Peter Thai
Peter Thai won the first WSOP bracelet of the 2023 series, claiming the Casino Employees event title for over $75,000.

The second day of action in the 2023 World Series of Poker is in the can and after five tournaments took place at the felt, one bracelet was on the wrist of a new winner, and four headlines were made in other big events.

With the action red hot at the felt in both Horseshoe Las Vegas and Paris casinos, we’ve got the lowdown on who won what and which big names are chasing gold on Day 3.

Peter Thai Wins Casino Employees Event Bracelet

The first gold bracelet of the 54th annual WSOP has been won. The $500 Casino Employees Event #1 played down to a winner and it was Californian table game dealer Peter Thai who reigned supreme to take his first gold bracelet. With Thai reaching the 10-handed final table second in chips, but following the early eliminations of Mark Kawamoto, Lisa Eckstein and Joe Pavan, started to rise.

At that stage, the overnight chip leader Benson Tam was still a prominent player, but he exited in fifth place, just after the longest-lasting non-American player, Canadian Sean Balfour, busted in sixth. After Bruce Jiang left in the same, the winner of that double scalp, Peter Thai, rose to the top of the chipcounts and he never looked back.

Out in third place was Paul Blanchette, who lost to Thai’s flopped kings, and that elimination gave Thai an unassailable lead of over 9:1 in chips. Heads-up lasted just one hand, James Urbanic shoving with Qd7c and Thai having an easy call with KsTc. The board of ThTs4cQh4s only ever gave Urbanic the slimmest of hopes to drawing to a two-outer on the river and Thai celebrated a stunning victory surrounded by his friends on the rail.

WSOP 2023 Event #1 $500 Casino Employees Final Table Results:

Place Player Country Prize
1st Peter Thai U.S.A. $75,535
2nd James Urbanic U.S.A. $46,690
3rd Paul Blanchette U.S.A. $33,051
4th Bruce Jiang U.S.A. $23,738
5th Benson Tam U.S.A. $17,303
6th Sean Balfour Canada $12,802
7th Keith McCormack U.S.A. $9,617
8th Joe Pavan U.S.A. $7,337
9th Lisa Eckstein U.S.A. $5,686
10th Mark Kawamoto U.S.A. $4,477


Hallay Leads High Roller, Winter and Kornuth Both Chasing

The action reached the final table stages in Event #2 as the $25,000 High Roller field was trimmed from 78 players on Day 2 once late registrations were complete. That meant a total field of 207, with a prizepool of over $4.8 million up for grabs. Players such as 16-time WSOP bracelet winner Phil Hellmuth, 2022 Heads Up Championship winner Dan Smith, former WSOP Player of the Year Shaun Deeb and recent Triton Cyprus Main Event winner Jason Koon all missed out on the money places.

It was Justin Saliba who bubbled the event, with players such as Ben Lamb (30th for $40,000), Justin Bonomo (29th for $43,750), former Main Event winner Koray Aldemir (26th for $43,750), 2022 world champion Espen Jorstad (25th for $43,750) and Daniel Negreanu (22nd for $50,000) all falling short of the final table. The elimination of recent WPT winner Bin Weng in 12th place for $62,763 helped propel Alex Hallay to the top of the leaderboard, itself a remarkable achievement. Earlier in the day, Hallay had been short, down to just 40,000 chips, so to end the day with close to double his closest rival’s stack is nothing short of a phenomenal result.

Hallay ended the day with 7,980,000 chips but behind him lie some serious movers in the game. Chris Moore (4,455,000) and Joey Weissman will be big threats, but even more so Sean Winter (3,945,000) and Chance Kornuth (2,605,000) if experience counts. At the final table of a high roller, it definitely does, meaning tomorrow’s bracelet – and $1.2 million top prize – is anyone’s at this stage.

WSOP 2023 Event #2 $25,000 High Roller Day 2 Chipcounts:

Place Player Country Chips
1st Axel Hallay France 7,980,000
2nd Chris Moore U.S.A. 4,455,000
3rd Joey Weissman U.S.A. 4,150,000
4th Alexandre Vuilleumier Switzerland 3,975,000
5th Sean Winter U.S.A. 3,945,000
6th Chance Kornuth U.S.A. 2,605,000
7th Ren Lin China 1,500,000
8th Jake Schindler U.S.A. 1,205,000


Matt Glantz Among Mystery Millions Survivors

Last year’s Mystery Millions bounty event at the WSOP Saw one of the most iconic moments of the whole Series as Matt Glantz won the $1m bounty. His ecstatic expression in holding aloft the slip revealing his prize featured as an award-nominated photograph by Hayley Hochstetler, so could Glantz survive a Day 1a of this year’s event that had an appropriate 2,023 entries. Of course he could.

