Jul 30, 2020
By Lisa Yiasemides
With PLO week behind us, and the first NLH week about to kick off tomorrow, WPT and partypoker have put together something very special for the brief spell between the two.
There seems to be no corner of the world that has been unaffected by Covid-19, which is why WPT and partypoker wanted to do something to help in these unprecedented times. They conceived of a charity event that would help to raise thousands for 1 Day Sooner (an organisation focused on finding a COVID-19 vaccine) and which would be a whole lot of fun to play too!
With that in mind, the Shooting Stars event was born and celebrities of the poker world and beyond were invited to play. Many of those agreed to be bounties, with their eliminators guaranteed $500 if they were knocked out of the competition.
So, with the first day of the two-day event in the books – who played and who survived?
Shooting Stars for Charity
The player list for this event was nothing short of star-studded. A total of 483 hopefuls took part, creating $531,000 for the prize pool and guaranteeing a donation of at least $51,200 to 1 Day Sooner!
There were 25 15-minute levels on the clock and after seven hours of play, 45 had survived to Day 2. Artsiom Prostak will not be among them after the Belarussian busted first in 483rd place. He was in good company at the virtual rail, with the likes of partypoker’s Jamie Staples (479th), WPT Champion Scott Margereson (477th), Barny Boatman (463rd) and Thomas Muehloecker (462nd), exiting shortly after.
Sam Trickett also busted early but the partypoker Ambassador bought back in and put his second bullet to great use, converting his 100,000-chip starting stack into 2,301,844 – good enough to finish 3rd in the counts by the time the whistle blew.
The only two players to do better were Finland’s Tomi Brouk (3,562,627) and German pro Manig Loeser (3,040,262) who finished up in first and second places. Mikołaj Zawadzki (2,097,169) and Daniel Sternald Petersen (1,925,512) took up the other two top-five spots, with Matas Cimbolas (1,893,500) finishing just outside of that in 6th place.
It is tricky to pick out notable survivors when so many are well-known players but among the returnees tonight are partypoker’s Nikita “Mikita” Bodyakovskiy in 12th (1,281,942), Liv Boeree in 18th (1,040,340), Jonathan Bussières in 22nd (929,338), Joao Vieira in 23rd (916,785), poker’s latest triple crown winner Roberto Romanello in 29th (738,546), former Manchester United footballer Wes Brown in 36th (565,725) and Marvin Rettenmaier in 43rd (369,555).
The bubble burst when 64 were left and Fedor Holz (66th) finished on the soft bubble, with Fabrizio Gonzalez (65th) the last player to leave empty-handed. That locked up a min-cash for Felix Van De Put (64th) who managed to sneak into the money, with Scottish Footballer Darren Fletcher also seeing a $2,400 return for coming 58th.
Elio Fox (47th) was eliminated just before the end of Day 1 and he managed to make one ladder for a $2,640 cash, which incidentally is the amount locked up for the rest of our survivors. There is a hell of a lot still to play for though with $90,498 up for grabs for the winner! Blinds start at 20,000-40,000 (5,000 ante).
Play resumes tonight at 7pm (BST) and the final day will be broadcast on the partypoker Twitch channel. Coverage is cards-up so there will be a delay of thirty minutes on the stream, which starts at 7:30pm. WPT Champion James Dempsey will be your host for this event that you definitely do not want to miss.
As well as the finale of our charity event, there will be Mega Sats running for the first Mike Sexton Champion’s Cup Event, the 8-Max Championship that kicks off on Saturday, August 1. Satellites are running for the $3,200 Main ($3 million guaranteed), $320 Mini ($1 million guaranteed) and $33 Micro ($300,000 guaranteed) from 7:30pm tonight.
With almost two weeks of events in the books, there has been some shift in the leaderboards.
Player of the Championship
Kristen Bicknell (123.08) is still in front, while Scott Margereson (86.88) moves up into second. Artur Martirosian (85.96) is close behind and Gabriele Lepore (78.66) and László Bujtás (71.65) take fourth and fifth places. Alex Manzano, who took down the PLO Championship event on Tuesday, has accumulated enough points to climb up to 6th place on the Leaderboard that tracks the top ten results in events with a buy-in of $300 or more.
Radjendernath Chigharoe (133.27) remains at the top, with Aleksejs Ponakovs (113.93), Vasilii Krasnobaev (108.52), Derrick Wall (107.12) and Arturs Barkevics (93.87) in the top five too. The Rising Star leaderboard takes into account the top ten results in events with buy-ins below $300.
To find out more about both of these leaderboards, click here.