After just 231 players turned up for Day 1A of the Full Tilt Poker UKIPT Galway Main Event, all eyes were on the board as to what the final number would be for Day 1B. There was a €1 million guarantee, which meant 769 players were needed to avoid an overlay. After giving people the chance to register up to the end of the dinner break, the final Day 1b number was 630 meaning a total of 861 players for the first ever Full-Tilt-Poker-run UKIPT event created an overlay of €139,000.
After ten one-hours levels of action, Damian Porebski was the Day 1B chip leader with 205,200 – a substantial sum but well behind Alan Gold's stack of 270,000 from Day 1A, which came from a field that had over 400 less runners! Nevertheless, Porebski will start Day 2 in second place. Also doing well was Tim Slater who finished Day 2 with 187,500 – thanks in large part to a double elimination hand late in the day.
It happened when David Caffrey moved all in from early position for 9,325 and received a call from Slater, who was sitting on a big stack in the hijack. When action reached Felipe Feliciano in the small blind, he moved all in for 23,525 and Slater snap-called.
"Hold," Slater requested. According to the PokerNews Odds Calculator, he had a 54.43% chance of doing just that while his opponents had a combined chance of 45.33%. The flop increased Slater to 77.52%, but then the spiked on the turn. That left Caffrey drawing to eight for a straight while Slater could only win with a king on the river, which would happen just 4.76% of the time. Slater was disgusted and began to moan about the bad beat, but then the dealer burned and put out the . The table reacted in disbelief as Slater rivered a bigger set to take down the pot and score the double elimination.
With over 400 more players than Day 1A, the poker room was absolutely full with a queue quickly gathering at the start of the day. No doubt the car park across the road was equally busy as a public service announcement late in the day reminded one patron to move his car as it was about to be towed away. Among those playing in the second starting flight were Full Tilt Ambassadors Sin Melin and Dermot Blain as well as the myth wrapped in an enigma that is Full Tilt Professional Viktor "Isildur1" Blom. Unfortunately, none of the three managed to make it to Day 2 – Blain lasted the longest before he was crippled and eliminated in the last level of the day. Melin meanwhile was eliminated fairly early on while Blom ran jacks into kings just after dinner.
Some peoples' days were incredibly short like that of double-UKIPT winner Nick Abou Risk, who managed to bluff his stack into a straight flush while High Roller fourth-place finish Chris Day ran ace-king into aces preflop and admitted with hindsight he could've taken it a bit slower. Former EPT winner Roberto Romanello was another who had a short day. There were cameos from many of the original players from UK's Channel 4 ground-breaking poker show Late Night Poker, including Liam Flood, Simon Trumper and Dave 'Devilfish' Ulliott though only Flood would make it through the day – he was helped early on when he flopped trips against top two pair and then rivered quads for a full double up.
Others who did make it through included Team PokerStars Pro Jake Cody who managed to come back from losing half his stack to finish the day with 98,700. Team PokerStars Online's Dale Philips finished with 83,200 while the winner of the Irish Poker Championships Trevor Dinneen continued his good run by ending the day with 166,600.
On Saturday, the remaining players will be combining with Day 1A's survivors as they continue to play through the tournament. A total of 104 places will be paid with €2,180 for 104th while the winner will take home a huge €205,600. Action will kick off at 12 p.m. local time and the PokerNews Live Reporting Team will bring you all the details of the goings on in Galway from the first shuffle to the last river. As an added bonus, we will also be covering the €10,000 Super High Roller – that event will be starting at 2 p.m. local time.