WSOP 2012 Update: Event #1 Day 1 – Casino Employees Championship

The first event of the 43rd WSOP, conducted at the Rio Hotel and Casino, Las Vegas, was Employees’ No Limit Hold’em, requiring a buy-in of $500. It was launched with the aim of giving casino employees the chance to win a prized WSOP bracelet.

Day 1 of the event closed with 11 players waiting to battle it out on day 2. Those who finished in the top 81 positions will get a percentage of the prize pool, which exceeds $329,400. Players who make it through the money bubble can take home a minimum of $820. The top prize in the event is $70,859, and a WSOP bracelet.

Day 1 started with 732 players, a smaller number than last year’s by 118 players. Among those in the first event, were a number of accomplished players – Karina Jett (professional poker player), Matt Savage (tournament director), Sean Drake (defending champion) and Ty Stewart (executive director of the WSOP). Of them, only Stewart made it to Day 2.

Early bustouts

As the starting stacks were quite small, not many were able to make it past the first few levels. By the end of level three, the field had been reduced by almost half. With a weak ace, Jett lost her stack when she went up against an opponent with pocket queens. Savage was sent out from under the gun when he bet his last 700 with Ad-Jc against a Js-5c on a Qd-4s-8h-7c-6c board.

On level 9, the bubble burst when, from the position of the big blind, Joshua Bailey wagered his 500 on an all-in he called. Bailey’s 8s-9h could not beat a Q-9d on a board with Ac-Kc-Kh-5s-7c. With Bailey eliminated, the remaining were in the money.

In one of the last hands, Matthew Wilmont gathered the most chips when he made a tough decision. Having opened in early position with 4,200, Wilmont’s bet was called by the big blind. On a 5h-6c-Kc flop,  the big blind put close to 40,000 into the pot. The big blind’s Q-10 did not stand a chance against Wilmont’s Ac-Qc on a 3d turn and 7c river, which helped him finish with a 122,800 stack, in third position.

At level 11, the field had been reduced to 46. In the chip lead, was Saechao, who had a stack of 150,600. Close behind him was James Routos, who had 146,900.

Few female players in the game

After Bailey was eliminated in 81st place, nine of the players making in the money finishes were women. However, by the time the field was brought down to 46, only 3 female players remaine – Trish Baker, who had 36,400, Amy Brady with 31,000 and Carisa Schweisberger with 76,400.

Day 2 of Event #1 and Day #1 of Event 2 are underway. Find out all about what happens at


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