Sunday, March 21, 2010

WPT Hollywood Poker Open Attracts 143 Players - 21st March 2010

A quaint field of 143 players turned out for the World Poker Tour (WPT) Hollywood Poker Open. The event marks the WPT’s first ever trip to Hollywood Casino Indiana, located just outside of Cincinnati, Ohio.

Topping the field after Day 1 is Eric Froehlich, a sponsored pro of Full Tilt Poker. Froehlich amassed a stack of 149,400 chips and doubled up after flopping a set of kings against another player’s set of jacks. The K-J-7 flop spelled disaster for Froehlich’s opponent and he moved to 50,000 in chips before tripling his total as the day wore on. Froehlich made the final table of the 2009 Foxwoods World Poker Finals, taking fourth place for $232,000. He holds two World Series of Poker (WSOP) bracelets, which came by virtue of winning a $1,500 Limit Hold’em event in 2005 and a $1,500 Pot Limit Omaha with Rebuys tournament one year later.

Froehlich told WPT Live Updates Hostess Jacque following his Day 1 domination, “I’m looking forward to getting some sleep. I took the red eye in from Las Vegas and that was not the best decision I’ve ever made in my life. We got in today at 9:00am and I was so sick. I put my chances of playing the tournament after flying in today at less than 50%.”

Faraz “The-Toilet” Jaka, who has dominated the live poker scene in recent months, holds a stack of 144,425 chips entering Day 2. Jaka is fresh off an 18th place showing in the WPT Bay 101 Shooting Star event last week and made two final tables on the roving tournament series in 2009. Jaka took fifth in the PokerStars North American Poker Tour (NAPT) High Roller Bounty Shootout for $95,000.

Tyler Smith sent Greg “FBT” Mueller packing on Day 1 of the Hollywood Poker Open. Mueller committed his stack late in the day with pocket queens on a board of K-9-6-K-K for kings-full. However, Smith held the case king in the deck for quads and sent Mueller packing. Smith ended the day with 58,625 chips, good for the 20th largest stack overall.

Jason Mercier, a card-carrying member of Team PokerStars Pro, selected six players in a poker fantasy draft against Full Tilt Poker’s Gavin Smith. Cash in the bet is doled out for players who make the money and reach the final table. Mercier has a stable of younger pros that includes Joe Serock, Josh Arieh, Tom Marchese, Keith Ferrera, Steve Levy, and Nick Grippo. Smith selected a group of poker veterans including Jonathan “FieryJustice” Little, Erick Lindgren, Erik Seidel, Brock “t soprano” Parker, Len Ashby, and Chris Bell.

Here’s how the top 10 stacks in the Hollywood Poker Open look after Day 1:

1. Eric Froehlich – 149,400
2. Faraz “The-Toilet” Jaka – 144,225
3. Mike Mustafa – 114,050
4. Gevork Kasabyan – 89,500
5. Jess Yawitz – 87,875
6. Shawn Buchanan – 81,125
7. Billy Pilossoph – 79,425
8. Richard Pflum – 79,275
9. Carlos Mortensen – 78,600
10. Larry Lipman – 75,000

Other notable names who remain in the field include:

11. Ty Reiman – 73,450
12. Andrew “luckychewy” Lichtenberger – 69,400
17. Erick Lindgren – 62,750
28. Bryan “badbeatninja” Devonshire – 52,150
39. Brock “t soprano” Parker – 45,325
42. Prahlad Friedman – 43,575
48. Jack McClelland – 36,500
49. Allen “Chainsaw” Kessler – 34,750
62. Brian “SNo0oWMAN” Hawkins – 29,700
63. Dwyte Pilgrim – 29,625
64. Hasan Habib – 29,000
70. Eric “Rizen” Lynch – 26,575
75. Erik Seidel – 23,450
78. Kathy Liebert – 22,500
82. Jason Mercier – 17,325
83. Hoyt Corkins – 16,025
90. Vanessa Rousso – 11,200
93. David Williams – 9,900

The tournament will award a grand prize of $391,000, the smallest top payday for a North American WPT event since the 2006 Canadian Open. The top player in that tournament took home $222,000. (Credit: Poker News Daily)

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