There were exactly 300 entries on Day 1b at the World Poker Tour (WPT) Choctaw $3,800 buy-in event, but only 92 of them will be advancing to Sunday’s Day 2 session.
While there were a number of big name players who bagged, and multiple monster stacks, everyone finished with an inferior stack compared to Jesse Jones who won a massive pot against Megan Moore late on Saturday that catapulted him into the chip lead.
The WPT’s live reporting team caught the action on a board of 4♠10♦7♥Q♠6♥ in an already bloated pot. Jones had bet 243,000 chips on the river and Moore frustratingly folded her hand. Neither hands were exposed so we can’t tell you if he was bluffing or what she folded. But the pot was crucial as it put him over the 600,000-chip mark. He finished the session with 631,000 (252 big blinds). Moore had a setback but still finished with a healthy 301,000-chip stack.
Bryan Campanello, who busted former WPT Player of the Year Ray Qartomy twice in the same day, is the only other player over 600,000 — he finished with 610,000.
Huge Paydays are on the Horizon
The official Day 1b chip counts weren’t available at the time of publishing, but we do have the payouts now that registration has closed. First place will take home $400,740 and the runner-up will receive $261,000. All six players who reach the final table, which will take place in Las Vegas on May 26, will have a guaranteed minimum payout of $81,700. A min-cash — 71st to 77th place — is worth $6,980.
There were 95 survivors on Day 1a and 92 on Day 1b, which means 187 will return to the Grand Theater at Choctaw Casino & Resort on Sunday at noon CT. The bubble will burst before the day concludes.
Andrew Moreno finished Day 1a with the biggest stack at 510,500, which would have been good for fourth place on Day 1b.
WPT Choctaw, as is always the case, attracted some of the top players in the game to Durant, Oklahoma. That includes some past World Poker Tour champions such as Eric Afriat and Erkut Yilmaz. ClubWPT qualifier Felipe Diaz, a 36-year-old butcher from Wisconsin, ended the day with 188,000 chips. Both ClubWPT qualifiers, the second being Jonathan Powers, are on to Day 2 with above average stacks.
Jones has just four previous small cashes on the World Poker Tour totaling $36,000. But he has over $500,000 in overall live tournament cashes, according to Hendon Mob. He would nearly double that if he were to go wire-to-wire for the title at Choctaw.
*Images courtesy of WPT.