Tag Archives: Event 13

Championship Day 1A: Tom Nguyen Draws Early Blood

$1,650 Winter Poker Open Championship (Re-Entry)
Level 3: 100/200

Following a string of calls, Tom Nguyen raised the button only to see the small blind jam. The aforementioned calls turn into a string of folds and Nguyen called the all-in bet.

Nguyen: 7h7d
Small blind: 6s6c

The small blind was at risk as the flop fell Qc5h3d. He stood and began to push in his chair.

“You might get a six, man. Don’t go away!” Nguyen said.

On cue, the turn fell the 7s giving Nguyen a set. The small blind had outs to a straight, but the river 5d wasn’t one of them. With that, Nguyen was responsible for one of the first eliminations of the day. He now sits at about 32,000.

Nguyen is a regular in the Seminole Hard Rock cash room and had a deep run in the $560 multi-flight event before busting 4th for $21,759. Seminole Hard Rock Poker ambassador Mike Laake went on to with that tournament and its $54,756 first prize.

Championship Day 1A: Event 9 Winner Dean Morris

$1,650 Winter Poker Open Championship (Re-Entry)
Level 3: 100/200

Dean Morris (London)
Dean Morris (London)

Dean Morris is another of the preliminary winners mixing it up during Flight A of the Championship. Morris hails from the U.K., London to be specific, and owns cashes in Europe, Tunica and Las Vegas. Following his Event 9 win just a couple days ago, he added Florida to his cashes resume.

Admittedly, he’d never been to the Sunshine State and made the trek over for poker. After checking out some American sporting events in Orlando and Tampa, it was a late arrival to the Seminole Hard Rock for Morris. He hopped in Event 9, and lo and behold, donned the top spot a few hours later.

“I was going to play some earlier events, but this is the first event I’ve played,” Morris said following the win. “I’m going to play the Main, obviously.”

True to his word, Morris has been here since cards went in the air. The early stages of the tournament have been a little uneventful as he holds about 28,000 chips — just under the 30,000 starting stack.

Championship Day 1A: Yon and March Lead

$1,650 Winter Poker Open Championship (Re-Entry)
Level 3: 100/200

Chang Yong has the early Championship lead
Chang Yon has the early Championship lead

Players returned from their first break of the day and we’ve already surpassed last year’s Championship start. Day 1A drew 75 entrants in 2014 and 84 entrants are registered today with over five hours to get in.

Chang Yon caught a timely gutshot draw just before the break to take the early lead with 81,500 while Tampa regular Tony March sits in second with 72,000.

March is looking for his second cash of the series to go along with his $126,000 in earnings.

Tony March (Tampa, FL)
Tony March (Tampa, FL)

Championship Day 1A: Kelsall vs. Hen

$1,650 Winter Poker Open Championship (Re-Entry)
Level 2: 75/150

Two of the tournament headliners — defending champion AJ Kelsall and reigning Seminole Hard Rock Poker Player of the Year Ory Hen — just played a small, but notable, pot.

Hen three-bet in position pre and the flop came KcJhJd. Both players checked. The turn was the Kd double pairing the board. Both players checked again. Fifth street completed it with the Ks putting a fullhouse on the board.

Kelsall chuckled a bit, and checked a third time. Hen casually plopped an orange 1,000 chip in the pot. Kelsall chuckled some more and thought out loud. After a minute or so, he admitted he was just curious and called.

“Come on! What could I have there?!” Hen laughed slapping the As and Ad together in his hand.

“You absolutely maximized it for sure,” Kelsall said of his opponents’ aces. “Now I’m short I’ve only got like 24,000.”

The put Hen at 37,000 and Kelsall just under 24,000.

Championship Day 1A: #Ambassador Sits Down

$1,650 Winter Poker Open Championship (Re-Entry)
Level 2: 75/150

Sheddy Siddiqui (Pembroke Pines, FL)
Sheddy Siddiqui (Pembroke Pines, FL)

The Championship continues to bring in some big names and we have our first Seminole Hard Rock Poker ambassador in the field. But it won’t be our last.

Sheddy Siddiqui is another player with us today from the other side of the state, coming over for a piece of the $300,000 guaranteed prize pool. He plays all around the world representing SHRP but he’s back on a home property.

Siddiqui has earned more than $1 million in his career including a deep run in the 2012 WSOP Main Event and a final table, fifth place result in this summer’s WSOP Millionaire Maker tournament.

