GGPoker WSOP Main Event Day 1A recap

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Poker writer Geoff Fisk profile photo
Geoff Fisk
Posted on: December 01, 2020 11:00 PST

Julian 'VWgunther' Menhardt comes away with chip lead in opening WSOP Main Event Flight

The unprecedented 2020 World Series of Poker Main Event kicked off Sunday, with the first of three Day 1 flights playing out on the GGPoker network.

Julian 'VWgunther' Menhardt topped all players emerging from the Day 1A flight, bagging 534,490 chips. The Austrian Menhardt came away with the chip lead from a flight that saw 246 entries whittle down to 62 survivors by the end of the night's action.

The chip counts and real names provided by PokerNews live coverage of the Main Event shows the top ten players in the Day 1A chip counts all coming from different countries. The truly international affair saw other top chip counts posted by Germany's Paul 'AsiaStylez' Esau (534,490), Dirk Gerritse (457,197) of the Netherlands, Preben Stokkan (446,677) of Norway, and China's 'sunnyzyang1982' (441,981).

GGPoker WSOP Main Event Day 1A end of day chip counts

Ranking Player Name* Playing From Day 1A Chip Count
1 Julian ‘VWgunther’ Menhardt Austria 534,490
2 Paul ‘AsiaStylez’ Esau Germany 472,075
3 Dirk Gerritse Netherlands 457,197
4 Preben Stokkan Norway 446,677
5 sunnyzyang1982 China 441,981
6 Ilya Anatsky Belarus 407,356
7 Michal ‘ml22322’ Lubas Poland 397,579
8 Sosia ‘Aunty_Ninja’ Jiang New Zealand 390,312
9 Laurynas Levinskas Lithuania 389,628
10 WhatIfPIOswrong United Kingdom 386,050

*real names courtesy of PokerNews

Day 1A Action

The 246 entries that showed up for the first day of Main Event action played eight hours of poker, with Day 1A wrapping up at the end of 16 half-hour levels. Plenty of poker's biggest names registered for the $10,000 Main Event, but several of those players officially hit the virtual rail on Day 1A.

The Main Event's freezeout format means that this list of poker's finest will have to wait until next year to contend for a Main Event bracelet. GGPoker Ambassador Fedor Holz, Ole Schemion, Kristen Bicknell, Patrik 'Magicpsilo' Antonius, Wiktor Malinowski, and Christian Rudolph all hit the exit on Day 1A, and are frozen out of re-entering this year's Main Event.

The 62 players making through to Day 2 does include names like Georgios Sotiropoulos (43,903), a former WSOP bracelet winner who finished just inside the Day 1 bubble at No. 62 in the chip counts. Other surviving players from Day 1A include Dominykas 'MickeyMouse' Mikolaitis (113,063), Russian high roller regular Artur Martirosian (135,162), Yuri Dzivielevski (184,326), and Daniel Dvoress (200,905).

The list of 62 names getting through Day 1A action will return for Day 2 on Sunday, December 7.

Upcoming WSOP Main Event Schedule

Two more opening-day flights are set to play out, and surviving players from Day 1B and Day 1C will join the Day 1A players and advance to Day 2. Day 1B takes place Friday, Dec. 5, and Day 1C plays out Saturday, Dec. 6.

From there, Day 2 will play down to a final table. Those nine players will then reconvene on Dec. 15 at King's Casino in Rozvadov, Czech Republic, and play down to a champion.

That lone survivor will then await the winner of the U.S. side of the 2020 Main Event, which sees Day 1 and Day 2 play out on Dec. 13-14. Day 2 plays down to a final table, which will then commence as a live tournament from the Rio Las Vegas on Dec. 28.

The U.S. winner will then take on the international champion in a heads-up battle for the 2020 WSOP Main Event Championship. That match takes place at the Rio Dec. 30.

Featured image source: Twitter