Not content with jibing at his fellow players, Glantz made the cut with a chip stack of 525,000 chips, good for 64th in the overnight rankings of 102 survivors. Top of the shop was Francis Anderson, with a whopping 2.75 million chips, followed by fellow Americans Bohdan Slyvinskyi (2.3m), David Gonia (2.2m) and Dan Colpoys (2m) in the chipcounts.

WSOP 2023 Event #3 $1,000 Mystery Millions Day 1 Chipcounts:

Place Player Country Chips
1st Francis Anderson U.S.A. 2,750,000
2nd Bohdan Slyvinskyi U.S.A. 2,310,000
3rd David Gonia U.S.A. 2,245,000
4th Dan Colpoys U.S.A. 2,000,000
5th Mattias Hansen Denmark 1,950,000
6th Justin Wright U.S.A. 1,925,000
7th Rostyslav Sabishchenko Ukraine 1,550,000
8th Darin Utley U.S.A. 1,440,000
9th Jimmy D’Ambrosio U.S.A. 1,415,000
10th Tyson Rampersad Canada 1,370,000


McEachern Makes Grade in Tournament of Champions

A total of 726 players showed up for the Tournament of Champions, the freeroll event with one simple but difficult qualification necessary – to have won a WSOP bracelet or WSOPC ring over the past 12 months. At the close of play, it was Boshuang Gao (445,000) who made the 224 Day 2 list with the most chips, but plenty of other big names made the grade, including WSOP Commentator Lon McEachern (133,000).

More on that nickname later, but McEachern wasn’t the only star to bag in the event. Jeremy Ausmus won two bracelets in both 2021 and 2022 but will only have 28,500 chips to fight with on Day 2. Matt Stout (77,500) and Phil Shing (74,500) are better placed to run up a stack for the final day of the event.

WSOP 2023 Event #4 Tournament of Champions Day 1 Chipcounts:

Place Player Country Chips
1st Boshuang Gao U.S.A. 445,000
2nd Roger Franco U.S.A. 393,500
3rd Brandon Hamlet U.S.A. 325,000
4th Richard Folkes U.S.A. 294,000
5th Dakota Britton U.S.A. 291,000
6th Richard Doyen U.S.A. 284,000
7th Jennifer Lin U.S.A. 272,500
8th Julien Perouse France 268,500
9th Ryan Tillmann U.S.A. 256,000
10th Niall Costigan U.S.A. 245,500


Hui Hoping for Glory in Dealer’s Choice Event #5

There were 456 entries in Event #5, the $10,000-entry Dealer’s Choice 6-Handed event, with just 135 of them making the Day 2 seat draw. Top of the leaderboard when the final hands had played out was Larry Tull (217,000), who was closely followed in the chipcounts by Tomasz Gluszko (205,500) and Andrew Donabedian (190,000). Phil Hui (175,000) ended the day fourth in chips and will be looking to run that stack all the way to the third and final day of the event when Day 2 begins.

While stars such as Robert Campbell, Dylan Linde and Greg Raymer all busted on the day, others bagged up chips, with former bracelet winners Benny Glaser (28,500), Nacho Barbero (36,000), Daniel Negreanu (39,000), Brian Rast (47,000) and Richard Ashby (60,000) all hoping that their skills in this event give them a boost on the ‘middle day’ of the tournament.

WSOP 2023 Event #5 $10,000 Dealer’s Choice 6-Handed Day 1 Chipcounts:

Place Player Country Chips
1st Larry Tull U.S.A. 217,000
2nd Tomasz Gluszko Poland 205,500
3rd Andrew Donabedian U.S.A. 190,000
4th Phil Hui U.S.A. 175,000
5th Amnon Filippi U.S.A. 174,000
6th Denis Nesterenko Russia 172,500
7th Clayton Mozden Canada 170,500
8th Nick Kost U.S.A. 170,500
9th Dylan Smith Canada 169,500
10th Marco Johnson U.S.A. 168,000


With food options at the World Series of Poker always a matter of heated debate, Angela Jordison has solved the matter of how to make sure that late-night pizza slice is piping hot.

Matt Glantz has good news for all both of those Mystery Millions fans who are cheering him on in this year’s event.

Finally, Norman Chad might have a new commentator next to him in the booth come the Main Event. Llama Karen is in the building.

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