MONTE-CARLO, MONACO, November 9, 2004 – It was an exciting first day at the Monte Carlo Millions, the world’s most exclusive poker tournament, where international pros and satellite winners alike played their hearts out for a chance to become the first champion of this historical event. After a brief press conference with French singing sensation and poker champ Patrick Bruel, poker pros Barny Boatman and Howard Lederer and Tournament Director Matt Savage, play began at 12:00 noon in the Sporting d’Hiver in Monte-Carlo. This is the first time in history that a poker tournament has been played in the principality of Monaco.
Matt Savage announced the top finishers at the close of an exciting day one. From the outset, Phil Ivey built up an impressive run and maintained his position as chip leader, finishing the day with $187,500 in chips. After twelve hours of play, Mr. Ivey lost only one pot to his rivals at the table. Phil is followed into day two by Juha Hellpi with $111,000 and the very skilled PrimaPoker.com satellite winner, Clint Richardson, with $91,600.
In other exciting news:
Giants in the sport fell early in the tournament, including Antonio Esfandiari, who was the first man out, followed shortly thereafter by two-time 2004 WSOP bracelet winner Scott Fischman as well as Phil “The Unibomber” Laak, Scotty Nguyen and Dave “Devilfish” Ulliot
Phil Ivey, made quick run to over $100K in chips and busted Australian bad boy Tony G, when Tony moved all in on the turn drawing dead against Phil’s set of fours.
Chris “Jesus” Ferguson, ranked 6th in the chip count at the top of day two, and was among the early chip leaders. However, his counterpart Howard Lederer, Captain of the Transatlantic Poker Cup US Team, was one the first to leave the table.
Four women continue to hold their own on day one, including Ruth Graham, Cecilia Reyes, Xuyen Pham and Renee Wexler, who leads the ladies on with $45,700 in chips.
Update on the Hendon Mob
Joe “The Elegance” Beevers played a strong game on day one, finishing among the top nine players with $63,000 in chips, Ross Boatman finished with $20,800. Out just before the dinner break were Ram “Crazy Horse” Vaswani and Barny Boatman. Last week Ram won the Irish Winter Tournament, bringing home $ 117,003 (€ 93,000).
All four of the Hendon Mob will be taking on the US Team, comprising Howard Lederer, Phil Ivey, Chris Ferguson and Andy Bloch, in tomorrow’s Transatlantic Poker Cup. In this US/UK show down, the teams will play four consecutive heads up matches to be determined in a draw later today. If matches are tied at 2-2, a fifth match will be held as a tiebreaker.
About Monte Carlo Millions
Monte Carlo Millions is the world’s most exclusive poker tournament and the very first poker tournament to be held in the Principality of Monaco. Monte Carlo Millions is sponsored exclusively by PrimaPoker.com, the world’s largest online poker network that is dedicated to sending players to the best tournaments around the globe. The $20,000 package includes round-trip airfare for two, a seven-night stay at the Hotel Hermitage, private helicopter transportation from Nice to Monte-Carlo, a tour of the French Riviera, gourmet meals, lavish cocktail parties and the $14,000 buy-in to the event. With an estimated prize pool of $1 million, Monte Carlo Millions guarantees that every player will win a minimum of $1,000. To learn more, visit www.montecarlomillions.com.