Day 1C of the Grosvenor UK Poker Tour (GUKPT) of 2011 had everything one would hope for in a poker tournament – famous names, spectacular hands and a record breaking entry.
Although the names belonged to “real” people rather than celebrities, when you are seated between Jim Carey, Jackie Chan and Michael Jackson it does make an occasion somewhat special. There was even a Mr Hansen in attendance – Craig, not Gus – but even his namesake had to play second fiddle to young Luke Hallinan.
What Do They Teach Kids These Days?
Luke, who is a “student” from Halifax, plays under the name of “eur0_DONK” on PokerStars – mainly on the $1.00/$2.00 cash tables but also claims a good tournament record. Luke only came onto the radar at the dinner break (end of Level 9), by which time he had amassed 170,000 and was lying in second behind Ali Ciftci. By the end of level 12 (blinds 1,000/2,000) he had increased his stack size to 309,500 and, by the close of play, headed the field of 636 with 396,900 chips. Although he is way behind Day 1A chip leader Scott Symonds (453,500 chips) and even further behind Thursday´s top player Simon Deadman (501,000 chips), this was still a commendable effort in one of Luke´s first live tournaments.
The Big Pots Start from Hand One
There was a defined chip leader after the very first hand. Mark Lucas hit a Royal Flush on a picturesque board and eliminated both Dan Torjman (Jacks full of Tens) and Roger Thomason (Jacks full on Kings) to see his chip stack jump to 75,000 (from 25,000 starting). Dan Beresford (who once cashed in an event called “The Gargantuan”) collected a 60,000 pot when his AQ found a Queen on the flop and an Ace on the river to take out Stephanie Lowe and David Jay, and Henry Nowakowski crippled Wendy Parry and busted Alan Stern when he spiked a set of Tens to dominated his adversaries´ pocket pairs.
Thomanson Back in the Game
Due to the re-entry structure of the tournament, those that had been eliminated on previous days and within the first six levels of Day 1C were allowed to pay a further £110.00 (reduced fee – all going to charity) to get back into the game. Roger Thomanson took advantage of this opportunity and justified his re-entry mid-way though the day, when his pocket Kings crippled Davide Fasoli (Jacks) and busted Mickey Oakes (Queens) – Oakes´ elimination being only one level after re-entry had closed.
A New European Live Poker Record
With the re-entry program, GUKPT qualification process and general appeal of the tournament structure, 1765 players entered the GUKPT Goliath – a new European record for a live poker event. As well as all those who cash in the deep payout structure, the Marie Curie Cancer charity will benefit from almost £10,000 due to a quarter of the initial tournament fee and all the re-entry fee going to this worthwhile cause.
When Will It All End?
It is questionable whether the tournament will finish on Sunday as scheduled. With 40 minute levels only changing to one hour levels when the final table is reached, and blinds of 3,000/6,000 when plat re-commences at noon today.280 players remain in the GUKPT after three Day 1s – most of them well stacked up and ready to do battle with the Goliath.
Leading Chip Counts from Day 1C GUKPT Goliath
Luke Hallinan 396900
Craig Hansen 367500
Deividas Jurkevicius 348700
Callum Stewart 323300
Stephen Lowrey 322600
Helen Godfrey 308000
Garry Underwood 307100
Anthony Lissner 292200
Ali Ciftci 244800
Carl Williams 244800