One of the most eagerly anticipated live poker tournaments of the years kicked off at Dusk Till Dawn (DTD) on Sunday afternoon when Day 1a of the 2015 Sky Poker UK Poker Championships Main Event got under way.
The 66 entries for the £1,000 buy-in £1 million guaranteed spectacular were about par for the course, especially when one considers there were more than 400 players returning to DTD for the final day of the UKPC Mini and the fact Sunday is the day of the online grinder.
After the completion of 12 levels, Sky Poker online qualifier Andreas Olympus was the best stacked played in the Main Event, having turned his starting stack into a most impressive 474,000. Only 12 others managed to punch their Day 2 ticket, among them second placed Ian Simpson (357,500), a second Sky Poker qualifier in the shape of Farhard Hatanejadan (184,500) and the British legend that is Paul Jackson (139,000).
Day 1a wasn't as kind to the likes of Neil Strike, Steve Warburton, Mitch Johnson, Alex Goulder, Chris Sly, Peter Wigglesworth, co-author of The Mental Game of Poker Barry Carter or Sky Poker ambassadors Julian Thew or Neil Channing as they all crashed out during Day 1a proceedings.
2015 Sky Poker UK Poker Championship Day 1a Chip Counts
These 13 survivors return to DTD on Saturday with blinds at 2,500/5,000/500a. There are further Day 1s on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday this week and each should see DTD packed to bursting. Do let us know in the comments box if you're planning on heading to Nottingham for a shot at the £1 million prize pool.
Sean Rigley Wins Massive UKPC Mini
Over the past week, the UKPC Mini has been in full swing with players from all over the country battling it out over several starting flights, some online at partypoker. The total attendance in this £100 buy-in event was a ridiculous 2,357 and that means the £200,000 guarantee was smashed by some £35,700 and bodes well for Rob Yong's latest large guarantee project.
When the dust finally settled – at 3:21am on Monday morning – it was Sean Rigley (pictured) who emerged victorious, clutching the winner's trophy and beaming like a man who had won £36,000 for a £100 outlay. Sheffield's Rigley defeated Lauren Render (£21,500) heads-up for the title. PKR sponsored pro and WPT500 UK champion Eleanor Gudger also reached the final table, busting in ninth place for £1,600.
UKPC Mini Final Table Results
Lead image courtesy of the Blonde Poker forum