WPT Jacksonville exceeds all expectations

Posted by Steve Ruddock on Nov 20, 2011 Posted in Poker News | No Comments »

As a new stop on the World Poker Tour –not to mention having the dubious honor of being the first WPT Main Event in the US that will not air on TV—the WPT treated the Jacksonville Championship with very low expectations, pinning a mere $500k guarantee to the tournament.

Well, the $500k guarantee was eclipsed on Day 1a of the tournament as 188 players registered for the $3,500 buy-in Championship. Day 1b saw an even larger thanks to the reentry format the tournament used, as 205 players registered for the second starting day. Overall the WPT Jacksonville boasted 393 entrants, bringing the total prize-pool to a very respectable of $1,227,250. For a tournament expected to award a first-place prize in the $100k range, the $325k that will go to the winner absolutely shattered expectations.

Not only did the WPT Jacksonville attract a large number of entrants, but it also drew some of the top players in the game including Jason Mercier, Jonathan Little, John Racener, Allen Kessler, David Pham, Nick Schulman, Dwyte Pilgrim, Victor Ramdin, Jason Mercier, Will Failla, Shaun Deeb, and Matthew Jarvis.

A total of 168 of the original 393 players will return to the tables on Sunday for Day 2 of the tournament, led by Tommy Vedes, the only player to crack the 200k chip-mark. Here is a look at the top 10 chip-counts heading into Day 2:

1. Tommy Vedes — 209,200

2. Matthew Jarvis — 190,300

3. Eli Gomez — 181,300

4. Shaun Deeb — 174,900

5. Imari Love — 172,000

6. David Pham — 165,600

7. Barry Wiedemann — 162,100

8. Michael Swimelar — 158,100

9. Nicholas Grippo — 149,600

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