100
9. Kelly Minkin, 197,400
10. Ravi Raghavan, 195,900

Sinishtaj’s excellent play on Day 1B will put him atop the table – but he still has to sweat Saturday’s action to see if he will stay there:

1. Gjergj Sinishtaj, 376,000
2. Aaron Shaaf, 326,600*
3. Raj Vohra, 322,000
4. Robert Kleinfeld, 293,400*
5. Tony Sinishtaj, 267,700*
6. Chris Dombrowski, 266,800
7. Joe DeGeorge, 261,900*
8. Deborah Hinton, 255,700
9. Jarod Ludemann, 247,000*
10. Neri Sanchez, 241,200

* – Day 1A players

With Day 1C set to go this afternoon, there is a big prize for all the professionals and Florida’s top players to aim for. 300 players will take a payday home from this tournament, but the top prize is set at $1.5 million – that is, unless the guarantee is cracked on Saturday and then it will be more!

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