Championship Day 1A: Satellites Still Available

$1,650 Winter Poker Open Championship (Re-Entry)
Level 2: 75/150

At the $1,650 price point, the Winter Poker Open Championship is the richest tournament of the bunch. With that, comes opportunities to win your way in at a discounted rate.

Here’s a look at the satellite events still available:

  • $190 Qualifier (1-in-10, five seats guaranteed) — Today, 3 p.m.
  • $190 Qualifier (1-in-10, five seats guaranteed) — Today, 7 p.m.
  • $190 Qualifier (1-in-10, five seats guaranteed) — Tomorrow, 3 p.m.
  • $190 Qualifier (1-in-10, five seats guaranteed) — Tomorrow, 7 p.m.

SATELLITE STRUCTURE SHEET

Championship Day 1A: POY Joins Defending Champ

$1,650 Winter Poker Open Championship (Re-Entry)
Level 2: 75/150

AJ Kelsall (left) and Ory Hen (right)
AJ Kelsall (left) and Ory Hen (right)

Defending champ AJ Kelsall has some company at his table as Ory Hen takes a seat to his left. No easy spot there.

Hen is the reigning Seminole Hard Rock Poker Open Player of the Year after a huge run. He picked up Player of the Series honors for 2014 Rock ‘n’ Roll Poker Open and 2015 Lucky Hearts Poker Open series plus three titles. Hen has over $1 million in career earnings but only one cash on this side of the state.

Here’s what Hen earned along with his Player of the Year title:

  • $2,500 entry into Coco Poker Open Championship
  • $3,500 entry into Seminole Hard Rock “Rock ‘n’ Roll Poker Open” Championship
  • $3,500 entry into Seminole Hard Rock Lucky Hearts Poker Open Championship
  • $3,500 entry into Seminole Hard Rock Poker Showdown Championship
  • $5,300 entry into Seminole Hard Rock Poker Open Championship
  • $2,500 entry into a Seminole Hard Rock Championship event
  • $10,000 cash for entry into Main Event
  • $3,000 cash
  • $2,000 in benefits for hotel accommodations and dining

Championship Day 1A: Steven Bennett Back at It

$1,650 Winter Poker Open Championship (Re-Entry)
Level 2: 75/150

Steven Bennett
Steven Bennett (Deerfield Beach, FL)

As expected, Steven Bennett is in the thick of the action during the early stages of the series’ championship event and looks to finish the 2015 Winter Poker Open in the same place he started it — the winner’s circle.

The 46-year-old carded his second-career tournament victory in the opening tournament of the WPO, a $350 deep stack no limit hold’em tournament that drew a stacked field of 741 entries. In addition to a seat into today’s finale, Bennett, of Deerfield Beach, FL ,earned $24,583 following a six-way ICM chop.

“It feels great. I never win anything,” Bennett laughed following Event 1. “I chop a decent amount, but I never win anything.”

As of now, the Championship clock shows 74 players registered with other preliminary event winners Anthony Pellegrini (Event 5) and Dean Morris (Event 9) among them. We will take a closer look at their victories later.

Championship Day 1A: Kalas Cruising

$1,650 Winter Poker Open Championship (Re-Entry)
Level 2: 75/150

Kane Kalas (Coral Gables, FL)
Kane Kalas (Coral Gables, FL)

Professional players aren’t known for their love of the morning hours. But we did find our first big name in the game very early.

Kane Kalas made the trek across the state from his home in Coral Gables for a chance at another big payout. A deep result here could push him over $1 million in a career that includes titles at Parx Big Stax IX and LAPC last spring. Kalas’ biggest result came in 2014 when he finished second to Darren Elias in WPT Borgata Main Event.

Championship Day 1A: Defending Champ in Early Action

$1,650 Winter Poker Open Championship (Re-Entry)
Level 1: 50/100

Defending Winter Poker Open Champion AJ Kelsall
Defending Winter Poker Open Champion AJ Kelsall

There is a nice group of players in the poker room before the clock hits the PM hours with 60 entrants rubbing the sleep from their eyes.

We caught AJ Kelsall taking his seat at the start of play and looking to match last year’s feat. He outlasted 296 other entrants to capture the 2014 Winter Poker Open Championship at a final table that included John Holley, David Levi, Steven Karp, Michael Laake, and Al Krux.

Kelsall is finishing out a great 2015 that includes his first WSOP Circuit ring a few weeks ago plus five WSOP cashes this summer in a wide variety of games. He hit the WSOP payout desk in Omaha/8, No Limit Hold’em, H.O.R.S.E., 10-Game Mix, and Dealer’s Choice events.