PokerStars Festival London: Boyko Leads Huge Field; Boeree Among Big Stacks

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The PokerStars Festival London got underway at the Hippodrome Casino in the heart of London’s theatreland this week, kicking off eight days of poker. Event #7, the £2,200 single reentry High Roller kicked off today and it was a resounding success with players from all over the world streaming through the doors to join in the action.

After 13 levels of 40-minutes each, there were just 47 hopefuls remaining from a field of 178. Some of the big names who took stacks through include Javier Zarco (207,500), Liv Boeree (209,500), James Akenhead (171,500), Chris Moorman (101,500) and Philipp Gruissem (99,000). Yuriy Boyko on 245,500 is the chip leader with Julien Sitbon leading the chasing pack with 227,500.

# Player Country Chip Count
1 Yuriy Boyko Ireland 245,500
2 Julien Sitbon France 227,500
3 Liv Boeree United Kingdom 209,500
4 Javier Zarco Spain 207,500
5 Nicolos Beker Switzerland 205,000

By the end of the third level of the day, the tournament had spilled over to The Lounge and still the High Rollers kept arriving. Just before the dinner break at 7:15 p.m. there was no more room at the Hippodrome and several players had to wait a short while before they could be accommodated. In the end, everyone who wanted to play was seated.

When registration closed, it was announced that the tournament had attracted 178 entries, made up of 166 unique players and 12 reentries. This number was significantly up on the 114 entries from the UKIPT High Roller last year which this event replaced.

The 178 entries generated a prize pool of £345,000 with 34 players paid and a min-cash worth £3,110. The winner is set to receive £67,290.

Some of the stellar names in attendance included PokerStars Team Pros Felipe ‘Mojave’ Ramos and Jake Cody, online legend Chris Moorman, Spanish sensation Adrian Mateos and November Niner Pierre Neuville.

It was a day at the felt to forget for Cody though who never really got going after winning a few early pots. He was soon below average when the final blow was dealt. Cody got it in with ace-queen on a queen-high board but found out soon enough his opponent had slowplayed aces.

BOEREE WAS ONE OF THE LATE ARRIVALS WHO HAD TO WAIT FOR A SEAT. BUT ONCE SHE HAD CHIPS, SHE PUT THEM TO GOOD USE.

Cody’s second bullet started much more successfully, buying back in after the dinner break he soon doubled up and peaked at a stack of around 90,000. Alas, for the popular Vlogging Pro, the trend would go into reverse and he was eliminated towards the end of the day.

Boeree was one of the late arrivals who had to wait for a seat. But once she had chips, she put them to good use. Almost immediately she took a 20,000-pot from Morten Mortensen when she flopped top two holding ace-king. Boeree continued to chip up ending the day on 209,500, third in chips.

Some of the notables that failed to make it to the end of Day 1 include the PokerStars Team Pros Aditya Agarwal, Luca Pagano and Felipe Ramos, as well as Ludovic Geilich, Niall Farrell, Igor Kurganov and Adrian Mateos.

Action resumes at 2 p.m. local time when the remaining field will play down to a winner and Day 1a of the main event kicks off as the Festival London continues. The PokerNews live reporting team will be there to keep you up to date on all the action.